“One of the best new podcasts encompassing books and history. Insightful, stimulating – and fun.” Andrew Roberts, author of George III.
History is about debate – and conversations. The Aspects of History Podcast sees our editor, Oliver Webb-Carter, regularly interview bestselling historians and historical novelists about their latest books. We aim to entertain and engage, to give writers a platform to speak about their work and how the past is never too far away from the present, or future.
We are always mindful of pushing the author’s latest book to the fore during the podcast, providing a link and recommending the title to our followers. The host of the podcast, our editor Oliver Webb-Carter, is always happy to be directed by each author to chat about other subjects too.
We promote each podcast for at least a fortnight on Twitter and can pass any file onto the author and publisher to promote on their sites, to extend the audience of the broadcast and generate greater sales for each book.
Since 2021 we have hosted podcasts with a number of bestselling historians and historical novelists, including Jeremy Paxman, Tessa Dunlop, Andrew Roberts, Anne O’Brien, Sarah Gristwood, Michael Ridpath and Saul David.
Whereas previously our podcast was only open to writers who we host Author Platforms with, we are now happy to arrange podcasts will all authors and publishers. Our fee to produce and promote each podcast is just £99. We can also provide a discount for those publishers with a Publisher Platform .
We usually try to go live with each podcast in conjunction with the release of a new hardback or paperback, but we can be flexible. It understandably helps if the author is a seasoned speaker and has following to promote podcast too, but it’s not essential. We are also in the position to create a dedicated podcast platform for a publisher for a year, whereby we can arrange 12 podcasts, one a month, for a fee of £999.
Please do pass onto any authors or colleagues who you think will be interested in getting in touch and discussing things further.
For further inquiries please contact email@example.com
In a short time, the Aspects of History Podcast has established itself as one of the best history podcasts available: with fascinating guests, interesting subjects, and the time to investigate ideas thoroughly, I heartily recommend it! Roger Moorhouse
This is the podcast that gives historians their voices – unexpected, sometimes awkward, and all the more powerful for it. History too often gets minced into marketable morsels. Here, those of us who write it get to speak out. Sarah Gristwood
I so enjoyed appearing on Aspects of History. An excellent podcast with skilful and knowledgeable questions and I’ve encouraged other authors to take part. Andrew Lownie
Podcasts shine brightly in the armoury of a writer. Being a member of Aspects of History, dedicated to history and historical fiction, makes it all so simple in bringing a book to life. How enjoyable it was to talk about my new novel of the Paston family, speaking to readers on a personal level as if they were friends, as if talking directly to them about my enthusiasms and reasons for writing about this famous Norfolk family. Thank you to Aspects of History! Anne O’Brien
The two key components of a great podcast are depth and accessibility and Aspects of History excels in both. This is down to the host, Oliver Webb-Carter, who gives his guests the space to explore their ideas with intellectual rigour while keeping his audience engaged. It also explains why the Aspects of History podcast is essential listening for anyone interested in history. Peter Hughes
It’s so refreshing for an author to be able to discuss the detail of their book with someone who has actually read it. Aspects of History really is different. Ollie gives you the time – and the perspicacious questions – to dig deep into the subject in a way few other platforms can or do. Robert Lyman
Steven Veerapen on Tudor Greatest Hits
This week I’m joined by Tudor historian and novelist Steven Veerapen. We talk about his novels, Of Blood Descended and The Queen’s Jewel and the Greatest Hits of the Tudors. Well known names such as Henry VIII, Anne Boleyn, Lady Jane Grey, Elizabeth I & Mary Queen of Scots, but also lesser known names such as Anthony Blanke and Kit Marlowe.
Episode Thirty Nine
Robert Harris on Act of Oblivion
Robert Harris, the bestselling novelist and author of novels such as The Ghost, Munich and V2, joins me to chat about his latest, Act of Oblivion.
We’re in 1660, and Charles II has ascended to the throne. Two of his father’s killers, Puritans Whalley & Goffe, are pursued in an act of vengeance. The story goes from London, to mainland Europe to the as yet largely undiscovered America. It’s the Butch Cassidy and Sundance Kid of the 17th century.
Episode Thirty Nine
Giles Milton on the Destruction of Smyrna
This week’s pod discusses the horrific events in Smyrna, Asia Minor, in 1922 – modern day Izmir in Turkey. On the centenary, Giles Milton and I discuss the horrific events that killed tens of thousands of Levantines living peacefully in the city, and caused a humanitarian disaster. If you don’t know about this, you should. Giles is a friend of the show, and author of Paradise Lost, all about the tragedy.
Episode Thirty Eight
Dr Tessa Dunlop on The Queen, Prince Philip and King Charles
On this bonus episode of the podcast, I chat with Dr Tessa Dunlop – royal historian and commentator, all about the Queen, her husband, and her son. We also chat about the media coverage, and what newspaper does King Charles read?
Episode Thirty Seven
Aspects of History pays tribute to Her Majesty The Queen.
Episode Thirty Six
Miranda Malins on Oliver Cromwell
If there is one man who can unite British monarchists and Irish nationalists, it is Oliver Cromwell, and so today I’m talking about this huge figure with the historian and novelist Miranda Malins, author of The Rebel Daughter, and The Puritan Princess, which involve Oliver’s daughters Bridget and Frances. We talk about how important women were in Cromwell’s life, and then we go on to talk about the man himself. His rise during the Civil War, His involvement in the trial and execution of Charles I, and his behaviour in Scotland, and most infamously Ireland. Many of you may already have a view of Oliver Cromwell, but Miranda makes the case that we need to step back and look at Cromwell dispassionately. History is nuance!
Episode Thirty Five
Helen Fry on Thomas Kendrick, Spymaster and the Man Who Saved MI6
This week’s episode is a chat with espionage author Helen Fry, about her new paperback Spymaster, the story of Thomas Kendrick. It’s an extraordinary story of one man’s efforts against the Gestapo, and his incredible achievement in saving thousands from the holocaust.
He was also station chief of MI6 in Austria, and as we’ll hear, came across two of the great British double agents of the last century, Kim Philby and George Blake. Not only that, but he was also involved in the rather murky episode when Rudolf Hess, then Hitler’s Deputy, flew to Scotland, apparently on his own, in an attempt to make peace overtures with the British government.
Episode Thirty Four
Andrew Roberts on the Cliveden Literary Festival
Andrew Roberts joins me to chat about his creation, the Cliveden Literary Festival. This is the foremost literary event of the year, and is on over the weekend of the 15th & 16th October. The festival involves three wonderful attractions for AoH listeners, history, writers and books. We chat about authors that will appear, talks at prior festivals, and Andrew’s favourite discussion so far. This chat took place before the horrific attack in upstate New York, and my thoughts are with Sir Salman and his family.
Episode Thirty Three
Barney White-Spunner on the Partition of India at 75
15th August 1947 saw Partition: independence for India and the creation of Pakistan. The author of Partition: The story of Indian independence and the creation of Pakistan in 1947, Barney White-Spunner, joined me to chat about the terrible events that led to approx. 1 million deaths and 15 million refugees.
We talk about the key players: Nehru, Jinnah, Gandhi, Patel, Mountbatten and Auchinleck, key moments and the horrific religiously motivated attacks that took place in August and September of that year.
Episode Thirty Two
Mark Ellis on Crime in WW2 and Top Ten Historical Movies
This week’s pod features Mark Ellis, bestselling crime novelist and creator of DCI Merlin. We chat about the reality of London life, when not all its population joined together against the common foe. His latest novel, Dead in the Water, features American criminals, Nazis and stolen art. The latest DCI Frank Merlin: Dead in the Water.
In the second part of the pod, I give my top 10 historical films. This list is mine, and so a little bit different to the usual lists you’ll see.
Episode Thirty One
Timothy Ashby on Elizabethan Secret Agents, Fédon’s Rebellion and Operation Condor
My chat this week is with Timothy Ashby, historian, novelist and author of Elizabethan Secret Agent: The Untold Story of William Ashby. Ashby was a spy working for Sir Francis Walsingham, spymaster for Queen Elizabeth I. Stationed in Edinburgh, he ran a number of operations to further the Queen’s cause against the Spanish. We also chat about the subject of his novel, Ranger, Fédon’s Rebellion in 1795, a slave rebellion on the island of Grenada against the British. Finally we talk about Operation Condor and the American efforts against regimes and democracies in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Max Hastings on Operation Pedestal, the mission to relieve Malta during WW2.
Max Hastings chats to friend of the show Saul David about the operation to relieve Malta in August 1942. The Axis powers had the island at their isolated and it was close to starvation. Churchill saw this as an opportunity for a heroic victory, in the mould of Dunkirk, and so ordered the Royal Navy to set sail from Gibraltar to relieve the island. Max discusses the heroism, and actions that were less heroic, in this fascinating discussion with veteran historian Saul David.
You can read Max’s book here: https://amzn.to/3OulxNx
Episode Twenty Nine
Konstantin Kisin on Free Speech in Comedy, life in the Soviet Union, and the West today.
Konstantin Kisin, comedian, podcaster, writer and author of An Immigrant’s Love Letter to the West, joins me to discuss his debut book. Konstantin was born in the Soviet Union, and both he and his family are well aware of what life was like outside the West. We discuss comedy today, how it’s under threat, even from the police. We also go on to talk about his family’s suffering at the hands of the Soviet system.
Where are we now as a society? We may think we’re free, but are we really when we see countless examples of people who lose their jobs and reputations needlessly. Konstantin is one person who has seen life in East and West, and he knows which he prefers.
You can get Konstantin’s book here: An Immigrant’s Love Letter to the West.
Episode Twenty Eight
Alex Gerlis on Espionage during the Second World War
Alex Gerlis joins me to discuss spying during the war, and, more importantly (!) football of the period. Alex supports Grimsby Town, and I support Southampton, but which team would the Nazis have taken an interest in? We also discuss Frank Foley, the man who saved thousands of Jews, and Klaus Barbie, the Nazi murderer based in France. Finally, Alex chats about his influences, and the man he has been compared to, John Le Carré.
Episode Twenty Seven
Mark Turnbull on the English Civil War
This week’s pod is on the brutal English Civil War, or War of the Three Kingdoms. Historian and novelist Mark Turnbull joins me to discuss. Mark is the author of The Rebellion Series, a trilogy of novels set during the Civil War, We chat Charles I, Henrietta Maria, Prince Rupert, Cromwell and the Earl of Essex, as well as Edgehill and Naseby. Was Charles I really a tyrant? Were the Levellers the Corbynistas of their day? Am I a Roundhead or Cavalier?
Episode Twenty Six
Gretchen Friemann on The Irish Revolution and the Anglo-Irish Treaty
“The Freedom to Achieve Freedom”. Michael Collins. This week’s episode is with journalist and author Gretchen Friemann discussing the Irish Revloution. We discuss the whole shebang, from the Act of Union in 1801, through the Home Rule crisis, Curragh Mutiny, Easter Rising, War of Independence, the Anglo-Irish Treaty and the Irish Civil War.
Episode Twenty Five
Robert Lyman interviews Antony Beevor on the Russian Revolution and Civil War
In this week’s episode, Antony Beevor discusses the subject of his latest book, Russia: Revolution & Civil War 1917-1921. Antony is interviewed by a hot new signing for Aspects of History, Robert Lyman, author of A War of Empires and my guest in earlier episodes.
The two historians discuss the brutality of the conflicts, and how Russia deposed the Tsar and transformed into the USSR under the leadership of a small number of ruthless leaders, Lenin among them.
Episode Twenty Four
Conn Iggulden on Ancient Greece, Pericles and Historical Fiction
I chat with one of the most successful authors writing historical fiction, Conn Iggulden. He’s written series on Julius Caesar and Genghis Khan, and more recently on Ancient Greece. Conn and I discuss his latest novel Lion, the Greeks and the Persians, Pericles and the beginnings of the Athenian Empire and Conn’s approach to historical fiction.
Episode Twenty Three
Damien Lewis on Josephine Baker, the Flame of Resistance
This week’s episode is with bestselling author Damien Lewis, talking about the wonderful Josephine Baker, spy during the Second World War, but also an entertainer loved by so many in Europe. It’s a story well told by Damien, and Josephine’s awe-inspiring antics led her to be entered into the French Pantheon in November 2021.
Episode Twenty Two
Gavin Mortimer on David Stirling, the Phoney Major
For those interested in the Second World War, and in particular the SAS and its so called founder, David Stirling, you’re in for a treat. If you’re not aware, then this is the time to start because once you’ve heard my guest Gavin Mortimer dismantle the fairy tale that’s currently out there, you’ll sound like an absolute expert on the subject. As you heard at the top, David Stirling was not the founder, it was his brother Bill, and Paddy Mayne was the real star of the SAS. Gavin’s book The Phoney Major is out now, so do read this fantastic tale.
Episode Twenty One
Jubilee Special: Tessa Dunlop on the Queen in the Second World War
A special episode to celebrate the Queen’s jubilee. I’m very fortunate to have a friend of the show return, Tessa Dunlop. Now Tessa is hugely busy, and so she kindly agreed to return to discuss the Queen’s service in the Army during the Second World War.
Tessa will be discussing new material in her paperback, Army Girls: The secrets and stories of military service from the final few women who fought in World War II.
Giles Milton on Berlin after the Second World War
In May 1945 Soviet troops had captured Berlin, and they proceeded to loot the city, and carry out the most horrific abuse of German women. American, British and French troops arrived two months later, and found a desperate and starving population.
Giles Milton has written a brilliant new book, Checkmate in Berlin, about the German capital in the aftermath of the Second World War. In Part One, we discuss that abuse, de-nazification, the Allies and the Soviets in the city, and Churchill’s defining Iron Curtain speech.
Douglas Murray on the War on the West
Douglas Murray is a bestselling writer and broadcaster who has written a new book, The War on the West. In it he argues that those in the West are fortunate, that the West’s history is not all shameful, and that we need face up to those that are seeking to traduce the education system with their strange new ideas. We must remember the past is a foreign country, they do things differently there. We chat Winston Churchill, racist gardens, Critical Race Theory, suggested changes to education and right at the start, the Bloody Sunday Inquiry.
You can get The War on the West here: https://amzn.to/3vuVMGE
Gordon Corrigan on Tipping Points of History: The Peloponnesian War, the American Civil War and Stalingrad
I chat with Gordon Corrigan, acclaimed historian and author of Tipping Points of History: The Battle of Aegospotami. We discuss the clash between Athens and Sparta in the 5th century BC, and what the world would be like had the Athenians won. We then discuss the American Civil War and what would have happened if the Battle of Atlanta had gone the Confederacy’s way. Would we have two United States of America? The next part is about where we would be had the Germans won their titanic struggle at Stalingrad.
You can get Tipping Points of History here: https://amzn.to/3DEgHts
Nicholas Guyatt on the War of 1812 and the Massacre at Dartmoor Prison
The War of 1812: a memorable event in American history when the might of the British Empire was held at bay. But a fascinating part of the tale was the imprisonment of American POWs in Dartmoor Prison. I chat with Nicholas Guyatt, author of The Hated Cage: An American Tragedy in Britain’s Most Terrifying Prison and in Part One, he sets the scene of the war, describe the life of Privateers, and the prisoners of Dartmoor.
And yes, The Count of Monte Cristo was not published until 1844! If you haven’t read it, do!
You can get a copy of The Hated Cage here: https://amzn.to/3DEgHts
Mandy Robotham on Occupied Norway in WW2, the Lebensborn and the Shetland Bus.
This week’s episode is a chat with bestselling historical fiction author Mandy Robothom, about her new novel The Resistance Girl, which is out 31st March. We discuss the themes of the story, including Nazis with unpleasant aromas, the reprisals against innocent civilians, and the heroism of the resistors to the Nazi jackboot.
You can get a copy of The Resistance Girl here: https://amzn.to/3iJV15a
Peter Stothard on the Assassination of Julius Caesar, and the Ides of March.
The Ides of March is on the 15th March, the anniversary of Caesar’s assassination. Peter Stothard is the author of The Last Assassin: The Hunt for the Killers of Julius Caesar. It’s a brilliant account of the assassination, and the aftermath, featuring Mark Antony, Brutus, Cassius, Octavian and one Cassius Parmensis.
In addition to this, we chat about what it can teach us with Putin, and whether assassination is really what we want. Consequences…In Part Two, we go on to talk about RFK, Abraham Lincoln, Margaret Thatcher and Tony Blair.
You can get hold of Peter’s book here: https://amzn.to/3t5JnIa
David O. Stewart on George Washington, Slavery, his early career and Washington the Politician.
22nd February saw the anniversary of George Washington’s birth, 290 years ago in 1732. I discuss with distinguished historian David O. Stewart his early career, familial relationships and the vexed issue of slavery. Washington owned slaves, and for the first part of his life was comfortable with it, but that view changed once he commanded African American troops during the War of Independence. In the second part we discuss Washington as the politician – his relationship with John Adams, Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson.
You can get hold of David’s book here: https://amzn.to/3pI8LBJ
Episode Thirteen – Parts One & Two
Keith Lowe on the Statue Wars, Hamburg’s bombing of 1943 and the impact of WW2 on Europe
Keith Lowe is an acclaimed historian and author of Prisoners of History, addressing 25 monuments to the Second World War. We discuss holocaust memorials, Soviet statues and the whole debate around what these structures mean for us.
In part two we chat about the bombing of Hamburg in 1943 and the state of Europe in the immediate aftermath of the war.
You can get hold of Keith’s book here: https://amzn.to/3uQwqTF
Episode Twelve – Parts One & Two
Michael Ridpath on Munich 1938, Neville Chamberlain, Communist spies of the 1930s, Iceland and Historical Fiction
Michael Ridpath is a bestselling novelist, and author of Traitor’s Gate, a novel based around the plot against Hitler in 1938, and Neville Chamberlain’s visit to Munich. Traitor’s Gate is our February fiction book of the month.
There is a new Netflix film out so we sat down to discuss the history behind it, and his writing. In Part Two we discuss spying in the 1930s, Icelandic murder mysteries and financial crime.
You can get hold of Michael’s book here: https://amzn.to/3KSj9Qa
Saul David on the SBS in the Second World War, The Charge of the Light Brigade, The Zulu War and Britain joining World War One.
Saul David has written a new book on the SBS. It’s an authorised history, and he was granted unique access to the secretive unit. We discuss their inception, rivalry with the SAS, operations in Europe and the Far East, and other units inspired by them.
We also discuss his new venture the Military History Club and other events in history he’s written about, including the Charge of the Light Brigade, the Zulu War and World War One. We even get to chat about Time Commanders, a show in the 2000s that Saul was a consultant on.
You can get hold of Saul’s book here: https://amzn.to/3oITHTZ
Jeremy Paxman on the History of Coal Mining, the Miner’s Strike & Napoleon
“Scargill was right!”
The legendary presenter of Newsnight and University Challenge talks with me about how the Coal Mining Industry built Britain, the 1984/85 Miners Strike and Arthur Scargill, as well as discussing Napoleon and the two Central American countries of Belize and El Salvador.
You can get hold of Jeremy’s book here: https://amzn.to/3oITHTZ
Episode Nine – Parts One & Two
Andrew Lownie on the Traitor King
Joining me on the podcast is Andrew Lownie, the author of Traitor King: The Scandalous Exile of the Duke & Duchess of Windsor. We talk Nazis, murder, treachery and Andrew’s campaign against the government for access to archives.
You can get hold of Andrew’s book here: https://amzn.to/3oITHTZ
Peter Hughes on the Statue Wars
Peter Hughes is a philospher and psychologist, and has just written his first history book, A History of Love and Hate in 21 Statues. We discuss Colston, Mandela, Douglass and why we all need to find common ground, if we are to continue living happily together.
You can buy Peter’s book here: https://amzn.to/3y09scj
Anne O’Brien discusses the Wars of the Roses and the genre of Historical Fiction.
Anne O’Brien is the Sunday Times bestselling author of The Royal Game and The Queen’s Rival, novels set during the Wars of the Roses. Anne always places strong women firmly at the centre of her stories, whether good or bad. She also has a few words to say to those historians that dismiss historical fiction as just ‘making things up’.
You can buy Anne’s book here: https://amzn.to/3FWjopU
Episode Six – Part One & Two
Robert Lyman, author of A War of Empires, discusses the Far East campaign and the Indian Army in WW2.
Robert Lyman, the acclaimed historian joined us to discuss his new book, War of Empires: Japan, India, Burma & Britain 1941-45. Robert is the author of one of our authorities on the war in the Far East, and has written an acclaimed biography of Bill Slim. We discuss the Indian Army, and how by the end of the war it consisted over over 2 million volunteers, making it a key part of a new independent country. We also discussed the Chinese army and how important it was to the war effort in the region.
In Part Two Robert explains how the Indian Army learnt to fight the Japanese, the sheer waste of life by the Japanese leadership and finally he discusses Bill Slim – was he the greatest British general ever?
You can buy Robert’s book here: https://amzn.to/3nec7eP
Episode Five – Parts One & Two
Tessa Dunlop, author of Army Girls, discuss female veterans of WW2, sexism, the ATS and deaths in combat.
Dr Tessa Dunlop, the bestselling historian joined us to discuss her new book, Army Girls. Tessa is renowned for her impressive oral histories, and she spent one national crisis talking to veterans of WW2 as they recounted their experience of another national crisis. Part Two is now out, and she discusses the challenges faced by women among male troops.
You can buy Tessa’s Book, Army Girls here: https://amzn.to/3mkekox
Episode Four – Parts One & Two
Norman Davies, author of George II: Not Just a British Monarch, discusses slavery
We had the opportunity to discuss with legendary historian Norman Davies, his new book George II: Not Just a British Monarch. In the wake of the previous episode with Andrew Roberts on George III, what about the family that made him? Well, they’re pretty dysfunctional. Norman was also helpful in ensuring I was using the correct language and not looking at the king through a British lens.
In Part Two, Professor Davies continues to tolerate our editor, when discussing George II in his place as a European monarch. We also discuss the King of Slavery, as Norman has recently named him. You can buy Norman’s Book, George II here: https://amzn.to/3aZ60E7
Andrew Roberts, author of George III: The Life & Reign of Britain’s Most Misunderstood Monarch, discusses the American War of Independence and mental illness in the 18th century.
In this week’s Aspects of History podcast, we have Andrew Roberts, acclaimed historian and author of Churchill: Walking with Destiny, Napoleon the Great, Napoleon & Wellington and Masters and Commanders. He discusses his new book, George III, who reigned during tumultuous episodes in world history, including the Seven Years War, the American War of Independence, the French Revolution and the Napoleonic wars, and all the while dealing with a severe mental illness. I hope you enjoy our chat, and please do subscribe and give us a great rating if you do.
Episode Two – Parts One & Two
Sarah Gristwood, author of Tudors in Love: The Courtly Code Behind the Last Medieval Dynasty, discusses the Tudors and their seduction practices in a two part episode.
Sarah’s book is hugely entertaining, describing the romantic techniques, epitomised by the courtly code, employed by the Tudors. In part 1 in which Sarah explains what courtly love was, and then we move on to Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn.
In part 2, Sarah goes on to talk about Anne of Cleves, Edward VI, how the code failed Lady Jane Grey and those favourites of Queen Elizabeth I. The courtly code reached its zenith during Elizabeth’s reign, but as we know, unlike her father she never married.
If you enjoy the podcast, please subscribe and give us a great rating. Up next time, Andrew Roberts talks about George III, king during the American Revolution, and famous for his depiction in The Madness of King George.
Episode One – Parts One & Two
Roger Moorhouse, author of First to Fight: The Polish War 1939, discusses the invasion of Poland in 1939, in a two part episode.
Roger’s book is very important – he explodes myths and uncovers staggering brutality by the 2 totalitarian powers. This podcast is part 1 in which Roger sets the scene, describing the first few days and the Nazi advance.
In Part Two of the podcast, Roger goes on to talk about the myth of cavalry against tanks, what the Poles went through, with numerous atrocities committed by the Nazis and Soviets, and why we in the United Kingdom are not as familiar with the Polish experience as we should be.