Six books your Dad might like

Top Gear epic failures

Here’s six 2014 books for celebrating Father’s Day on Sunday

Richard Porter Top Gear Epic Failures -The automotive industry is responsible for some of the most beautiful designs ever to grace the face of the planet. But it’s had its fair share of bad days at the office too. Whether it’s Ford designing a car that looks like a lady’s nether parts, Toyota accidentally calling their car ‘the merde’ (in France) or Mitsubishi unveiling their new ‘Starion’ after mishearing calls from head office in Japan to call it the ‘Stallion’, the list of great motoring cock-ups is a long and distinguished one – and the time has come to name and shame

 Big Phil Campion's real world SAS survival guide: any threat, any situation, sorted!Big Phil Campion’s real world SAS survival guide: any threat, any situation, sorted! The 21st century is a place fraught with danger. Nobody is better placed to help counter these everyday threats than ex-SAS survival expert Phil Campion. He imparts much sought-after knowledge on all aspects of modern life, from advice on how to make your home safer and how to survive your daily commute, to the seemingly more distant threat of how to survive in a war zone or if caught in a man-made disaster.    

Tim Dowling How to be a Husband – 20 years ago Tim Dowling and his wife embarked on a project so foolhardy, the prospect made them shudder. They agreed to get married – with the resigned determination of two people plotting to bury a body in the woods. Two decades on they are still together, still married and still, well, he hesitates to say happy, if only because it’s one of those absolute terms that life has taught him to deploy with caution. Story of how Tim ended up here, along with an examination of what it means to be a husband in the 21stC  

The last British Dambuster: one man's extraordinary life and the raids that changed historyGeorge JohnsonThe last British Dambuster: one man’s extraordinary life and the raids that changed history. Johnny Johnson is 92 and one of very few men who can recall first-hand the most daring and ingenious air raid of all time. On 16th May 1943, Johnny, alongside 132 specially selected comrades, took off from Scampton airbase in Lincolnshire. For six weeks they had been trained to fulfil one mission that was near impossible: to destroy three dams deep within Germany’s Ruhr Valley. It was a daring task but, against the odds, Johnny and his crew survived. For the first time, he relives every moment of that fatal night – and the devastating aftermath     

 Guy Martin: my autobiography at breakneck speedIn his own words, this is Guy Martin’s full story – from the boy who learned to prep bikes with his dad, to the spirited team mechanic, paying his way by collecting glasses, to the young racer at the start of his first race and the buzz he’s been chasing ever since

Carol J Baxter –  The peculiar case of the electric constable: a true tale of passion, poison & pursuit  The peculiar case of the electric constable: a true tale of passion, poison & pursuitJohn Tawell, sincere English Quaker but also a sinning one, was convicted of forgery & transported to Sydney, where he made a (legal) fortune. Returning home after 15 years, he thought he would be welcomed; instead he was shunned. Struggling financially when, on New Year’s Day 1845, he boarded a train to Paddington. Soon, policemen arrived at the platform chasing a murderer – but the 7:42 had departed. A telegraph message was sent: a ‘KWAKER’ man was on the run. True tale of murder & scientific revolution, charting the dawn of the information age in Victorian England    


Father’s Day books

image-mediumIt’s Father’s Day this Sunday. Here’s a random list of books exploring father/child relationships!

Non-fiction The footballer who could fly: living in my father’s black and white world by Duncan Hamilton – Inspired by his father’s lifelong devotion to Newcastle United, Duncan Hamilton charts the progress of postwar British football to the present day. But at the heart of the book is his exploration of the bond between father and son through the Beautiful Game and how football became the only connection between two people who were totally different from one another

Dear Lumpy by Roger Mortimer – ‘Dearest Lumpy, I hope you are plump and well. Your mother bashed her car yesterday and chooses to believe it was not her fault.’ Roger Mortimer’s witty dressing-downs and affectionate advice for his daughter Louise (aka ‘Lumpy’).

When did you last see your father? by Blake Morrison – A bestseller translated into several languages and the inspiration for a whole genre of confessional memoirs, this book is an extraordinary portrait of family life, father-son relationships and bereavement

Daughter of bluebird by Gina Campbell -The author, the last surviving member of a remarkable dynasty, will forever be most closely associated with the fatal attempt by her father to break the water speed record in his boat. Here she talks about her life with Donald Campbell as father, early-day ‘celebrity’, and holder of many world records on land and water.

The children of lovers: a memoir of William Golding by his daughter  Judy Golding recalls growing up with the author of Lord of the Flies – a brilliant, loving, sometimes difficult parent – in this frank and engaging family memoir. The years of her childhood and adolescence saw her father change from an impecunious schoolteacher to a famous novelist


The road by Cormac McCarthy.  A father and his young son walk alone through burned America. Nothing moves in the ravaged landscape save the ash on the wind. They have nothing but a pistol to defend themselves against the men that stalk the road

The curious incident of the dog in the night-time by Mark Haddon A murder mystery like no other, this novel features Christopher Boone, a 15 year-old who suffers from Asperger’s syndrome. When he finds a neighbour’s dog murdered, he sets out on a journey which turns his world upside down

Sons and daughters by Margaret Dickinson. Charlotte is an only child, reared by a brutal father who cannot forgive her for not being the son he desires.