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Making Craft Beer at Home

Craft beer has in recent years seen an unprecedented surge in popularity across the United States and Canada. Tired of mass-produced beers, drinkers have gravitated toward handcrafted, small-batch and often local beers and many devotees have even begun to brew their own. This comprehensive book, written by an experienced craft brewer, provides background, discusses the ingredients employed, explains what equipment is required and details the step-by-step “how-to” of the brewing process. A perfect introduction to the world of craft beer, Making Craft Beer at Home demystifies the art of home brewing while providing an historical perspective on America’s love affair with the drink, and shows why this often exquisite refreshment has taken its place at the table alongside fine wines and liquors.

Covered Bridges

Covered Bridges are historic pieces of American and Canadian rural history, gracing the countryside from Oregon to Tennessee and from California to New Brunswick and across Canada. In this lavishly illustrated volume Joseph D. Conwill recounts the rich, romantic history of covered bridges as they developed from early timber bridges, born out of the traditions of Medieval times, into modernized structures designed for the motorized traffic of the early twentieth century. Reflecting on the efforts to keep covered bridges in service as the face of the rural landscape is transformed, and the challenge of preserving their historic character while making them safe for modern traffic, Conwill guides the reader across the diverse range of covered bridges to be found throughout the North America.

Art Deco

Although usually associated with the 1920s and the ‘30s, in fact the Art Deco style had begun to emerge in France prior to the advent of the First World War. But it was during the interwar years that the style, reaching full maturity, was adopted by the international elite as the perfect expression of modern opulence and elegance, and to this day Art Deco designs are redolent of the age of Jazz, cocktails, the Charleston, speakeasies, Hollywood glamour, New York skyscrapers and, above all, style. The ‘20s was also a period of great technological advances in engineering and transportation, and the perpetual modernity and futuristic aura of Art Deco are evocative of this too. Here, BBC Antiques Roadshow expert Eric Knowles provides a lavishly illustrated guide to this most alluring and timeless of styles.

Consult the Oracle

“If you sing before breakfast you will cry before supper...’ In their own words, what it meant for Victorians to dream of actors, April Fools, herrings or a railway ticket – why it was advised to throw a black snail by its horns over the left shoulder for good luck – and why it is essential to inform bees of a death in the family. “If one drops a knife, a woman is coming; a fork, a man is coming; a spoon, a fool.” Tappings on tables, questionable curatives, old wives’ tales and whispers from beyond the grave – Victorians were fascinated by the supernatural. Consult the Oracle was where they might have turned when they needed to identify a witch, interpret an omen or dream, required a natural cure or wanted to divine their future with a pack of cards – or simply wished to understand what the supernatural meant to them and their ancestors. First published in 1899, it offered a layman’s guide to ‘matters magical and mysterious’, and today is a quirky glimpse of a supernatural age now lost, by turns haunting and hilarious.

Fashion in the Time of William Shakespeare

Garments and accessories are prominent in almost all of William Shakespeare’s plays, from Hamlet and Othello to A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Twelfth Night. The statement 'Clothes maketh the man’ was one that would have resonated with their audiences: the rise of England's merchant class had made issues of rank central to Elizabethan debate, and a rigid table of sumptuary laws carefully regulated the sorts of fabric and garment worn by the different classes. From the etiquette of courtly dress to the evolution of the Elizabethan ruff, in this vibrant introduction Sarah Jane Downing explores the sartorial world of the late-16th century, why people wore the clothes they did, and how the dizzyingly eclectic range of fashions (including ruffs, rebatos and French farthingales) transformed over time.

The Dog Book

The perfect gift for any dog lover, this is the story of man's best friend from the canine gods of Ancient Egypt to the heroic mascots of the Second World War. Over the millennia dogs have been hailed as gods, demons, saints, military heroes, even reigning kings – and all the while have been the keen hunters, loyal guards and beloved pets we know today. They feature in Egyptian myth, classical astronomy, medieval romances and early modern portraiture; they took part in the court-life of Imperial China, in early Hollywood film studios and in intrepid expeditions to the North Pole. Featuring the pampered pets of Queen Victoria and Pablo Picasso, popular medieval dog names, regimental mascots of the Napoleonic Wars and tales of canine loyalty through the ages, this beautifully illustrated volume shows how dogs have for millennia been the beloved companions of peasants and princes alike.

Posters of the First World War

The First World War, a new low in the annals of armed conflict, coincided with a golden age for the relatively new art of advertising. Striking and colourful posters were produced throughout the years 1914–18 to recruit soldiers, promote investment, keep up morale and, naturally, to vilify the enemy; prominent artists including Alfred Leete paired bold images with punchy text to maximise impact. The selection in this book offers an informative guide to the range of posters created and to how they were displayed around the nation, and explores the public’s increasing dissatisfaction with being patronised and goaded. From the iconic, commanding Your Country Needs YOU! to the anxious domestic scene of Daddy, What Did YOU Do in the War?, and including the infamous depiction of a bayoneting in Back Him Up!, this book puts the reader in the shoes of the Great War ‘man in the street’.

Bed Manners

A vintage light-hearted guide to the fraught battlefield of bedroom etiquette ... Ever wanted to know how to avoid horrifying your husband with your nightly toilette? Or avoid incurring the wrath of your wife when creeping home late at night? First published in the 1930s, the humorous advice in ‘Bed Manners’ reveals the rules of bedroom etiquette, including whose responsibility it is to investigate strange sounds, how to make morning conversation, and coping with a bedfellow who kicks, snores or steals all the covers.

Shire Journal

The Harrow & Wealdstone Disaster

Greg Morse

Mechanical means of warning train drivers about danger signals ahead had been in development since 1906, when the Great Western Railway trialled its ‘Automatic Train Control’ on the Henley branch in Oxfordshire. Spurred by a fatal accident at Slough...