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Swift Fox Steam Co

Recommended Reading

I thought I would do a separate page for books as there are quite a few I can recommend now, I’m going to start with foxes since that is my favourite subject and i will move on to steam further down the page.



Hunter’s Moon

I thought I’d start with fiction first, the book above is probably my favourite in my collection and is one every fox lover should read if they can, it is very accurate portrayal of fox behaviour (with some artistic licence involved) and Garry Kilworth did some good research before he penned this novel and if you own any of the books he listed you will see some references. The book is full of emotion and you get a real sense of following the characters through the many ups and downs they have, I really recommend this book and despite it not being in print you can pick up second-hand copies.

Animals of Farthing Wood Series

This book series by Colin Dann is what got me interested in wildlife and is probably better known for the TV series in the mid 1990’s (my favourite show!), there were several aspects of this book series I liked such as the oath of mutual protection and how all the animals worked together. I’ll admit it wasn’t very realistic or accurate but I still found it inspiring, you can still buy all the books and finally after many years of waiting all three seasons of the TV series are now available on DVD I'm pleased to say!!   

Redwall Series

These books are quite well known and are more anthropomorphic that the other two books above and are mostly fantasy orientated, they are quite enjoyable to read if not a little bit predictable at times. They do feature quite a few fox characters (most of them on the bad side unfortunately!!!) and Brian Jacques has created a unique world around all the characters which spans over twenty books.

Fantastic Mr Fox

Not much to say about this book really as it is pretty much well known throughout the world as is its author. It was recently made into a stop motion animated film by Wes Anderson.

Red Fox

This is a great book by Charles G.D Roberts that tells the story about the life of a red fox and his various adventures in the wild. Despite being published in 1905 it is a really good read and i think it was ahead of its time. Hard copies of this book can still be found second hand, however i also found that you can read this book on the web which i've linked below, this online copy featured some nice illustrations too that my hard copy lacked.

Non fiction

Urban Foxes

This is the first non-fiction book on foxes I owned and is a great read and has some wonderful and humorous illustrations too. If you have read Hunters Moon you will see some references from this book in the novel. Prof Stephen Harris is well known for his work on foxes and is based at Bristol University where the local population of urban foxes is one of the most intensely studied in the world.

Running With The Fox 

This is a fantastic book by David Macdonald showcasing fox behaviour that he has observed over a 15 period, it really has a lot of depth and is an involving read. It is one of the best books i have read that details fox behaviour and is still very relevent today.

Country Foxes

This is a great companion book to go with Urban Foxes by Stephen Harris, it provides a lot of facts and aims to dispell some of myths about foxes and like with Urban Foxes it also features some nice illustrations. It is currently out of print but secondhand copies can still be found.

Animals (Reader's Digest)

This is a great book by Reader's Digest that features a lot of british wildlife including foxes, it has some nice illustrations too. All in all it is a very good reference guide.

Foxwatching: In the Shadow of the Fox

If you are thinking about going out into the field to observe wild foxes then this is the book for you!, it contains a wealth of information regarding watching foxes and gives some good details on common fox behaviour too. The author Martin Hemmington founded the National Fox Welfare Society which is one of the largest fox related charities in the UK and the website along with other fox charities can be found on my links page.

Town Fox, Country Fox

A good all round book on foxes and it features some interesting observations by the author, some of the information is a bit dated but most of it is still relevent and is good for reference. Secondhand copies of this book can still be found quite easily.

Red Fox The Catlike Canine

This is a fantastic book with a lot of references and information, it features a wealth of detail on the cacheing behaviours of Red Foxes amongst many other things. This is another book i highly recommend and it is still in print as far as i know.

The Complete Fox

This is a great book by Les Stocker who founded St Tiggywinkles animal hospital and it contains a lot of information regarding the care he has given to injured foxes and features a lot of practical information.

My Life With Foxes

This is a nice book by the late Eric Ashby which paints a vivid picture of his interactions with foxes, he was well known for his wildlife photography and the book features a lot of fantastic photos of these wonderful creatures. This book was a refreshing change from a lot of the other books i have listed above which are more geared towards research & reference.

Unearthing The Urban Fox

 This is a book that gives good practical advice on humane fox deterrence and also explains fox behavour in urban settings. The book is published by the Fox Project which is a well known charity that looks after and rehabilitates foxes and also gives advice to householders/landowners on fox deterrence, i have a link to their website on my links page above and they can also be found on Facebook.

How To Spot A Fox

This is a fabulous book by David Henry who also wrote the Red Fox book that is listed above. This makes a nice companion to the Foxwatching book by Martin Hemmington and both will come in very useful if you plan to try your hand at observing wild foxes in the field. As well as featuring some good written content the book also features some stunning photography too, both books by this author come highly recommended by myself.


Live Steam Toys: a user’s guide

This book is a great read for both people new to steam engines and those with experience; it is written by a well respected figure in the toy steam community and has lots good information to hand. It also has an up to date list of all of the past and present steam toy manufacturers and some useful contacts.

Toyshop Steam

This is another good book that should be a must have for the toy steam collector, it describes in detail most of Britain’s steam toy manufacturers with lots of nice period photos and adverts. It features quite a bit of detail on the Mamod company, although it is not as comprehensive as the book by Steve Malins from what I have seen (which I do not own).

Bowman Steam Toys & Pond Yachts Vol 1

This is a great book for anyone interested in the Bowman range of steam engines, yachts and trains. It has a wealth of information, not just on the engines but also the family behind them and contains lots of period photos and scans from old catalogs. 

Toy Steam Engines

This is another great book about toy steam engines and features some nice period illustrations and photographs, the text is well written and is an enjoyable read and it has a useful reference to the various makers marques that you may encounter. This book along with the Model Steam Engine book are still in print and are easy to get hold of.

Model Steam Engines

This is the companion book to Toy Steam Engines and it covers the model engineering side of steam engines, it is wirtten by the same author and is a very good read and has some nice illustrations as well as photos.

Toy Steam Accessories

This book lists a lot of steam toy accessories made by many manufacturers (mostly German) over the years. This book is pefect if you have an interest in or collect accessories as it features different marques and has many photos and ilustrations.

Building Simple Model Steam Engines Vol 1 & 2

These two books are great if you are thinking about having a go at building your own steam engine, they feature a lot of plans for different engines and comprehensive instructions. Two must have books for the home machinist/engine builder.

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