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Mills and Bang

            Everyone knows that men like reading action-packed war stories. Everyone knows that women prefer emotion-packed love stories. But not everyone knows that a publisher exists who caters for both tastes simultaneously and has pioneered the invention of war love stories.
            Yes, Mills & Bang was created solely to bring you military romance, in other words blushful war sagas which combine killing and kissing, hand-holding and hand-to-hand combat in the same pulse-racing works of fiction!
            Here are some new titles which Mills and Bang are proud to present for your summer reading..........


            ‘Major Rodney Strang is a modern hero’, said Lieutenant Jenny Wintle at her court-martial. ‘He is a peerless soldier! He is a man it is hard not to love! I can say this, because I love him, as a soldier ! Not sexually, not physically - I love him on strictly military grounds! How can anyone say this is wrong?’
            There is not a dry eye in the court as the beautiful raven-haired girl in uniform unfolds her tale of passion and explains why she was found in the bed of her commanding officer, even though he was not there at the time. Can she win them round to acquittal? Or will Mrs Rodney Strang get them to see things rather differently? A taut tale of tangled passions, desperate devotion to duty and a vital missing pair of pyjamas.


            ‘Might I have a word, sir?’
            ‘Carry on, sergeant,’ said Major Knowles.
            ‘It’s about that native woman you’re interrogating,’ said the sergeant.
            ‘Excellent source of local information,’ said Knowles. ‘I’m glad we got hold of her. Invaluable . . .  why?’
            ‘Well,’ said the sergeant, ‘there’s beginning to be talk among the ranks. You’ve been interrogating her for over three months now. That’s a long time.’
            ‘She’s very well informed,’ said Major Knowles, blushing unaccountably. ‘Takes a lot of debriefing.’
            ‘The men have also heard a lot of laughing and singing coming from your interrogation sessions, sir...’
            ‘Good heavens ! What are you trying to suggest?’
            Knowles knew perfectly well what the sergeant was suggesting. But was he man enough to admit it? A story that follows the twists and turns of the human heart, and also examines some of the problems of foraging in semi-tropical scrubland.


              A sequel to the popular Sex and Violins, this pursues the further career of bandmaster Robert “Big Baton” Baistow, as he seeks to lick the regimental band into shape. The band is now mixed, and Robert makes two interesting discoveries: one, that women musicians tend to march at a different speed to men players, and two, that trombonist Nellie Carnforth marches in a much more alluring way than either. There’s laughter, spills and a few tears when Robert gets Nellie in for extra tuition, and things nearly get out of hand!



            Why has Liza come to the old Great War battlefields of Northern France? Not because of family connections, but because she is drawn there by the magic of Sebastian Faulks’s powerful novel, Birdsong, and even more by Sebastian Faulks’s glamorous Greek profile. Standing on the edge of a French field, once battered by Boche bombardment, she hears a voice behind her: ‘You’re English, aren’t you?’ Her heart jumps. No, it’s not Faulks, but a TV researcher called Ken who has come to explore the possibility of turning Birdsong into television drama. Stick with Ken, her heart tells her, and one day it will lead to the long-awaited meeting with Faulks. But does it? And when it happens, will her heart have moved meanwhile in other, stranger directions



              ‘It’s a great mistake ever having let women in the Navy,’ said Captain Greenhaugh to Petty Officer Tim “Kim” Whitlow. ‘Fluttering of eyelashes, turn of a pretty ankle - things like that get out of all proportion to the average man when he’s out at sea.’
            ‘It isn’t eyelashes and ankles that the average man is after,’ said Petty Officer Tim “Kim” Whitlow. ‘Not that I have ever considered you an average man, sir ....’
            To his amazement, Whitlow put his hand gently on the captain’s wrist. To his even greater amazement, the captain quite liked it.
            ‘Call me Kim, sir...’
            In the ensuing months, Captain Greenhaugh was to find out a great deal about himself he didn’t know, a great deal about navigation he should have known already, and exactly why Whitlow was known to the crew as Pretty Officer Whitlow.

The Independent Thursday May 7 1998

The Independent Thurs Dec 2 04