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With a referendum on Scottish independence in the offing, it’s a good time to ask the question contained within this book’s subtitle: ‘What has held the UK together and what is dividing it?’
In 1988, the American Museum in Britain – located near Bath – received a bequest of more than 200 Renaissance maps of the New World from Dr Dallas Pratt, the museum’s co-founder
Nick Thorpe, a veteran BBC correspondent, travelled the length of the Danube, Europe's second-longest river. He delved into the rich history and culture of a river that ‘carved a path, or laid a trail, for people to follow westwards’
We take our world of neatly defined territorial units for granted. The linear boundaries are set (for the most part) and they help to guide every aspect of international relations. But it wasn’t always this way
‘Eruption’ suggests something sudden, but when the Icelandic volcano Laki erupted in 1783, the process lasted eight months and cast a shadow over the whole of Europe
As the UK battles one of the wettest winters on record, the arrival of this title is certainly timely. After all, floods and the damage, displacement and disease that follow kill more people than any other natural disaster
An early reference to ‘Pontius Pilot’ made my heart sink, but perhaps it was just a typo (the book has many). Unintentional comedy aside, this is a resolutely solemn trudge through its subject matter
It makes perfect sense for the debate about climate change to be dominated by practitioners of the natural sciences: we have to know what is going on before we can decide how to react

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