Between the Coverts

Between the Coverts

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A delightful compendium that every shooting person will relish full of fascinating facts, tips and advice, A-Z of game species and a mixture of classic shooting stories, both true and fictional.



Following the success and popularity of The Deer Stalker's Bedside Book (2015), Charles Smith-Jones has now produced a new work, Between the Coverts, which will appeal to game shooters of every kind.

A glance at the A to Z section of quarry species gives a very good idea of the scope of the book, which ranges from the commonplace to the unusual. Of course, there are entries for pheasant and partridge (both grey and redleg), but also for black grouse, ptarmigan and golden plover, plus the various species of goose and duck. The author describes them in detail – their appearance, their habitats and their habits. He does not ignore the four-legged quarry either, as hare, squirrel and rabbit, for example are all included too. So whatever your chosen quarry, you will find an accurate description, as well as an unusual fact, a tip for improving your equipment or your technique, or a useful titbit of information that will not only stand you in good stead for your shooting day but also increase your enjoyment.

In other sections, the author's sound advice covers all sorts of topics, from choosing your gun and cartridges, how best to look after your equipment, basic etiquette if you are a guest, hints for safe shooting and an invaluable list of 'keeper's tips', plus ideas about storing game. Interspersed throughout the text are anecdotes, shooting quotations and snippets of fascinating information; and, of course, there is a welcome reappearance of the characters from the fictional Glen Garron estate. We are also introduced to a previously unknown regiment, the Glamorgan Fusiliers, whose exploits and eccentricities will strike a chord for any reader with a military background.

The author's ability to provide a carefully researched historical perspective to the sport of game shooting – the development of firearms and shooting techniques over the centuries – can only add to the keen shot's understanding of his or her sport. Facts are explained and myths exploded against a background of great experience and deep knowledge, but always with huge enthusiasm and a liberal dose of wit and humour. You are bound to find something within this very readable book's pages that you didn't know before: and whether you are an experienced shot or a novice, you will find plenty to inform, entertain and amuse. Should you be looking for a present to take to the host of your shooting day, look no further!


A lifelong countryman with a love of natural history, Charles Smith-Jones has always been at his happiest with a shotgun, rifle or fishing rod in his hand or a hawk on his fist.  He has a special fascination for deer which he has actively stalked and managed for almost 35 years, with wide experience across the British species. He currently lectures in Game and Wildlife Management at Sparsholt College in Hampshire where he teaches the new generation of gamekeepers and other countryside custodians. He is a regular contributor to Shooting Times and Deer magazines, and has written Muntjac: Managing an Alien Species which received widespread praise as a groundbreaking work on the subject, The Deer Stalker's Bedside Book (9781846892066) published in 2015, and now Between the Coverts.

Book Specifications

Additional Information

Sub Heading The Shooter's Bedside Book
ISBN 9781846892257
Author Charles Smith-Jones
Binding Hardback
Extent 234 x 156 mm, 224 pages
Illustrations Sepia drawings
Ebook No

"Whatever the shooter's chosen quarry, within this book he or she will find accurate descriptions, tips on improving techniques and some unusual facts, interspersed with beautiful vignettes by sporting artist Will Garfitt. The author provides a careful and researched historical perspective on the shooting sport. With facts explained and myths exploded, and doses of wit and humour throughout, this is a read not to be missed."  — Sporting Shooter


"Amongst the amusing anecdotes and tales, tall and short, there is crammed a wealth of facts and short snippets about guns, shooting, and the sporting scene, not forgetting the ‘Keeper’s Tips’ that occur throughout the book. Delightfully illustrated by Will Garfit this is a volume to dip into, pick up and put down at will. There is something for every shooter here, and each page is guaranteed to bring a smile to the face."  — Deer, British Deer Society 

"Smith-Jones has a deep love of wildlife, the country and our sport and this shows through in every page. I found myself dipping into this book when I had a free moment. I learned a lot more about our sport and this was often combined with a wry smile. If you are looking for a book that can be digested in bite-sized pieces and help you get more out of your sport, then Between the Coverts is it."  — Sporting Gun

"For those that have a passion for field sports, the book is a goldmine of information and one to dip into at any time. The book is comprehensive, ranging from deer stalking to shooting rabbits and wood pigeons. It should definitely be on the bookshelves of sportsmen, and it would make an ideal present for a shooting companion".  — Ray Collier, Highland News Group

"Anecdotes, unusual facts, and an absorbing A-Z of game species combine to make this perfect bedtime reading for fieldsports enthusiasts, as its title suggests. Charles Smith-Jones lectures in game and wildlife management at Sparsholt College, Hampshire, and says of his book, “Its purpose is not to make you a better shot, though I hope you may find a useful tip or two in it.” Rest assured, you will."  — Shooting Times

"The author’s extensive knowledge across a range of topics is clear to see and the ease in which he conveys the information makes this book suitable for both a seasoned game shooter and a novice to the sport. I wouldn’t hesitate to get this as a present." —  BASC

"Between the Coverts is full of wit and humour and will appeal to game shooters of every kind, from the experienced shot to the complete novice. The book is laced with unusual facts and observations, carefully researched by its enthusiastic author. Not just an amusing read, there is plenty of hard facts and helpful advice as well. Dotted throughout are delightful vignettes by Will Garfit, whose pen and ink capture so beautifully and lightly the precious moments of the shooting field."  — National Gamekeepers Organisation 

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