The First John Grey Historical Mystery
Author: L C. Tyler
Publisher: Felony & Mayhem Press
Two-time Edgar nominee LC Tyler is best known for his series featuring Ethelred and Elsie – a third-rate novelist and his gloriously vulgar agent, respectively. And so he should be: He’s twice won Britain’s “Last Laugh” award for the Best Humorous Mystery of the Year. But with A Cruel Necessity, the first in the John Grey series, Tyler takes a sharp turn into the shadows. There are still some chuckles to be had, but not many: This is England in the year 1657, Oliver Cromwell is in power, and joy has essentially been outlawed. A young lawyer with a taste for beer and pretty women, Grey finds pleasures enough, even in this backwater Essex town, but he’d be wise to keep his amusement to himself: A Royalist spy has been found dead in a local ditch, and Cromwell’s agents are eager – distressingly eager – to explain to Grey that this is nothing to laugh about.
John Grey # 2
Author: L.C. Tyler
Publisher: Felony & Mayhem Press
Len Tyler has been shortlisted for two Edgar awards, won two of England’s “Last Laugh” awards, and racked up more great reviews than he’s had hot dinners: Why would he turn away from the stunningly funny “Elsie and Ethelred” series? Because the intrigues of Cromwell’s England were too juicy to pass up. Tangled in too many of them is John Grey, a newly minted lawyer and would-be ladies’ man with a bad habit of poking his nose into other people’s business. That’s unfortunate, because a mis-delivered letter has left Grey with more information about a murderous plot than it’s entirely safe to know. Can Grey prevent the murder? And of infinitely more importance, can he keep his mouth shut long enough to save his own skin?
Author: L.C. Tyler
Publisher: Hachette UK
The fourth John Grey historical mystery 1666. London has been destroyed by fire and its citizens are looking for somebody, preferable foreign, to blame. Only the royal Court, with its strong Catholic sympathies, is trying to dampen down the post-conflaguration hysteria. Then, inconveniently, a Frenchman admits to having started it together with an accomplice, whom he says he has subsequently killed. John Grey is tasked by Secretary of State, Lord Arlington, with proving conclusively that the self-confessed fire-raiser is lying. Though Grey agrees with Arlington that the Frenchman must be mad, he is increasingly perplexed at how much he knows. And a body has been discovered that appears in every way to match the description of the dead accomplice. Grey's investigations take him and his companion, Lady Pole, into the dangerous and still smoking ruins of the old City. And somebody out there - somebody at the very centre of power in England - would prefer it if they didn't live long enough to conclude their work... Praise for L.C. Tyler 'Tyler juggles his characters, story wit and clever one liners with perfect balance' - The Times 'A cracking pace, lively dialogue, wickedly witty one-liners salted with sophistication . . . Why would we not want more of John Grey?' - The Bookbag
Author: L. C. Tyler
1665, and the Great Plague has London in its grip. Everyone who can has fled and the only sounds are the tolling bells and the incessant cry of 'bring out your dead!'. Where better, then, to hide a murdered man than amongst the corpses on their way to the plague pit? John Grey, now a successful lawyer, is called in by Secretary of State Lord Arlington to investigate an unexpected admission to the Tothill pit. The man was, before his murder, known to be carrying a letter from the Duke of York to the French ambassador. But the letter has vanished and Arlington wants it. Grey soon begins to realise why Arlington is prepared to pay well for the document. The contents will compromise not only the duke but many others around him. But Arlington is not the only one trying to recover the letter. Somebody has killed once to try to obtain it and is prepared to kill again. And Samuel Pepys's offer of help may not be all it seems. So John Grey is forced to set off on a journey through plague-ravaged England to fulfil his commission and keep himself safe from his enemies - if the Plague doesn't get him first.
Author: John Ehle
Publisher: New York Review of Books
First published fifty years ago in 1964 to great acclaim, The Land Breakers is John Ehle's best-known work of historical fiction, chronicling the hard-won settlement of southern Appalachia. A cinematic saga spanning the Revolutionary War years of 1779 to 1784, The Land Breakersrecounts in spare, unflinching prose the challenges, setbacks, and small triumphs of the defiant men and women who were drawn to the wilderness of provincial North Carolina. Eager for opportunity in a land where the easy country had been claimed, Ehle's unforgettable characters stake their lives on the settlement of the unnamed high mountain territory. Strong and silent Mooney Wright is the first to make his way into the forbidding mountains. Others steadily follow- the cruel patriarch Tinkler Harrison, his daughter Lorry, the free-spirited Mina Plover. The Land Breakersis a paean to man's capacity for work, and Ehle imbues the hardworking men and women of his book-the land breakers of this young country-with nobility.
Author: David Benioff
From the critically acclaimed author of The 25th Hour and When the Nines Roll Over and co-creator of the HBO series Game of Thrones, a captivating novel about war, courage, survival — and a remarkable friendship that ripples across a lifetime. During the Nazis’ brutal siege of Leningrad, Lev Beniov is arrested for looting and thrown into the same cell as a handsome deserter named Kolya. Instead of being executed, Lev and Kolya are given a shot at saving their own lives by complying with an outrageous directive: secure a dozen eggs for a powerful Soviet colonel to use in his daughter’s wedding cake. In a city cut off from all supplies and suffering unbelievable deprivation, Lev and Kolya embark on a hunt through the dire lawlessness of Leningrad and behind enemy lines to find the impossible. By turns insightful and funny, thrilling and terrifying, the New York Times bestseller City of Thieves is a gripping, cinematic World War II adventure and an intimate coming-of-age story with an utterly contemporary feel for how boys become men. From the Trade Paperback edition.
Author: Jake Arnott
Newgate Gaol, 1726. An anonymous writer sets down the words of Edgworth Bess as she confides the adventures and misfortunes that led her all too soon to the judgement of London: Cruelly deceived, Bess is cast out onto the streets of the wicked city - and by nightfall her ruin is already certain. What matters now is her survival of it. In that dangerous underworld known in thieves' cant as Romeville, she will learn new tricks and trades. And all begins with her fateful meeting, that very first night, with the corrupt thief-taker general Jonathan Wild. But it is the infamous gaol-breaker, Jack Sheppard, who will lay Romeville at her feet . . . Drawing on the true story that mesmerised eighteenth-century society, the acclaimed author of The Long Firm delivers a tour de force: a riveting, artful tale of crime and rough justice, love and betrayal. Rich in the street slang of the era, it vividly conjures up a murky world of illicit dens and molly-houses; a world where life was lived on the edge, in the shadow of that fatal tree - the gallows. Includes a glossary.
Author: L. C. Tyler
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Inventor of the Sorensen-Birtwistle Revised Scale of Girl-Rage, Chris has a beautiful girlfriend (Virginia), two likeable potential parents-in-law (Hugh and Daphne) and a classic sports car with a leather-covered gear stick. Impending matrimony and the car’s leaking roof seem to be the only clouds on the horizon. But his apparently comfortable world is turned upside down when Hugh dies suddenly and Daphne (after one Irish Cream too many) reveals some shocking information. Meanwhile . . . In an inn, in the Danube Valley, in the seventeenth century, a certain cantankerous philosopher seems to have some words of guidance for our modern-day hero. We join Virginia and Chris (and René) as they seek to uncover the truth about Hugh, themselves and the meaning of life. A Very Persistent Illusion is a hilarious, hugely inventive and thought-provoking novel about love, madness and reality. ‘Compelling and clever, I really couldn’t put it down. A deceptively light read. I laughed out loud’ - Alison Joseph, author of the Sister Agnes Mysteries
Author: Deborah Heal
Publisher: Deborah Heal
Tutoring an eleven-year-old for the summer seemed like the perfect college service project for Abby Thomas. But that was before she found herself in a dilapidated old house in Nowhereville, trying to teach Merridetha sullen girl who doesn't want her help. All she has is a pile of useless, musty old books, and Merrideth's definitely not interested.
A Story of Violent Faith
Author: Jon Krakauer
Category: True Crime
This extraordinary work of investigative journalism takes readers inside America’s isolated Mormon Fundamentalist communities, where some 40,000 people still practice polygamy. Defying both civil authorities and the Mormon establishment in Salt Lake City, the renegade leaders of these Taliban-like theocracies are zealots who answer only to God. At the core of Krakauer’s book are brothers Ron and Dan Lafferty, who insist they received a commandment from God to kill a blameless woman and her baby girl. Beginning with a meticulously researched account of this appalling double murder, Krakauer constructs a multi-layered, bone-chilling narrative of messianic delusion, polygamy, savage violence, and unyielding faith. Along the way he uncovers a shadowy offshoot of America’s fastest growing religion, and raises provocative questions about the nature of religious belief.
Author: Paul Lawrence
Publisher: Allison & Busby
Restoration London, 1664, brought vividly to life, with all the sights, sounds and smells of a teeming city, and loaded with intrigue and crawling with treachery Harry Lytle has just discovered he has a young cousin, Anne Giles. But he's had the pleasure of meeting her for the first time as a corpse. With some robust assistance from David Dowling, a witty, impressively well-built, but hygiene-deficient, butcher, Harry sets out to track down Anne's killer. Together they follow a trail of blood, conspiracy and corruption that takes them to the dark and murky corners of London, featuring a great cast of ne'er-do-wells, cheeky wenches, harmless witches, likeable villains, and a few unsavoury fellows keen on sending Lytle and his companion to an early grave.
Author: John Fowles
Publisher: Little, Brown
In the spring of 1736 four men and one woman, all traveling under assumed names, are crossing the Devonshire countryside en route to a mysterious rendezvous. Before their journey ends, one of them will be hanged, one will vanish, and the others will face a murder trial. Out of the truths and lies that envelop these events, John Fowles has created a novel that is at once a tale of erotic obsession, an exploration of the conflict between reason and superstition, an astonishing act of literary legerdemain, and the story of the birth of a new faith.
A dark and compelling historical murder mystery
Author: AJ MacKenzie
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
A killer is at large and Reverend Hardcastle and Mrs Chaytor are on the case - but with a family feud raging and a vast inheritance at stake, it's going to be a challenge. Will they be able to solve the crime and save the villagers of St Mary from the mur A twisting tale of murder, mystery and eighteenth-century England by a dramatic and gripping new voice in the genre. On the frozen fields of Romney Marsh stands New Hall; silent, lifeless, deserted. In its grounds lies an unexpected Christmas offering: a corpse, frozen into the ice of a horse pond. It falls to the Reverend Hardcastle, justice of the peace in St Mary in the Marsh, to investigate. But with the victim's identity unknown, no murder weapon and no known motive, it seems like an impossible task. Working along with his trusted friend, Amelia Chaytor, and new arrival Captain Edward Austen, Hardcastle soon discovers there is more to the mystery than there first appeared. With the arrival of an American family torn apart by war and desperate to reclaim their ancestral home, a French spy returning to the scene of his crimes, ancient loyalties and new vengeance combine to make Hardcastle and Mrs Chaytor's attempts to discover the secret of New Hall all the more dangerous. The Body in the Ice, with its unique cast of characters, captivating amateur sleuths and a bitter family feud at its heart, is a twisting tale that vividly brings to life eighteenth-century Kent and draws readers into its pages.
(Thomas Hill 3)
Author: Andrew Swanston
Publisher: Random House
The king’s coronation brings hope. Until a murderer strikes. Spring 1661: After years of civil war followed by Oliver Cromwell's joyless rule as Lord Protector, England awaits the coronation of King Charles II. The mood in London is one of relief and hope for a better future. But when two respectable gentlemen are found in a foul lane with their throats cut, it becomes apparent that England’s enemies are using the newly re-established post office for their own ends. There are traitors at work and plans to overthrow the king. Another war is possible. Thomas Hill, in London visiting friends, is approached by the king’s security advisor and asked to take charge of deciphering coded letters intercepted by the post office. As the body count rises and the killer starts preying on women, the action draws closer to Thomas – and his loved ones. He finds himself dragged into the hunt for the traitors and the murderer, but will he find them before it’s too late?
A Novel of Tudor Rivals and the Secret of the Tower
Author: Alison Weir
Publisher: Ballantine Books
In this engrossing novel of historical suspense, New York Times bestselling author Alison Weir tells the dramatic intertwined stories of two women—Katherine Grey and Kate Plantagenet—separated by time but linked by twin destinies . . . . involving the mysterious tragic fate of the young Princes in the Tower. When her older sister, Lady Jane Grey, the Nine Days’ Queen, is executed in 1554 for unlawfully accepting the English crown, Lady Katherine Grey’s world falls apart. Barely recovered from this tragic loss she risks all for love, only to incur the wrath of her formidable cousin Queen Elizabeth I, who sees Katherine as a rival for her insecure throne. Interlaced with Katherine’s story is that of her distant kinswoman Kate Plantagenet, the bastard daughter of Richard III, the last Plantagenet king. In 1483, Kate travels to London for Richard’s coronation, and her world changes forever. Kate loves her father, but before long she hears terrible rumors about him that threaten all she holds dear. Like Katherine Grey, she falls in love with a man who is forbidden to her. Then Kate embarks on what will become a perilous quest, covertly seeking the truth about what befell her cousins the Princes in the Tower, who may have been victims of Richard III’s lust for power. But time is not on Kate’s side, or on Katherine’s. Katherine finds herself a prisoner in the Tower of London, the sinister fortress that overshadowed the lives of so many royal figures, including the boy princes. Will Elizabeth demand the full penalty for treason? And what secrets will Katherine find hidden within the Tower walls? Alison Weir’s new novel is a page-turning story set within a framework of fascinating historical authenticity. In this rich and layered tapestry, Katherine and Kate discover that possessing royal blood can prove to be a dangerous inheritance. Look for special features inside and an excerpt from Alison Weir's Captive Queen. Join the Random House Reader’s Circle for author chats and more. Praise for A Dangerous Inheritance “Highly compelling [with] plenty to keep readers enthralled.”—Historical Novel Review “A page turner . . . too juicy to put down . . . Alison Weir’s strong suit as a fiction writer is making her novels living history.”—The Courier-Journal “With its evident in-depth research and creative twists, this tale of two women trying to make sense of the power of the English crown . . . is nothing short of riveting.”—Library Journal (starred review) “No one alive knows as much about the Tudors as Weir. . . . Any reader of Hilary Mantel’s excellent Tudor evocations will want to explore this book as well.”—Kirkus Reviews “Stunning . . . A richly layered cake of love, sex, danger, death, and mystery.”—Sunday Express (UK)
A Bess Crawford Mystery
Author: Charles Todd
Publisher: Harper Collins
In the latest mystery from New York Times bestselling author Charles Todd, World War I nurse and amateur sleuth Bess Crawford investigates an old murder that occurred during her childhood in India, a search for the truth that will transform her and leave her pondering a troubling question: How can facts lie? Bess Crawford enjoyed a wondrous childhood in India, where her father, a colonel in the British Army, was stationed on the Northwest Frontier. But an unforgettable incident darkened that happy time. In 1908, Colonel Crawford's regiment discovered that it had a murderer in its ranks, an officer who killed five people in India and England yet was never brought to trial. In the eyes of many of these soldiers, men defined by honor and duty, the crime was a stain on the regiment's reputation and on the good name of Bess's father, the Colonel Sahib, who had trained the killer. A decade later, tending to the wounded on the battlefields of France during World War I, Bess learns from a dying Indian sergeant that the supposed murderer, Lieutenant Wade, is alive—and serving at the Front. Bess cannot believe the shocking news. According to reliable reports, Wade's body had been seen deep in the Khyber Pass, where he had died trying to reach Afghanistan. Soon, though, her mind is racing. How had he escaped from India? What had driven a good man to murder in cold blood? Wanting answers, she uses her leave to investigate. In the village where the first three killings took place, she discovers that the locals are certain that the British soldier was innocent. Yet the present owner of the house where the crime was committed believes otherwise, and is convinced that Bess's father helped Wade flee. To settle the matter once and for all, Bess sets out to find Wade and let the courts decide. But when she stumbles on the horrific truth, something that even the famous writer Rudyard Kipling had kept secret all his life, she is shaken to her very core. The facts will damn Wade even as they reveal a brutal reality, a reality that could have been her own fate.
Author: Antonia Hodgson
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
The first thrilling historical crime novel starring Thomas Hawkins, a rakish scoundel with a heart of gold, set in the darkest debtors’ prison in Georgian London, where people fall dead as quickly as they fall in love and no one is as they seem. London, 1727. Tom Hawkins refuses to follow in his father’s footsteps and become a country parson. His preference is for wine, women, and cards. But there’s honor there too, and Tom won’t pull family strings to get himself out of debt—not even when faced with London’s notorious debtors’ prison. The Marshalsea Gaol is a world of its own, with simple rules: Those with family or friends who can lend them a little money may survive in relative comfort. Those with none will starve in squalor and disease. And those who try to escape will suffer a gruesome fate at the hands of its ruthless governor and his cronies. The trouble is, Tom has never been good at following rules, even simple ones. And the recent grisly murder of a debtor, Captain Roberts, has brought further terror to the gaol. While the captain's beautiful widow cries for justice, the finger of suspicion points only one way: do the sly, enigmatic figure of Samuel Fleet. Some call Fleet a devil, a man to avoid at all costs. But Tom Hawkins is sharing his cell. Soon Tom’s choice is clear: get to the truth of the murder—or be the next to die. A dazzling evocation of a startlingly modern era, The Devil in the Marshalsea is a thrilling debut novel full of intrigue and suspense.
(Thomas Hill 1)
Author: Andrew Swanston
Publisher: Random House
Summer, 1643 England is at war with itself. King Charles I has fled London, his negotiations with Parliament in tatters. The country is consumed by bloodshed. For Thomas Hill, a man of letters quietly running a bookshop in the rural town of Romsey, knowledge of the war is limited to the rumours that reach the local inn. When a stranger knocks on his door one night and informs him that the king's cryptographer has died, everything changes. Aware of Thomas's background as a mathematician and his expertise in codes and ciphers, the king has summoned him to his court in Oxford. On arrival, Thomas soon discovers that nothing at court is straightforward. There is evidence of a traitor in their midst. Brutal murder follows brutal murder. And when a vital message encrypted with a notoriously unbreakable code is intercepted, he must decipher it to reveal the king's betrayer and prevent the violent death that failure will surely bring.
Author: L. C. Tyler
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Ethelred Tressider is a crime writer with problems. His latest novel is going nowhere, mid-life crisis is looming and he’s burdened by the literary agent he probably deserves: Elsie Thirkettle, a diminutive but determined individual who claims to enjoy neither the company of writers nor literature of any sort. But however bad things look they can always get worse, as Ethelred discovers when his ex-wife, Geraldine, vanishes close to his Sussex home. When the disappearance becomes a murder enquiry, the police quickly decide that Geraldine Tressider has been the victim of a local serial killer. Elsie begs to differ, on the grounds that the killer’s other victims had been Sad Cows, whereas Geraldine was a Scheming Bitch – another species entirely – and no serious serial killer would murder one in mistake for the other... Soon the indefatigable Elsie has bullied Ethelred into embarking upon his own investigation, but as their enquiries proceed, she begins to suspect that her client’s own alibi is not as solid as he claims. The Herring Seller’s Apprentice is an appallingly funny murder mystery, packed with dizzying plot twists and peopled by a memorable cast of eccentrics. ‘Masterful’ Financial Times ‘A classic detective novel’ Scotsman ‘Unusually accomplished’ Helen Dunmore
The Secret History of the Kennedy Assassination
Author: Philip Shenon
Category: Biography & Autobiography
The best-selling author of The Commission: The Uncensored History of the 9/11 Investigation offers a groundbreaking new history of the Kennedy assassination.