A dramatic new departure for international bestselling author Bernard Cornwell, FOOLS AND MORTALS takes us into the heart of the Elizabethan era, long one of his favourite periods of British history.
Fools and Mortals follows the young Richard Shakespeare, an actor struggling to make his way in a company dominated by his estranged older brother, William. As the growth of theatre blooms, their rivalry - and that of the playhouses, playwrights and actors vying for acclaim and glory - propels a high-stakes story of conflict and betrayal.
Showcasing his renowned storyteller's skill, Bernard Cornwell has created an Elizabethan world incredibly rich in its portrayal: you walk the London streets, stand in the palaces and are on stage in the playhouses, as he weaves a remarkable story in which performances, rivalries and ambition combine to form a tangled web of intrigue.
Previously titled Pistols for Two, this collection includes three of Heyer's earliest short stories, published together in book form for the very first time. A treat for all fans of Georgette Heyer, and for those who love stories full of romance and intrigue.Affairs of honour between bucks and blades, rakes and rascals; affairs of the heart between heirs and orphans, beauties and bachelors; romance, intrigue, escapades and duels at dawn. All the gallantry, villainy and elegance of the age that Georgette Heyer has so triumphantly made her own are exquisitely revived in these wonderfully romantic stories of the Regency period.
Inspired by the work of Shirley Jackson and Susan Hill and set in a crumbling country mansion, The Silent Companions is an unsettling gothic ghost story to send a shiver down the spine..
.Newly married, newly widowed Elsie is sent to see out her pregnancy at her late husband's crumbling country estate, The Bridge
.With her new servants resentful and the local villagers actively hostile, Elsie only has her husband's awkward cousin for company. Or so she thinks. For inside her new home lies a locked room, and beyond that door lies a two-hundred-year-old diary and a deeply unsettling painted wooden figure - a Silent Companion - that bears a striking resemblance to Elsie herself...
ABBEY’S BOOKSELLER PICK —— Ignacy Wadowski has taken a new and much younger wife. He is besotted, and whilst Jadwiga is attentive and dutiful, she has not allowed him into her bed. Enlisting the aid of a white witch's potion to renew his youthful vigour, Ignacy is surprised to find it is his youth that is renewed! He hatches a mischievous plan to seduce his wife, who succumbs to his wiles, but of course this leads to trouble, and twisty moral conundrums… A jolly read, full of playfulness, inventive details and entertaining wordwit. Lindy Jones
In a corner of old Poland, near a great forest touched by magic, a baker receives a secret to help his ailing marriage. Enchantment comes but there is also a price to pay.
In a marvel of plotting, a spiral of double-identity comedy, cakes, music and moral conundrums which require the invention of photography, a Count's soiree, a squad of Cossacks and a balloon ride to Rome to sort them out, The Baker's Alchemy brings charm and triumph again to the institution of marriage.
'With its nostalgia for lost youth, rich with puns and word-play, The Baker's Alchemy is like a Brothers Grimm tale for adults, only much funnier. Strange and highly entertaining.' - Mark O'Flynn, author of The Last Days of Ava Langdon
'The Baker's Alchemy has the gleam of a ramarkable imagination and the authenticity of a folk tale. A writer at the top of his powers.' - Barry Oakley, novelist and playwright
'I enjoyed The Baker's Alchemy immensely. The tale embodies a quite wonderful use of language, wry humour and intimate knowledge of the Polish primeval forest. The subtle dislocation of reality in the service of magic is gloriously creative.' - Michael Moran, author
Eleanor of Aquitaine's powerful story is brought to a triumphant and beautiful close by much-loved author Elizabeth Chadwick in the trilogy that began with The Summer Queen and continued in The Winter CrownA loving mother. A betrayed wife. A queen beyond compare.
Imprisoned by her husband, King Henry II, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Queen of England, refuses to let her powerful husband bully her into submission, even as he forces her away from her children and her birthright.
Freed only by Henry's death, Eleanor becomes dowager Queen of England. But the competition for land and power that Henry stirred up among his sons has intensified to a dangerous rivalry.
Eleanor will need every ounce of courage and fortitude as she crosses the Alps in winter to bring Richard his bride, and travels medieval Europe to ransom her beloved son. But even her indomitable spirit will be tested to its limits as she attempts to keep the peace between her warring sons, and find a place in the centres of power for her daughters.
Telemachus's father, Odysseus, went off to war before he was born... and never came back. Aged sixteen, Telemachus finds himself abandoned, his father's house overrun with men pursuing his beautiful mother, Penelope, and devouring the family's wealth. He determines to leave Ithaca, his island home, and find the truth. What really happened to his father? Was Odysseus killed on his journey home from the war? Or might he, one day, return to take his revenge? Telemachus's journey takes him across the landscape of bronze-age Greece in the aftermath of the great Trojan war. Veterans hide out in the hills. Chieftains, scarred by war, hoard their treasure in luxurious palaces. Ithaca re-tells Homer's famous poem, The Odyssey, from the point of view of Odysseus' resourceful and troubled son, describing Odysseus's extraordinary voyage from Troy to the gates of hell, and Telemachus's own journey from boyhood to the desperate struggle that wins back his home... and his father.
Local squire Robert Haslewood is gripped by the prospect of war. Following his boyhood hero, he leaves his family and travels away from their Oxfordshire village to fight for the Parliamentarian cause. Wise Froniga, Robert's cousin, is caught between two worlds. Divided between her Puritan family at the manor house and her relatives in the Romany community, she works to heal those in need. Left behind with her brother, Robert's daughter Jenny grows up under the shadow of conflict. When she encounters mysterious royalist Francis Leyland, she must choose between family loyalty and her own heart. As their lives entwine, the villagers struggle to stay true to their beliefs as war threatens to tear their community apart.
Michael Stone was once a famous author. That was before he went to prison. Now, recently released, Michael needs a new beginning. Weighed down by failure and despair, the town of Silverbridge seems too offer him a quiet, rural escape from the past. Kind, gentle vicar John Wentworth takes Michael under his wing, and introduces him to his family and friends. At the vicarage, John's inexplicably discontented wife Daphne brings up their daughters. Bedridden Harriet, John's former nanny, deals impatiently with a world to which she cannot actively participate. At the family home, Belmaray, Aunt Maria is burdened by the worry of a failing estate. And at the grim little town school is fiery teacher Mary O'Hara, determined to foster change. A story of courage and community, set in the beautiful Devonshire countryside.
When cathedral dean Adam Ayscough encounters clockmaker Isaac Peabody, their unlikely friendship touches the lives of the entire community. Behind the dean's fearsome reputation lies a humble man crippled by shyness. Desperate to leave behind a lasting legacy of goodness, his only wishes are to serve God and his parishioners, and to be loved by his young and dissatisfied wife.
Haunted by the memories of a miserable childhood, gifted clockmaker Isaac Peabody has spent a lifetime perfecting his craft and rejecting all belief in God.
Despite their fundamental differences, both men find a common understanding, and discover that faith can come in many different guises.
Based on a remarkable and little-known true story, Jane Harris's third novel is both a heart-breaking trip into a troubled colonial past, and a stunning act of literary ventriloquism.
Martinique, 1765, and brothers Emile and Lucien are charged by their French master, Father Cleophas, with a mission. They must return to Grenada, the island they once called home, and smuggle back the 42 slaves claimed by English invaders at the hospital plantation in Fort Royal. While Lucien, barely in his teens, sees the trip as a great adventure, the older and worldlier Emile has no illusions about the dangers they will face. But with no choice other than to obey Cleophas - and sensing the possibility, however remote, of finding his first love Celeste - he sets out with his brother on this 'reckless venture'.
With great characters, a superb narrative set up, and language that is witty, bawdy and thrillingly alive, Sugar Money is a novel to treasure.
Early one October morning, Grace's mother snatches her from sleep and brutally cuts off her hair, declaring, `You are the strong one now.' With winter close at hand and Ireland already suffering, Grace is no longer safe at home. And so her mother outfits her in men's clothing and casts her out. When her younger brother Colly follows after her, the two set off on a remarkable journey in the looming shadow of their country's darkest hour
.The broken land they pass through reveals untold suffering as well as unexpected beauty. To survive, Grace must become a boy, a bandit, a penitent and, finally, a woman - all the while afflicted by inner voices that arise out of what she has seen and what she has lost
.Told in bold and lyrical language by an author who has been called 'one of his generation's very finest novelists' (Ron Rash), Grace is an epic coming-of-age novel and a poetic evocation of the Irish famine as it has never been written.
A beautiful new limited edition paperback of The Song of Achilles, published as part of the Bloomsbury Modern Classics list The god touches his finger to the arrow's fletching. Then he breathes, a puff of air - as if to send dandelions flying, to push toy boats over water. And the arrow flies, straight and silent, in a curving, downward arc towards Achilles' back. Greece in the age of heroes. Patroclus, an awkward young prince, has been exiled to the court of King Peleus and his perfect son Achilles. Despite their differences, the boys develop a tender friendship, a bond which blossoms into something deeper as they grow into young men. But when Helen of Sparta is kidnapped, Achilles is dispatched to distant Troy to fulfil his destiny. Torn between love and fear for his friend, Patroclus follows, little knowing that the years that follow will test everything they hold dear.
Rome. AD 55.
The Emperor Claudius is dead. Nero rules. Britannicus, however, has also laid claim to the throne. A bloody power struggle is underway. Prefect Cato and Centurion Macro return from campaign to find Rome in turmoil. All they want is a simple army life, fighting with their brave and loyal men. But thanks to his courage and leadership Cato has caught the eye of rival factions who will stop at nothing to get him on their side. To survive, Cato must play a cunning game, and enlist the help of the one man in the Empire he can trust: Macro.
As the rebel force grows, legionaries and Praetorian Guards are moved like chess pieces by powerful and shadowy figures. A political game has created the ultimate military challenge, where the opposing forces know that only death awaits the losers. Can civil war be averted? The future of the empire is in Cato's hands...
If you don't know Simon Scarrow, you don't know Rome!
The nineteenth novel in Julian Stockwin's acclaimed Captain Kydd series.
1808. Parted from his new bride, Captain Sir Thomas Kydd is called away to join the Northern Expedition to Sweden, now Britain's only ally in the Baltic. Following the sudden declaration of war by Russia and with the consequent threat of the czar's great fleet in St Petersburg, the expedition must defend Britain's dearly-won freedom in the those waters.
However Kydd finds his popular fame as a frigate captain is a poisoned chalice; in the face of jealousy and envy from his fellow captains, the distrust of the commander-in-chief and the betrayal of friendship by a former brother-in-arms now made his subordinate, can he redeem his reputation?
In an entirely hostile sea Tyger ranges from the frozen north to the deadly confines of the Danish Sound - and plays a pivotal role in the situation ensuing after the czar's sudden attack on Finland. This climaxes in the first clash of fleets between Great Britain and Russia in history. To the victor will be the prize of the Baltic!
In a medieval Venice undone by famine and excessive, orgiastic Carnival festivities, the protagonists of The Apothecary's Shop chase a dream of defeating death. The young Costanza, of the noble Grimani family, has disappeared. The family scribe, Edgardo, promises to return the girl to her family, who themselves may not be above suspicion. Doctors, apothecaries, undertakers, Eastern merchants, farmers: everyone seems to be involved in the girl's disappearance. Through Venice's only female doctor, Edgardo discovers Sabbatai's Apothecary, clues to Costanza's disappearance may lie.
The epic novel of action, conspiracy and suspense from bestselling storyteller Robyn Young, author of the Brethren and Insurrection trilogies.
The first in an epic new series from the Sunday Times bestselling author.
1483: A secret war is born...
Jack Wynter is trapped in sun-baked Seville, sent there by his father with a locked box he's been told to guard with his life. A vital task, or just a ruse to get an illegitimate son out of the country?
But, then, when his father is arrested for treason, Jack finds himself at the heart of a deadly conspiracy.
Seeking answers to the mystery he has inherited, Jack returns to England, where his half-brother, Harry, broods bitterly over their father's apparent preference for a bastard son and young Prince Edward is due to become king... unless his uncle, Richard of Gloucester, makes a play for the throne.
Jack Wynter is coming home, to a realm of danger, intrigue and war. Somehow, he is connected to a secret that stretches across Europe, and beyond. A secret with the power to kill him - or make him.