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Rebels and Traitors


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A ground-breaking historical novel set during the English Civil War

About the Author

Lindsey Davis has written over twenty historical novels, beginning with The Course of Honour. Her bestselling mystery series features laid-back First Century detective Marcus Didius Falco and his partner Helena Justina, plus friends, relations, pets and bitter enemy the Chief Spy. After an English degree at Oxford University Lindsey joined the Civil Service, but became a professional author in 1989. Her books are translated into many languages and have been dramatized on BBC Radio 4. Her many prizes include the Premio Colosseo, awarded by the Mayor of Rome 'for enhancing the image of Rome', the Sherlock award for Falco as Best Comic Detective and the Crimewriters' Association Cartier Diamond Dagger for lifetime achievement. For more information, please visit


Bestseller Davis (Alexandria) takes a break from her popular Roman historical mysteries with this sprawling epic of the English civil war. Alas, after the brief, moving prologue, which vividly depicts the final hours of Charles Stuart before his execution in 1649, the novel never again attains that narrative height. The action shifts to 1634, laying the groundwork for the conflict that culminated in the royal beheading and continues through the downfall of Oliver Cromwell's Protectorate in 1657 before a pat ending. Much of the action is seen through the eyes of a resourceful survivor, Gideon Jukes, a printer who ends up becoming a musketeer in one of the London Trained Bands, fighting for the Parliament against the king's men. Efforts to humanize the conflict by providing the bookish Jukes with a love interest don't amount to much. Still, the author does a good job of showing the changing role of print in the political struggles. (Jan.) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.

Seventeenth-century monarch Charles I attempts to rule England without parliamentary guidance, a misstep that will lead to the bloodthirsty conflict known as the English Civil War. In this sprawling historical saga, the author of the popular Marcus Didius Falco mysteries (Alexandria) examines the lives of ordinary men and women whose world is turned upside down by the ensuing chaos. Gideon Jukes, the son of a prosperous London grocer, is sent to apprentice in a nearby print shop. The printer's seditious leanings greatly influence the young man, who will eventually find himself a captain in the parliamentarian forces. On the opposing side, Juliana Lovell, the wife of Royalist colonel Orlando Lovell, fights to keep her children fed and clothed during her husband's long absences. VERDICT Although Davis has created an assortment of interesting characters, the laundry list of battles, uprisings, and parliamentary intrigues makes for some dry reading. Fans of her Roman historicals will be disappointed. Strictly for those who enjoy their historical fiction with a liberal dose of political minutiae.-Makiia Lucier, Moscow, ID Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.

"Every now and then along comes an historical novel with such scope and ambition that it takes your breath away...So it is appropriate that Lindsey Davis's monumental English Civil War epic, Rebels and Traitors, is billed as the equivalent of Margaret Mitchell's American blockbuster Gone With The Wind ... Rebels and Traitors is as much an informative history lesson as a gripping historical novel and Davis spares us none of the terrible realities of this disastrous war - the slaughter of innocents, the break-up of families, the shattered dreams and the desperate struggle to survive. A magnificent evocation of time and place" * Lancashire Evening Post *
"Davies is a prolific and popular writer, with a wide following for her thrillers set in the classical world. This is something different, large-scale and very ambitious. The word "epic" is overused, but this book deserves it. Davies never forgets that this is not the "English" civil war, but a conflict fought in Wales, Ireland and Scotland as well ... Her research has been assiduous and detailed, her commitment to the subject is impressive, and the background detail is often eye-opening." -- Hilary Mantel * Observer *

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