Jane Seymour is a shy, dutiful fifteen-year-old when her eldest brother, Edward, brings his bride home to Wolf Hall. Katherine Filliol is the perfect match for Edward, as well as being a breath of fresh air for the Seymour family, and Jane is captivated by the older girl. Over the course of a long, hot country summer, the two become close friends and allies, while Edward is busy building alliances at court and advancing his career. However, only two years later, the family is torn apart by a dreadful allegation made by Edward against his wife. The repercussions for all the Seymours are incalculable, not least for Katherine herself. When Jane is sent away, to serve Katharine of Aragon, she is forced to witness another wife being put aside, with terrible consequences. Changed forever by what happened to Katherine Filliol, Jane comes to understand that in a world where power is held entirely by men, there is a way in which she can still hold true to herself.
If Elizabeth Bennet had the washing of her own petticoats, Sarah thought, she would be more careful not to trudge through muddy fields. It is wash-day for the housemaids at Longbourn House, and Sarah's hands are chapped and bleeding. Domestic life below stairs, ruled tenderly and forcefully by Mrs Hill the housekeeper, is about to be disturbed by the arrival of a new footman smelling of the sea, and bearing secrets. For in Georgian England, there is a world the young ladies in the drawing room will never know, a world of poverty, love, and brutal war.
Travelling home from the bloody battlefields of the Holy Land, the Crusader King Richard the Lionheart is shipwrecked in the Mediterranean after an encounter with pirates. He should be protected by a papal decree, but he is betrayed and captured by the Duke of Austria - a man who has good reason to loathe him - and is immediately claimed by the Holy Roman Emperor, who also bears him a bitter grudge. Richard is to spend fifteen months imprisoned, much of it in the notorious fortress at Trefils, which few men ever left. Meanwhile, his mother, Eleanor of Aquitaine, is moving heaven and earth to raise a staggering ransom, travelling across Europe herself to buy the release of her favourite son. But her determination may not be enough. At the eleventh hour, the Duke announces that he has had a better offer from the French king, Philippe, and Richard's own treacherous brother, John. They will pay an even larger sum to continue Richard's captivity - or to turn him over to their tender mercies. Told with masterful insight and rich historical detail, A King's Ransom is a striking portrayal of the darker, troubled years of Richard - a man whose courage, compassion and intelligence became the stuff of legend.
The seventh novel in Anthony Riches' acclaimed Empire sequence brings Marcus Aquila back to Rome, hunting the men who destroyed his family. But the revenge he craves may cost him and those around him dearly. The young centurion's urge to exact his own brutal justice upon the shadowy cabal of assassins who butchered his family means that he must face them on their own ground, risking his own death at their hands. A senator, a gang boss, a praetorian officer and, deadliest of all, champion gladiator Mortiferum - the Death Bringer - lie in wait. The knives are unsheathed, and ready for blood ...
A mystery unsolved to this day A mystic who confounds the cynics A writer looking for the story that will make his name A ghost ship appears in the mist. To the struggling author Arthur Conan Doyle, it is an inspiration. To Violet Petra, the gifted American psychic, it is a cruel reminder. To the death-obsessed Victorian public, it is a fascinating distraction. And to one family, tied to the sea for generations, it is a tragedy. In salons and on rough seas, at seances and in the imagination of a genius, these stories converge in unexpected ways as the mystery of the ghost ship deepens. But will the sea yield its secrets, and to whom? Intricate, atmospheric, and endlessly intriguing, The Ghost of the Mary Celeste is a spellbinding exploration of love, loss and the fictions that pass as truth.
The haunting story of the mother of the Tudors, Elizabeth of York, wife to Henry VII. Beautiful eldest daughter of Edward IV and Elizabeth Woodville - the White Queen - the young princess Elizabeth faces a conflict of loyalties between the red rose and the white. Forced into marriage with Henry VII, she must reconcile her slowly growing love for him with her loyalty to the House of York, and choose between her mother's rebellion and her husband's tyranny. Then she has to meet the Pretender, whose claim denies the House of Tudor itself.
CORRUPTION, BETRAYAL, MURDER: games the Romans play best. A turbulent frontier province, rotten with corruption and seething with hatred of Rome - a barbarian god whose devotees may include a murderer - a clever and unscrupulous faith healer who knows everyone's secrets - a boy who struggles toward manhood though stricken with the Sacred Disease: these are the elements in a mystery that Pliny, newly appointed governor of Bithynia, confronts when a high Roman official is found murdered on a desolate hillside, miles from the capital.
1731: When his youngest son is killed in a tragic accident, Sir William Keyt, master of Norton House, buries himself in his fortune. He builds a second vast mansion on his grounds, squandering money he does not have on luxury his family does not want.
Keyt has long been blind to the desires of others. His eldest son has fallen in love with their young maidservant, Molly Johnson, a ray of light in a household dimmed by tragedy. Keyt wants Molly for himself and, driven mad with lust and jealousy, he will do anything to have her...
"Who is the rising star of historical fiction? I say Ben Kane." ~ Wilbur Smith
As Rome's war with Carthage continues, two friends - now on opposing sides - confront each other in one of the most brutal sieges of all time. A new HANNIBAL novel by the Sunday Times bestselling author of The Forgotten Legion series.
213 BC. Syracuse. Under the merciless Sicilian sun, a city is under siege.
Outside the walls, a vast Roman army waits. Yet the city's incredible defences - designed by Archimedes - mean that the city will not be easily taken.
A veteran of the bitter war since its beginning, Quintus is ready to give his life in the service of the Republic. But dangers face him from within his own ranks as well as from the enemy - who include his former friend, the Carthaginian, Hanno.
Hanno has been sent by his general Hannibal to aid Syracuse in its fight against Rome. Pledged to bring death to all Romans, he is diverted from his mission by the discovery of Quintus' sister Aurelia, a captive within the city.
Two friends on opposing sides. A woman caught between them. They are about to meet in one of the most brutal sieges of all time.
September, 1356. Poitiers. The greatest knights of the age were ready to give battle. On the English side Edward, the Black Prince, who'd earned his spurs at Crecy. On the French side, the King and his son, the Dauphin. With 12,000 knights. And then there is William Gold. A cook's boy - the lowest of the low - who had once been branded as a thief. William dreams of being a knight, but in this savage new world of intrigue, betrayal and greed, first he must learn to survive. As rapacious English mercenaries plunder a country already ravaged by plague, and the peasantry take violent revenge against the French knights who have failed to protect them, is chivalry any more than a boyish fantasy?
Sigwulf, a Saxon prince exiled to the court of Carolus, King of the Franks, is summoned by the royal advisor Alcuin of York. Carolus has received magnificent gifts from the Caliph of Baghdad and is determined to send back presents that will be equally sensational. White is the royal colour of Baghdad so the most important gifts will be rare white animals from the Northlands. Sigwulf, having proved himself as a royal agent to Moorish Spain, has been selected to obtain the creatures, then take them to Baghdad. He must find white gyrfalcons and two white polar bears and - as Carolus has seen its picture in a book of beasts - a unicorn. He and his companions travel far into the north. Though they obtain some of the animals, they quickly realize that not all are even real. Setting out for Baghdad with their menagerie, they encounter danger after danger and it seems that someone is trying to wreck their mission ...with each stage of the long journey bringing a new and unexpected peril ...
India. 1837. William Avery, a fresh young officer in the East India Company, arrives in Calcutta expecting to be seduced by its ancient traditions. Nine months later he hasn't learnt a word of Hindustani, is in terrible debt, and longs to return home before the cholera epidemic finishes him off.
A few months earlier, so rumour has it, the infamous and disgraced poet Xavier Mountstuart leaves Calcutta in order to track down the last of the remaining Thugs, a sinister secret fraternity notorious for strangling thousands of travellers. But after reaching the kingdom of Jubbulpore, Mountstuart mysteriously disappears.
Then the Company leads Avery to Jeremiah Blake, an unruly ex-Captain who has embraced native life. Their mission? To cover 700 miles of treacherous road in three weeks and find Mountstuart. A more unlikely duo couldn't be imagined, but they must bury their differences if they wish to succeed - for all is not as it seems, and at the rotten heart of everything lies the secret of the macabre Thugs . . .
'M.J. Carter has cooked up a spicy dish: a pinch of Moonstone, a dash of Sherlock and a soupçon of Fu Manchu added to a rich stew of John Masters. A splendid romp and just the job for a cold winter's evening in front of a blazing fire.' William Dalrymple
'It was years before a Visionist came to the City of Hope. How could I have fathomed that her presence in our small, remote sanctuary - as unforeseen to her as to anyone - would change everything?' Massachusetts, 1842. Fifteen-year-old Polly Kimball sets fire to her family farm, killing her abusive father. With his fiery ghost at her heels, Polly and her young brother seek refuge in a local Shaker community - the City of Hope. Polly has much to hide from this mysterious society of believers, with the local fire inspector on her trail and the ever-present daemons from her past. But when they hail her a 'Visionist', the first their community has known, she is subject to overwhelming scrutiny. Despite being fiercely protected by a young Shaker sister named Charity, a girl who has never known the outside world yet will stake her very soul on Polly's purity, Polly finds herself in danger from forces both sides of the City's walls. And in a world where faith and fear coexist, safety has a price… Rachel Urquhart conjures a cast of extraordinary characters and brings to life one of history's most fabled and mysterious religious movements.
DECEIT, TYRANNY, DEATH. Games the Romans play best. Sextus Ingentius Verpa, imperial senator, notorious informer and scheming minion of the despotic Emperor Domitian, has been butchered in the night. The Emperor has decreed that punishment will be swift and has commissioned Gaius Plinius Secundus - better known as Pliny the Younger - to investigate. Pliny is no detective, but unless he can find the murderer by the close of the 'Ludi Romani', or Roman Games, all Verpa's slaves - forty men and women - will be burned alive in the arena. That gives Pliny just fifteen days. Fifteen days that will threaten Pliny's conscience, his life and the stability of Rome itself.