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The Incendium Plot Paperback – March 1, 2018
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'A fantastic tale of spies, deceit and murder in the Elizabethan age' S. D. Sykes
England in 1572 is a powder keg of rumour, fanaticism, treachery and dissent. All it would take is a single spark . . .
In the England of Elizabeth I, the fear of plague and invasion, and the threat of insurrection are constant. As the Earl of Leicester's chief intelligencer, lawyer Dr Christopher Radcliff is tasked with investigating rumours of treachery at home and the papist threat from abroad. And with heresy and religious unrest simmering beneath the surface of a country on the brink, Radcliff is under pressure to get results.
Then two brutal and seemingly motiveless killings point alert Radcliff to the whisper of a new plot against the queen. There are few clues, and all he and his network of agents have to go on is a single word: incendium. But what does it mean - and who lies behind it? Christopher Radcliff must find out before it's too late . . .
(Please note: The Incendium Plot was first published in hardback as Incendium)
"Lawyer Christopher Radcliff is an erudite outsider with an unusual past, who turns state spy in this colourful and gripping historical novel." - - i-NEWSPAPER
"Swanston clearly knows the period well and Radcliff is an engaging hero" - Antonia Senior - THE TIMES
"Radcliff is a wonderful character, resourceful and intelligent . . . perfectly combines history and fiction . . . I loved every page" - Kate Atherton - FOR WINTER NIGHTS
"Beautifully done. All the sights, sounds and smells of Elizabethan England are there, along with an intriguing range of characters . . . Radcliff is clearly destined to appear in future books, and I think he's likely to gain some loyal fans" - - HISTORICAL NOVELS REVIEW
About the Author
- ASIN : 0552172383
- Publisher : Corgi (March 1, 2018)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 416 pages
- ISBN-10 : 9780552172387
- ISBN-13 : 978-0552172387
- Item Weight : 10 ounces
- Dimensions : 5 x 1.1 x 7.75 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #928,651 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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The author's done his research, the action moves along nicely and the characters are finely drawn and individualized. Looking forward to seeing more of Christopher Radcliff and what he gets up to.
Lawyer Christopher Radcliff finds his life threatened when he is sent by his patron, Robert Dudley, the Earl of Leicester, on a secret mission to Paris at the height of the religious conflict, then makes use of dubious intelligencers to investigate rumours of a massive plot in London, involving murder, torture and executions.
Swanston has developed the historical scene very well, as also the key characters.
Top reviews from other countries
The writer's pace is pretty good and he has crafted an absorbing tale with a believable cast of characters set against a true historical event. Radcliffe is sent on a mission to Paris to rendezvous with Sir Francis Walsingham who is based there for a time: he sees the Massacre and its aftermath and takes his life in his hands in escaping the beleaguered city to return to England with the news and evidence of a parallel plot which could be released on Elizabeth's England unless traitors are found and stopped.
The author has mined another rich seam from the fascinating Elizabethan age, and his hero is an attractive, imperfect but dedicated man trying to do his best with limited resources, a sharp dagger and his considerable intelligence. Good stuff and we will see more of Dr Radcliffe I have no doubt. Looking forward to that.
It's a shame that Radcliff's lover had to be beautiful with flashing green eyes and flaming red hair, not to mention being 'spirited'.
That said there are moments where the plot is clearly moving the characters about because there is no internal logic for some of the rather idiotic choices which were made. There were also moments when exposition was made the expense of character and one point, which remains stuck in my mind despite it happening in the first half of the book, where another character spoke, almost verbatim, a thought a different character has had only a page before.
I still enjoyed the book but it isn’t one I’ll return to.
Queen Bess is on the throne and there is an international plot to replace her with Mary Queen of Scots. Dr Cristopher is the Earl of Leicesters inteligencer in London and has a network of informers and information gatherers, but even he has great trouble uncovering the nature of the plot.
Truly a good read with a good lead in Dr Christopher. I look forward to reading more in the series and other books by the same author.