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Something slightly different - Save the London 1665 Appeal

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  First heard of 'The London' some years ago when was involved in the  The Great War at Sea Poetry Project  and found a poem about HMS Vanguard, a naval ship, that exploded whilst moored at Scapa Flow on 9th July 1917, with the loss of at least 804 lives. Another internal explosion occurred on board HMS Bulwark on 26th November 1914, off Sheerness, Kent. costing 741 lives.  I became curious about other naval ships that blew up whist moored away from hostile action.  So began to notice the  'London', a 76 gun second rate  ship of the line, launched at Chatham Dockyard in June 1656. Has not featured particularly in the accounts of Cromwell's navy. The 'London' was one of the ships that escorted Charles II back to England in 1660, and carried James Duke of York on board.   The second Anglo-Dutch war broke out on 4th March 1665. Most historians regard the conflict as having its origins in colonial and commercial rivalry between the two countries.   On September

Featured Civil War Novella -The King's Spy by Mark Turnbull

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  Mark Turnbull's previous book, 'Allegiance of Blood' (2019), has become one of my favourite 17th century related novels, and was also pleased to arrange an  author interview  a few months ago. Mark Turnbull's new novella 'The King's Spy' , is the first offering from 'The Rebellion Series' that he is currently working on. A kindle version  has appeared, available on 'Amazon' , and can be borrowed via 'Kindle Unlimited' , a paperback edition will be published by Sharpe Books shortly.  A most superb novella indeed. Opens with the battle of  Naseby ( 14th June of 1645) , and ends with the first bout of fighting at  Rowton Moor near Chester  (24th  September 1645). And in the aftermath of Naseby, the Royalist cause is starting to wane, setbacks on the battlefield mean that their chances of outright victory are reducing. Friction is also developing between King Charles and Prince Rupert. There is spying, treachery, battle scenes, tragedy

Featured Novel 'Weave a Web of Witchcraft' -Jean M Roberts

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'Weave a Web of Witchcraft ' is a kindle novel by Jean M. Roberts, available via Amazon and also 'Kindle Unlimited' . Recreating a documented case of one Hugh Parsons living in  Springfield , Massachusetts from 1645-1651. Hugh ends up being committed and sent for trial on a charge of witchcraft . His wife Mary, is one of his main accusers. Mary in turn gets charged with the murder of one of their children.  It has been a great pleasure to ask a few questions view email to  Jean in respect of her book. I gave 'Weave a Web of Witchcraft ' a glowing review on 'Amazon Co. UK' and 'Goodreads' : Thought this was marvellous. Fair to state that is psychological horror fiction , though based on trial dispositions, concerning Hugh and Mary Parsons in Springfield , Massachusetts..... The book is not study of dramatic claims of possession like Salem in 1692 or and the story does not draw on heavy occultism. And that probably adds to the book's power. It 

Interview with Michael Ward , on his debut novel 'Rags of Time '

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This Autumn read a debut novel by Michael Ward 'Rags of Time' . Was most impressed - and  I attempted a review on 'Goodreads' . Besides, a novel which takes its title from a line in a John Donne poem ( 'The Sun Rising' ) deserves a post here:   " An astonishing murder mystery novel set in 17th century London. Can not fault it at all. The author displays great knowledge of the working of the merchant companies, and how trade was conducted. Opens with a murder , and Thomas Tallant a youth a City magistrate are trying to frame for the offence, emerges as the main character. The backdrop of King Charles recalling parliament, religious and political tensions, subversive literature being circulated, a war with Scotland which the Crown is losing. One of the leading female characters is exploring the new scientific discoveries. Was impressed how the author portrays the life of a family and their associates in a society which is fracturing around them. Enjoyed the d

'Guy Fawkes or The Gunpowder Treason ' 1841 novel

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                        William Harrison Ainsworth  (1805-1882)  William Harrison Ainsworth  by Daniel Maclise ( died 1870) donated to the National Portrait Gallery in 1949 : In public domain, courtesy of Wikipedia.  William Harrison Ainsworth  1805-1882 was the son of a Manchester solicitor and moved to London in 1824 to study law. As well as being a poet , magazine editor and journalist,  Ainsworth belonged to a crop of Victorian novelists who were widely read during during the middle of the 19th century but fell from favour, being  largely neglected by the end of his life. 'Guy Fawkes or The Gunpowder Treason -An Historical Romance'  appeared by installments, included in 'Bentley's Miscellania'  magazine from January 1840- November 1841 The historical novel was quite a new genre , arguably starting with Sir Walter's Scott's  'Waverley' from 1814. Ainsworth contributed  a whole series of novels . including  the successful 'Rookwood' which h