Reading room

Chapter 2 Beginnings Accounting for one’s own life is a leery matter. Of course, I can tell you a little or a lot. What though did I tell my dear Biddy? You can imagine it. I wished her to think … Continue reading

PRESS RELEASE The Man That Never Was. Daniel Defoe 1644-1731 A Critical Revision of His Life and Writing

NEW BOOK: John Martin. The Man That Never Was. Daniel Defoe 1644-1731 A Critical Revision of His Life and Writing, Heritage Publications, July 2013. Hardback. p 541 Price £35. ISBN 978-0-9543172-4-9  John Martin, a best-selling Defoe biographer, has written a … Continue reading

Tilbury Fort

Tibury Fort is well-known tourist attraction on the bank of the River Thames and now cared for by English Heritage. There has been some kind of defensive structure on the site from the fourteenth century but it was Henry VIII … Continue reading

The British Appetite for Riots

Each new riot in Britain, and there have been many over recent decades and in our past history, has taken the nation by surprise. The cries of ‘put them down and punish them’ has been an inevitable outcome. Cracking down … Continue reading

Captain Avery and Daniel Defoe

Chapter 1 – My Crime

The climax of my career at sea was a stunning sea battle and a victory in the face of overwhelming odds. As I lie on my bed I can hear the roar of the cannon, the hiss of bullets and the cries of many men some exultant and others despairing. And not for a minute but for many hours and at times when we looked to have failed. It took the fierceness and resolution of a motley assembly of men, my men, to achieve the impossible. Continue reading

Review. Katherine Frank, Crusoe: Daniel Defoe, Robert Knox and the Creation of a Myth, Bodley Head, 2011.

Katherine Frank has written an interesting and agreeable account of the island stories of Daniel Defoe and Robert Knox, in particular Robinson Crusoe and An Historical Relation of the island of Ceylon. She attempts the impossible and one can only … Continue reading