A life in the spotlight will keep anyone hidden Julia Pastrana is the singing and dancing marvel from Mexico, heralded on tours across nineteenth-century Europe as much for her talent as for her rather unusual appearance. Yet few can see past the thick hair that covers her: she is both the fascinating toast of a Governor's ball and the shunned, revolting, unnatural beast, to be hidden from children and pregnant women. But what is her wonderful and terrible link to Rose, collector of lost treasures in an attic room in modern-day south London? In this haunting tale of identity, love and independence, these two lives will connect in unforgettable ways.
1000 BC. The Second Iron Age. The time of King David. Anointed as the chosen one when just a young shepherd boy, David will rise to be king, grasping the throne and establishing his empire. But his journey is a tumultuous one and the consequences of his choices will resound for generations. In a life that arcs from obscurity to fame, he is by turns hero and traitor, glamorous young tyrant and beloved king, murderous despot and remorseful, diminished patriarch. His wives love and fear him, his sons will betray him. It falls to Natan, the courtier and prophet who both counsels and castigates David, to tell the truth about the path he must take. With stunning originality, acclaimed author Geraldine Brooks offers us a compelling portrait of a morally complex hero from this strange age - part legend, part history. Full of drama and richly drawn detail, THE SECRET CHORD is a vivid story of faith, family, desire and power that brings David magnificently alive.
From the day it was stolen from me I had dreamed of recapturing Bebbanburg. The great fort was built on a rock that was almost an island, it was massive, it could only be approached on land by a single narrow track - and it was mine. Britain is in a state of uneasy peace. Northumbria's Viking ruler, Sigtryggr, and Mercia's Saxon Queen Aethelflaed have agreed a truce. And so England's greatest warrior, Uhtred of Bebbanburg, at last has the chance to take back the home his traitorous uncle stole from him so many years ago - and which his scheming cousin still occupies. But fate is inexorable and the enemies Uhtred has made and the oaths he has sworn combine to distract him from his dream of recapturing Bebbanburg. New enemies enter into the fight for England's kingdoms: the redoubtable Constantin of Scotland seizes an opportunity for conquest and leads his armies south. Britain's precarious peace threatens to turn into a war of annihilation. But Uhtred is determined that nothing, neither the new enemies nor the old foes who combine against him, will keep him from his birthright. He is the Lord of Bebbanburg, but he will need all the skills he has learned in a lifetime of war to make his dream come true.
In his new novel, Rule of Law, Winton Higgins creatively accounts for the drama of the first Nuremberg trial of 1945-6, where the atrocities of the Third Reich were uncovered for a world-wide audience for the first time. Concepts we take for granted now - crimes against humanity, a world court, an international criminal justice system - were bom and nurtured in Nuremberg.
Winton Higgins has used the medium of a novel to bring this history to life. It is very much a story for our time. Winton Higgins has wisely chosen the novel form to tell his story, rather than write an academic history (rather as Thomas Keneally did with his documentary novel Schindler's Ark).
"This is a gripping story of one of the great moments in history. When the victorious Allies of the Second World War decided to put the tyrants of the Nazi regime on public trial at Nuremberg for crimes against humanity. The symbolism was electric. The drama was overwhelming. The emotions wretched. And it had to be worked out in conditions of bombed out devastation and with no effective precedents. Across the pages walk historical characters, some of them familiar. But interwoven with their lives are human tales of great power, added by the author to remind us that this was a raw human drama. Once started, I could not put this book down." Hon. Michael Kirby, past Justice of the High Court of Australia and chair of the UN Commission of inquiry on North Korea.
"A fascinating novel, that captures the drama of history's most important trial which laid the foundation for international criminal law. This gripping account uses fiction to bring to life the personalities, principles and philosophies that contributed to the delivery of justice at Nuremberg." Geoffrey Robertson QC
New York, 1888. Gas lamps still flicker in the city streets, but the miracle of electric light is in its infancy. The person who controls the means to turn night into day will make history - and a vast fortune. A young untested lawyer named Paul Cravath, fresh out of Columbia Law School, takes a case that seems impossible to win. Paul's client, George Westinghouse, has been sued by Thomas Edison over a billion-dollar question: Who invented the light bulb and holds the right to power the country? The task facing Cravath is truly daunting - win. And the stakes are immense: the winner of the case will illuminate America. In obsessive pursuit of victory, Paul crosses paths with Nikola Tesla, an eccentric, brilliant inventor who may hold the key to defeating Edison, and with Agnes Huntington, a beautiful opera singer who proves to be a flawless performer on stage and off. As Paul takes greater and greater risks, he'll find that everyone in his path is playing their own game, and no one is quite who they seem...
A. N. Wilson's powerful new novel explores the life and times of one of the greatest British explorers, Captain Cook, and the golden age of Britain's period of expansion and exploration. Wilson's protagonist, witness to Cook's brilliance and wisdom, is George Forster, who travelled with Cook as botanist on board the HMS Resolution, on Cook's second expedition to the southern hemisphere, and penned a famous account of the journey. Resolution moves back and forth across time, to depict Forster's time with Cook, and his extraordinary later life, which ended with his death in Paris, during the French Revolution. Wilson once again demonstrates his great powers as a master craftsman of the historical and the human in this richly evoked novel, which brings to life the real and the extraordinary, brilliantly drawing together a remarkable cast of characters in order to look at human endeavour, ingenuity and valour.
As the Spanish Armada approaches Irish shores, Elizabeth I feels the full burden of her royal office. She must not let England fall to her former husband, King Philip of Spain. And Princess Anabel, their daughter, has yet to declare with whom her allegiance and her support lie. Exiled Stephen Courtenay is in France with his brother, Kit, who has his own reasons for avoiding England. But rumblings of war, a sinister plot, and their loyalty to the crown call them home. Yet not even Pippa Courtenay, their sister, gifted with divine sight, can foresee the grave danger that awaits them all. As Queen Elizabeth commits her riches, her honor, and her people to the approaching conflict, she will risk everything even her life to preserve England's freedom.
In a world where no one can be trusted and secrets are currency, one woman stands without fear. Mallory Bright is the only daughter of London's master locksmith. For her there is no lock too elaborate, no secret too well kept. Sir Francis Walsingham, spymaster and protector of Queen Elizabeth - the last of the Tudor monarchs - and her realm, is quick to realise Mallory's talent and draws her into his world of intrigue, danger and deception. With her by his side, no scheme in England or abroad is safe from discovery; no plot secure. But Mallory's loyalty wavers when she witnesses the execution of three Jesuit priests, a punishment that doesn't fit their crime. When Mallory discovers the identity of a Catholic spy and a conspiracy that threatens the kingdom, she has to make a choice - between her country and her heart. Mallory, however, carries her own dark secrets and is about to learn those being kept from her - secrets that could destroy those she loves. Once Sir Francis's greatest asset, Mallory is fast becoming his worst threat... and everyone knows there's only one way Sir Francis deals with those.
Elizaveta is princess of Kiev, but that doesn't stop her chasing adventure. Defying conventions, she rides the rapids of the Dneiper alongside her royal brothers, and longs to rule in her own right as a queen. Elizaveta meets her match when the fearsome Viking warrior Harald Hardrada arrives at her father's court seeking fame and fortune. He entrusts Elizaveta to be his treasure keeper, to hold the keys to his ever-growing wealth - and eventually to his heart. Theirs is a fierce romance and the strength of their love binds them together as they travel across the vast seas to Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Iceland. In 1066, their ambition carries them to Orkney as they plan to invade England and claim the crown ...
John Pearce has to fight on many fronts. First against his pious, now pregnant lover Emily, then her cruel husband Ralph Barclay. He must take on and defeat Admiral Hotham while that officers seek to beat the French and fails twice though a lack of gallantry to press home his advantage. Sea battles, emotional turmoil and downright chicanery mix in a stew of blood and scheming until Pearce discovers two facts that should change his life. But is what is being proposed fit for a man now accustomed to war, a man for whom gallantry is the stuff of life?
The year is 1066, and a great general has won a crushing victory over the English just outside the gates of York. His name is Harald Hardrada, King of the Norse, and he is the most brilliant warrior of his age. Driven into exile as a callow youth, he travelled the known world, deposed emperors, punished the heathens, and took the empress of Constantinople as lover. But there are demons too that he must conquer, and the uncomfortable fact of having a saint for a brother. He has just won his greatest victory, but a week later he too will be dead, and with his death the Viking Age will come to a close. Harald Hardrada is the last of the Vikings. This is his tale.
AD 14: Five long years have passed since the annihilation of three legions in the wilds of Germania. Demoted, battle-scarred and hell-bent on revenge, Centurion Tullus and his legionaries begin their fightback. Ranged against them is the charismatic chieftan Arminius, determined to crush the Romans for a second time. Convinced that the eagle belonging to his old legion is close at hand, Tullus drives ever deeper into enemy lands. But with Arminius and his warriors closing in on the Romans, a murderous battle is about to begin...
Margaret Beaufort and Margaret of Anjou - two women who have fought to the bitter end to see their sons take the English throne. But with her son Edward killed in battle, and imprisoned herself, what next for Margaret of Anjou? And will Margaret Beaufort live to see Richard III deposed, and her son Henry Tudor finally ascend the throne? In this powerful and dramatic conclusion to Livi Michael's Wars of the Roses trilogy, the stakes are higher than ever, the sides are ever-changing, and all will be decided at the Battle of Bosworth...
August 1881: An attractive young married woman, Mabel Todd, arrives in Amherst, Massachusetts, with her husband David, recently appointed assistant professor at Amherst College. The treasurer of the college is Austin Dickinson, the most respected citizen of the town, a married man with three children. Austin's sister Emily lives as a recluse in the Homestead, the house next-door to Austin's family. Over the months that follow the Todds' arrival, Austin falls passionately in love with Mabel, and she with him. October 2013: Alice Dickinson, 24 years old, is struggling with her failure to find a boyfriend. At the same time she wants to escape her copy-writing job and make a living as a screenwriter. She takes time off work to research a screenplay on a story that has fascinated her since college days, where a love of Emily Dickinson's poems was triggered by the coincidence of her own surname.The story is the illicit love affair between Austin Dickinson and Mabel Todd. The novel interweaves the stories of these two love affairs: the unfolding one between Alice and Nick, an older man she meets in Amherst, and the original love affair between Austin and Mabel, observed by Emily.
From Darwin to Pearl Harbour, Sydney to Papua New Guinea, a compelling story of courage, honour and a great love set against the epic backdrop of the Second World War Eighteen-year-old Junie Wallace is a smart girl and, with her two brothers away at war and her third brother just killed in action, she knows there is only one way to save the family farm for her grieving parents. Unfortunately, that solution involves marrying the unscrupulous Ernest, and breaking the heart of the young drover she loves, Michael. But the war is looming ever closer, and when Pearl Harbour brings the threat of Japanese aggression to Australian shores, the fates of many becomes inextricably interwoven. From the explosive battles of the Pacific campaign to the desperate fighting in the Papuan New Guinea rainforest; the dancehall gaiety of Sydney's Trocadero to the terror of the Darwin bombings, this epic family saga brings home the importance of mateship and of fighting for what you believe in, even when impossible odds seem stacked against you, even when all seems lost...Worth Fighting For is a resounding testament to the enduring force of love: a reminder of what can be achieved if you draw on your reserves of courage and listen to the truth in your heart.
Egypt is under fire. The ancient city of Luxor is under attack. Pharaoh Tamose lies mortally wounded. All seems lost. Taita prepares for the enemy's final, fatal push. The ex-slave, now general of Tamose's armies, is never more ingenious than when all hope is dashed. And this is Egypt's most desperate hour. With the timely arrival of an old ally, Taita's army repels the enemy invaders; for now at least. But upon his return to Luxor, Taita is seized and branded a traitor. Tamose is dead and a poisonous new era has begun. The new Pharaoh has risen. Pharaoh Utteric is young, weak and cruel, and threatened by Taita's influence within the palace - especially his friendship with Utteric's younger and worthier brother, Ramases. With Taita's imprisonment, Ramases is forced to make a choice: help Taita escape and forsake his brother, or stay silent and condone Utteric's tyranny. To a good man like Ramases, there is no choice. Taita must be set free, Utteric must be stopped and Egypt must be reclaimed. From the glittering temples of Luxor to the Citadel of Sparta, Pharaoh is an intense and powerful novel magnificently transporting you to a time of threat, blood and glory.
Unputdownable naval action from the master of the sea story - 'In Stockwin's hands the sea story will continue to entrance readers across the world' Guardian 1807. Captain Sir Thomas Kydd's famous sea action aboard Tyger has snatched his reputation from ignominy. He is the hero of the hour. But though Britain's Navy remains imperious, a succession of battles has seen Napoleon victorious on mainland Europe. In an attempt to prevent the French from taking control of Denmark's navy, Kydd's great friend Nicholas Renzi - now Lord Farndon - is sent on a desperate diplomatic mission to persuade the Danes to give up their fleet to Britain. But the Danes are caught between two implacable forces and will not yield, opting instead for the inferno of battle...