The Royalist Paperback
by S. J. Deas
William Falkland is a dead man. A Royalist dragoon who fought against Parliament, he is currently awaiting execution at Newgate prison.
Yet when he is led away from Newgate with a sack over his head, it is not the gallows to which they take him, but to Oliver Cromwell himself. Cromwell has heard of Falkland's reputation as an investigator and now more than ever he needs a man of conscience.
His New Model Army are wintering in Devon but mysterious deaths are sweeping the camp and, in return for his freedom, Falkland is despatched to uncover the truth. With few friends and a slew of enemies, Falkland soon learns there is a dark demon at work, one who won't go down without a fight.
But how can he protect the troops from such a monster and, more importantly, will he be able to protect himself?
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 336 pages
- Publisher: Headline Publishing Group
- Publication Date: 12/03/2015
- Category: Historical mysteries
- ISBN: 9781472216977
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Review by drmaf
Very grim and bleak mystery set during the English Civil War (or as it is now the politically correct War of Three Kingdoms). William Falkland is a war-weary Royalist saved from a date with the Parliamentary hangman by Oliver Cromwell himself in order to investigate a wave of suicides sweeping his beloved New Model Army. Set during a bitter winter, the story faithfully matches the miserable conditions, portraying the worst of humanity in a period of destroyed lives and families. While there is nothing particularly startling about the plot or the denouement, its still a worthwhile read. Although Falkland is a fairly cliched hero, the book manages to entertain without ever grabbing the reader by the throat. Lovers of British historical fiction will find much to ponder in its biting portrayal of the war. Not a book that will inspire affectionate remembrance, but a good read nevertheless.