1870s Sicily. Much to the displeasure of Vigata's stubborn populace, the town has just been unified under the Kingdom of Italy. They're now in the hands of a new government they don't understand, and they definitely don't like.
Eugenio Bortuzzi has been named Prefect for Vigata, a regional representative from the Italian government to oversee the town. But the rowdy and unruly Sicilians don't care much for this rather pompous mainlander nor the mediocre opera he's hell-bent on producing in their new municipal theater. The Brewer of Preston, it's called, and the Vigatese are revving up to wreak havoc on the performance's opening night ...
A Union veteran several times over, Bobby Hale has repeatedly deserted and re-enlisted under different names to earn the enlistment bonus. After the civil war, he sets his heart on California, but only makes it as far as Montana. Now after shooting the wrong people he has to evade not only the US Army but also the native population. Against the growing conflict of the Great Sioux War, Bobby is travelling across the harsh horizon to make it back to Eveline, a poker-playing wagon owner who has taught him that he does not have to spend his life alone. Within miles of the woman he believes can save him, Hale's trigger finger lands him in trouble again, changing the course of his journey and setting him on a heart-stopping adventure across the Great Plains. Across ten years and thousands of hard-won miles, Bobby comes to understand the wilderness through those he encounters: the pioneers on the wagon trail who follow the glittering promise of gold; a Crow Brave who shows him meaning of real freedom and strength; and the militia men, still carrying the scars of the recent war, whose hatred of Injuns is even stronger than their fear. Far as the Eye Can See is the story of life in a place where every minute is an engagement in a kind of war of survival, and of how two people in the midst of such majesty and violence can manage to find a pathway to their own humanity.
The royal house of France has fallen. Charles IV is dead, fulfilling the curse of the Templars once and for all. This leaves the path to the throne open for Robert of Artois to place his cousin, Philippe of Valois, upon it. Having committed fraud, perjury and murder in the name of the new king, Robert expects to receive a title and his full reward. But the days of betrayal are far from over and Robert is banished to England. In the land of France's enemies vengeance sparks fresh conflict as King Edward III and his new ally prepare for war. As swords are sharpened the lion wakes and a pretender threatens France once more...
Available for the first time in English, The King Without a Kingdom is the seventh and final volume of The Accursed Kings series. The reign of the Capetian kings has ended and John II, 'The Good', second of the Valois dynasty, has taken the throne. Under his leadership the Hundred Years War, one of the longest and bloodiest conflicts in history, escalates and England and France begin to tear each other apart. Cardinal Perigord, narrating the drama, shows us a monarch as vain and cruel as he is incompetent. Under his turbulent reign, warring factions plunder the land, famine threatens the people and the Black Death spreads far and wide. France is bleeding to death around the new king.
The year is 1864. Sister Thomas Josephine, an innocent Visitantine nun from St Louis, Missouri, is making her way west to the promise of a new life in Sacramento, California. When an attack on her wagon train leaves her stranded in Wyoming, Thomas Josephine finds her faith tested and her heart torn between Lt. Theodore F. Carthy, a man too beautiful to be true, and the mysterious grifter Abraham C. Muir. Falsely accused of murder she goes on the run, all the while being hunted by a man who has become dangerously obsessed with her. Her journey will take her from the most forbidding mountain peaks to the hottest, most hostile desert on earth, from Nevada to Mexico to Texas, and her faith will be tested in ways she could never imagine.
Nunslinger is the true tale of Sister Thomas Josephine, a woman whose desire to do good in the world leads her on an incredible adventure that pits her faith, her feelings and her very life against inhospitable elements, the armies of the North and South, and the most dangerous creature of all: man.
Elizabeth of Lancaster Sister. Wife. Traitor. One betrayal is all it takes to change history...
June, 1380: Elizabeth Plantagenet - seventeen years old, spoilt, headstrong, fun-loving and intelligent - is about to be married. The Earl of Pembroke is an advantageous choice for all concerned, except Elizabeth, as the Earl is only eight years old. June, 1386: Scandalously pregnant by Sir John Holland, Duke of Exeter, whilst still married to the Earl, Elizabeth is hastily married again. As half-brother to King Richard II, Sir John is a man known to all for both his charm and self-interested scheming. Soon Elizabeth is drawn into the heart of a dangerous rebellion with her brother, King Henry IV, on one side, and her husband on the other. As tensions become a matter of life or death, Elizabeth is presented with an impossible choice of where to give her loyalty.
Christmas 1863. Seventeen-year-old Richard Shenstone has been sent down from Cambridge under a cloud of suspicion. Addicted to opium and tormented by disturbing sexual desires, he finds temporary refuge in the creaking old mansion inhabited by his newly impoverished mother and his sister, Effie, whose behaviour grows increasingly bizarre. Threatening letters circulate among the locals, where almost anyone can be considered a suspect in a series of crimes and misdemeanours ranging from vivisection to murder.
Fans of Charles Palliser's books, as well as readers of Sarah Waters and Michel Faber, will delight in this, his first new novel in over ten years.
Safiye had more to worry about than simply birthing this child. Her only son might not live to hear the call for morning prayers. If there ever was a time when the Empire required a male heir it was now. In the opulent royal palace of Murat III, on the shores of Constantinople, midwife Hannah Levi is charged with ensuring the Sultan's harem provides him with a male heir. If she fails, the entire Ottoman Empire will collapse. But the slave girl who has been stolen away to be the Sultan's latest concubine is not all she seems...
More info The epic first instalment in a sequence of novels set at the end of the Roman Empire, during the reign of the Emperor Constantine.
Centurion Aurelius Castus - once a soldier in the elite legions of the Danube - believes his glory days are over, as he finds himself in the cold, grey wastes of northern Britain, battling to protect an empire in decline. When the king of the Picts dies in mysterious circumstances, Castus is selected to guard the Roman envoy sent to negotiate with the barbarians beyond Hadrian's Wall. Here he will face the supreme challenge of command, in a mission riven with bloodshed and treachery, that tests his honour to the limit. As he struggles to avert disaster and keep his promise to a woman he has sworn to protect, Castus discovers that nothing about this doomed enterprise was ever what it seemed.
Flodden , September 1513. Across a boggy valley, two armies confront each other. The Scots, backed by European allies, have superior numbers and the latest cannon to challenge a depleted English force. The English are furious and humiliated that they are not fighting alongside King Henry against their real enemy in France. The Battle of Flodden would prove one of the bloodiest ever fought on British soil, shaping Scottish national identity to this day. Sir Thomas Howard, shrewd but ancient, leads the English forces. Alexander, 3rd Lord Hume, bold but impetuous, leads the Scots. Isabella Hoppringle, Abbess of Coldstream, young and determined, struggles to keep her footing among the tides of violence. John Heron, Bastard of Ford, swaggering, violent, and disreputable, the black sheep of a good English family, finds profit while men die. Blood Divide sets us right at the heart of the action; the stink, sweat and fear, the curtain of red mist.
Forced to flee Rome from the barbaric rampages of the Ostrogoths, merchant Nicander meets an unlikely ally in the form of Marius, a fierce Roman legionary. Escaping to a new life in Constantinople, the two land upon its shores lonely and penniless. Needing to make money fast, they plot and plan a number of outrageous money-making schemes, until they chance upon their greatest idea yet.Armed with a wicked plan to steal precious silk seeds from the faraway land of Seres, Nicander and Marius must embark upon a terrifyingly treacherous journey across unknown lands, never before completed. But first they must deceive the powerful emperor Justinian and the rest of his formidable Byzantine Empire in order to begin their journey into the unknown...An adventurous tale of mischief, humour and deception, Nicander and Marius face danger of the highest order, where nothing in the land of the Roman Empire is quite what it seems.
More infoBroadstairs, Kent, 1850. Part sea-bathing resort, part fishing village, this is a place where people come to take the air, and where they come to hide...
Delphine and her sister Julia have come to the seaside with a secret, one they have been running from for years. The clean air and quiet outlook of Broadstairs appeal to them and they think this is a place they can hide from the darkness for just a little longer. But this is a town with its own secrets, and a dark past. And when the body of a young girl is found washed up on the beach, a mysterious message scrawled on the sand beneath her, the past returns to haunt the town, and they cannot escape what happened here years before...
A compelling story of secrets, lies and lost innocence.