As the 21st February 2018 marked the 101st anniversary of the sinking of the SS Mendi, I thought much about men at sea and the perils of travels by ship during war time. The First World War saw well over 140 ships lost at sea through U-boat action or sinking; there is a page on Wikipedia recording all such disasters where over 30 lives were lost.
I have always been interested in polar exploration and history. I think the best book on early 20th century polar exploration is by Apsley Cherry Garrard, The Worst Journey in the World, which is where Angie Butler starts her book. Butler’s book also fits into a library on polar exploration. Published in 2011, it is a book about her seven year dogged quest to find Frank Wild, the polar explorer and Shackleton’s right hand man. Butler made it her mission to discover what happened to Wild in the last third of his life.
Review of Apennine War Diary: An Artist’s sketch book 1944-1945 by Walter Hain. The foreword is by Matthew Ward. Published by Bretwalda Books Ltd, 2015
Roy Macnab (1923 - 2004) was a South African poet, journalist, broadcaster, diplomat and author. He used all these considerable talents in researching and compiling this book, published in 1962. This book is perfect for the armchair traveller, we are reminded that we are a country of immigrants and that South Africa like other colonies and the "new world" was a demographic melting pot.