I know that many people have been waiting enthusiastically for this first in my new crime series, so I thought it would be a good idea to let people know it is, at last, ready!
Rebellion's Message is set in the early days of Queen Mary Tudor's reign. Jack Blackjack, who is a somewhat feckless individual, wakes with a sore head to discover that he has been knocked out. Beside him is another fellow, whom Jack recognises as a victim he had been trying to rob, and, more urgently, Jack notices that the fellow appears to be rather dead. Since Jack's dagger is in his own hand, and it and his hand are smeared with blood, Jack hurries away when others raise the hue and cry. Not before making sure he has the man's purse, though.
And thus begins the book. This was a fabulous time (for a crime writer). After the death of Edward VI, Mary came to the throne after some difficulty. Edward had determined to pass over both Mary and Elizabeth in favour of the sixteen-year-old Lady Jane Grey. However, Mary had good spies, and when Edward died, she was already off and heading for Norfolk, where she knew she could rely on the local magnates to protect her. Raising an army, she marched on London, which rose in support of her, considering she had been treated pretty shabbily. And all could have gone swimmingly, had she not been such an ardent Catholic. "Bloody" Mary was determined to persuade people to readopt the faith she relied upon, and to help promote that view, she negotiated with the Spanish to marry the young prince. That led to a Protestant rebellion, later to become known as the Wyatt Rebellion, after the leader of the men who marched on London from Kent, determined to capture Mary and remove her.
However this is not like my other books. It is intentionally more light-hearted, and I really enjoyed putting down Jack Blackjack, an appealing fellow, although one with fairly loose morals! If you want to read a spoiler free review, please check out In Search of the Classic Mystery Novel where the reviewer has given a very fair write up. In fact he has read and reviewed three of my books this month: The Death Ship of Dartmouth, Act of Vengeance, and now Rebellion's Message. I am delighted to say that he has marked all as "Highly Recommended". And I've never even met the fellow!
I hope you enjoy it as much as he did.
But that is not all.
There is a collaborative book, The Sinking Admiral, coming out from Harper Collins on 16th June. This is a collaborative story written by me and other members of the Detection Club.
Later on the last in my Vintener Series, Blood of the Innocents, will be published on 25th August. And finally, there will be a collection of short stories published in November, too. I think Jecks readers need to start saving!
I hope that is enough to whet your appetite. Do please get in contact with any questions or comments, and I look forward to hearing from you.
Happy reading, and I hope you have a wonderful summer.
That nice Puzzle Doctor has just announced his In Search of the Classic Mystery Novel Book of the Month for April: and he seems to have had trouble making up his mind. But here's what he said:
Act of Vengeance is a gripping spy thriller but that's not my favourite genre, so it's down to one of the finest entries in one of my favourite series, the Knight(s) Templar Mysteries, or the opening title in Michael's latest series. And I really can't decide, so, as with David Mark a couple of months ago, one author will have to share this month's Puzzly between two of his books. I heartily recommend The Death Ship of Dartmouth and Rebellion's Message, so get down to your nearest bookshop or library and read them both. History fan or not, I assure you, you won't regret it. Just ask Sergio's Mumů