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Monday, 30 April 2012

Our Wiki!!

Check out our wiki page, it has a list of some of our Notable authors! see something you fancy then get in contact with us!!!

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Sister Giles


The End and The Beginning now available in eBook format: To buy click on the link. 
Amazon Kindle

The End and The Beginning is a fascinating memoir of the later part of Sister Giles life. It relates the unexpected, often humorous, journey from an enclosed community to the secular world, without in any way jeopardising Sister Giles sense of vocation.In the early chapters the author touches briefly on her life as a nun in an enclosed order and the reader is given an insight into the austere regime of such a vocation. She is later given leave of absence when a friend asks her help to set up a retreat and Sister Giles is surprised to discover that she is called upon to offer succour in a much wider circle than she could have foreseen.
The author discovers a whole new way of life outside the order; she learns to drive, visits the hairdressers and discovers supermarkets. But there comes a time when she has to make a painful decision: should she leave her order permanently? Fortunately there had been a change in Canon Law some years previously which meant that she could ‘remain consecrated, yet released from community life.’ After three days she decided to remain in the secular world.
This is a story of courage, of the power of prayer and of a nun’s devotion to what she perceived as her duty to others in need of help. A combination of direct conversation, humour and eloquent descriptive passages means that the reader is taken with Sister Giles through her life story.
This is a unique story of an unusual person whose life is lived for other people.

The End and the Beginning
An Amazing WomanHaving trained at the Webber School of acting then became a Nun. After 20 years in a contemplative community she came into the outside world to look after those who needed affection, nursing. This account is written with humour with understanding & one is never felt to be in any way a lesser mortal for failing in ones own way of life. Strongly recommended to be read - not just once but again & again.
Elspeth (Hampshire, UK)

Price £14.95  P & P £3.00 UK £4.50.20 Europe £7.50  ROW
Available on   email:   or tel 01913735660 with card details and address

Circle Completed now available in eBook format: To buy click on the link.
Amazon Kindle

When she left the convent she had called home for almost a quarter of a century, Sister Giles faced many challenges as she readjusted to life in the secular world. Constantly surprised and moved by acts of kindness, she was able to make a new life for herself, all the while preserving strong bonds with her order and never losing her sense of vocation.
In her follow-up to The End and The Beginning, Sister Giles celebrates the simple pleasures of the day to day and reminds us to value and appreciate the things that we all too often take for granted. A constant theme of Circle Completed is love - love of God, love of each other, love of life. Sister Giles’ love for others leaps from the page as she eloquently creates portraits of some of the people that have been important to her. Their stories are valued and shared.
Written with compassion and a warm sense of humour, this is an elegant, thoughtful and at times poignant book. It is also a reminder of the richness and fullness that life has to offer, if only we take the time to look for it.

Price £9.99  P & P £3.00 UK £4.50 Europe £7.50  ROW
Available on   email:   or tel 01913735660 with card details and address

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

The Improbable Bishop Ian Ramsey of Durham - John S Peart-Binns

The Improbable Bishop Ian Ramsey of Durham - John S Peart-Binns

A succession of masterful figures had the honour of serving as Bishop of Durham; saints and sages, prince-bishops, warriors and statesmen, builders and governors, reformers and controversialists. In 1966 a most unlikely candidate stepped into this mix. Born and bred in Lancashire, Ian Thomas Ramsey’s background gave few clues as to his future calling.

A brilliant and original thinker, his works on philosophy, theology and science developed and popularised new concepts in each discipline. Ordained in 1940, he served a curacy at Headington Quarry, Oxford and spent twenty three years as an academic: a lecturer and chaplain at Cambridge followed by a professorship at Oxford. Ramsey was an unexpected but inspired choice for appointment as Bishop of Durham. Ian Ramsey was immediately embraced by the people of Durham and soon the Church of England had an irrepressible and popular bishop in their midst. Focusing on Ramsey’s years in Durham The Improbable Bishop depicts a man whose compassion and work ethic made him ‘Everybody’s Bishop’ in pit villages, rural communities and secular institutions across the county. The book is a sensitive but rigorous assessment of the virtues, strengths, vulnerabilities and limitations of a man who left a lasting legacy in Durham and whose ideas influenced thinking across the country.

The author, John S. Peart-Binns, is a critically acclaimed episcopographer of fifteen prominent twentieth century subjects. In 2008 he received an M.Phil. with distinction from the University of Leeds for his thesis on Establishment and Disesstablishment in the life, thought and work of Herbert Hensley Henson, Bishop of Durham. Born and brought up in Bradford, he now lives with his wife Annis in the hub of the universe, Hebden Bridge in the South Pennines.


An affectionate and critical assessment of Ian Ramsey’s time as Bishop of Durham … one of the many good things about this book
 is the affectionate but shrewd memoirs by those who knew  Ramsey and worked with him.                                                                                                              CHURCH TIMES
Well researched and informative. It contains some very amusing and attractive photographs. Well worth a read.                                                                                                                                                                                                  Christ College Oxford
In his latest biography Peart-Binns has done a great service. He has reminded us of a great scholar and churchman whose work on a number of moral and ethical issues influenced the thought of a nation. 
                                                                                                                                                                               Canon Malcolm Grundy Teal Trust

Dr Jean Watkins (McMillan)

Jean McMillan has had a rich and varied life. Born in North Wales; she lived a happy childhood before going on to study medicine at the Royal Free Hospital. She worked as a GP in several practices around the country and currently enjoys lecturing about her foreign travels to local groups and is also active in village life in Burley in the New Forest, Hampshire.

Jean Watkins has had a rich and varied life. Born in North Wales; her happy childhood in Blackheath, South East London was interrupted by forced evacuation to Cumbria during the Second World War. She studied medicine at the Royal Free Hospital where she developed a keen interest in sport becoming British Junior Squash Champion in 1951. She worked as a GP in several practices around the country and currently enjoys lecturing about her foreign travels to local groups and is also active in village life in Burley in the New Forest, Hampshire. 

When Jean first visited China in 1978 she had no idea on the impact it would have on her life and the enthusiasm for other cultures that would be inspired in her, going so far as to return to twenty years later to observe the changes the culture had undergone. in between those trips she thoroughly explored areas of Africa, America and Asia; all of which she would return to again later in the interest of learning more from the people there, and eventually travelling on to Europe and the Middle East. An enthralling and enlightening read, Itchy Feet will leave you with a thirst for experience around the globe. 

We all hope Jean will carry on with her captivating travels and continue to inform us of these fascinating ways of life.


Jean McMillan has travelled with me regularly since 1995. I am a tour operator and ran many of the trips featured in Itchy Feet. Having organised many tours over many years you learn that the variety in destinations and cultures is matched by the variety of those travelling.
There are many types of traveller. Many are looking for adventure or to escape from their less exciting day to day lives, for others it is to fulfil a life-long dream to visit a particular place or see a particular site.   But for some it is to broaden their horizons and to learn and absorb from other cultures. Jean with her insatiable curiosity, enquiring mind and wide range of interests definitely falls into the latter camp.
A regular traveller, there is no bias or preference to where or how Jean travels. It could be by bus through rural Bulgaria, a light plane to southern Venezuela, the Shanghai express or by canoe along a tributary of the Amazon. Jean is equally at home in a grand Hotel in Cape Town as she is in a rest house in the Tibetan lowlands.
What makes a tour special for Jean is meeting the local people, seeing how they live, learning of their health care, education, hopes and fears for the future and for their children’s future. There is no starry eyed enthusiasm for the simple lives of the people. Having practiced medicine as a GP Jean knows the stresses and realities of life. Many will visit a destination and enjoy its wonderful scenery, its art and architecture and history.   For Jean the experience should be deeper it should tell us of how a country really is for the majority of the people who live there. I do not envy the guides on a tour Jean travels on. There will be steady stream of enquiring questions and brush-offs will not be tolerated!
Many is the time when planning a tour I have contacted Jean for her advice, and she will tell me to include a community centre, a rural clinic or school, that we need to meet the locals and be able to spend time with them.
Travelling to so many countries over the years has allowed Jean to cut through the accepted view of national progress. Her perceptive mind and experience allows her to see through the shiny symbols of modernity to the more fundamental aspects of a society – how it cares for its sick, elderly and children. In this sense Jean follows in the grand traditional of travellers from Marco Polo to Freya Stark. Her writing provides a snap shot of real life, all around the world over many years, making Itchy Feet a fascinating, informative and revealing book.

Jon Baines 

Part family history, part personal memoir and part travelogue Lucky Genes is a unique book and one that deserves a wide readership. Her travels are fondly remembered and eloquently recounted, particularly her first eye-opening and adventurous trip to China in 1978. A reflective and warm-hearted book it is full of interesting anecdotes about family life and foreign travel but also touches on subjects as varied as scientific progress and local history.


"I have just completed the first of Jean's books "Lucky Genes". Absolutely brilliant insight into the times, changes and lives of others from a time previous to ours. Gratifying and Inspirational. Please feel free to pass this critique on to Jean on my behalf, as the book is now doing the great northern run."

A brilliant review by a local reader who thoroughly enjoyed Jean Watkins 'Lucky Genes' and is now embarking on her more recent title 'Itchy Feet'.

To order Itchy Feet:

Price £15.00  P & P £2.50 UK £3.30 Europe £6.00 ROW
Available on email: or tel 01913735660
with card details and address

Available on the internet go to link:

To order Lucky Genes:
Price £12.95  P & P £2.00 UK £3.30 Europe £6.00 ROW
Available on email: or tel 01913735660
with card details and address

Available on the internet go to link:

Order both books for £27.95