We can never say it enough; your best chance of survival is to be prepared and arm yourself with the right skills before a crisis happens. While the dark nights, stormy weather and Christmas approaching might not be filling you with enthusiasm to get outdoors as much, don’t forget you can still be brushing up your survival knowledge while you cosy up on the sofa in your pyjamas.
Obviously there are many, many fantastic books out there which makes it hard to choose a shortlist from but here are five of the most popular survival themed books currently available, with something to appeal to all tastes, whether you want to keep your own brain active in the bleak mid-winter or you are searching for the perfect gift for the survival enthusiast in your life.
John ‘Lofty’ Wiseman
Written by a former SAS soldier and survival instructor, this is considered by many to be the ultimate handbook to cover all scenarios and situations. It was first published in 1986 and has sold millions of copies to date. Look out for the most recent third edition, which has been updated to include a useful section on urban survival.
It’s near impossible to collate a shortlist of survival books without mentioning this man, who also happens to be a prolific writer and author of both fiction and non-fiction, making it hard to choose which titles to suggest reading. Among his offerings are comprehensive survival manuals, however, we think his autobiography gives an interesting insight into the man behind the TV persona, whether you are a fan or not. Even those members of the family who have no interest in survival should be entertained by this read.
A New York Times bestseller, this is a manual written for those with an interest in wilderness survival. The author is an American survivalist expert, so some sections regarding wild food won’t necessarily apply to the UK, but the information is clear and concise, a great resource for beginners and improvers to learn all the essential skills and knowledge needed in the wild. Further titles in the series; Advanced Bushcraft, The Bushcraft Field Guide to Trapping, Gathering and Cooking and Bushcraft First Aid are all available as a nicely presented box set.
100 Deadly Skills: The SEALS Guide to Eluding Pursuers, Evading Capture and Surviving Any Dangerous Situation. It may have a long title, but this guide written by a former US Navy SEAL is detailed yet clearly presented in an infographic, almost comic book format. One that is sure to appeal to the older children and teenagers that already have an interest in survival or to those that you would like to gently persuade to think about their personal safety and survival, even in urban environments The same author has also written 100 Deadly Skills: The Survival Edition, which follows the same format but focuses more on wild survival.
This Collins Gem might be a tiny book, but it is packed full of invaluable information about where and how to find wild food across the British Isles, as well as additional information about countryside rules and laws around foraging. Keep it in your pocket whenever you go on outdoor adventures, you can even use it to get children involved in spotting and identifying edible wild food.