Put Dorset and History together and you have a whole new world. A world of adventure, suspense, tension, where love mixes with religion, hatred with ambition.

I’ve long wanted to write historical fiction. Now I have a whole new series starting,
collectively known as “The Dorset Chronicles”. It is based in Dorset but spills over to
the country at large and set at a time when modern England first emerged.

Or rather was forged through bravery, stupidity, love, faith and fear.

It seems a forgotten era of History, yet so much happened. In contrast, much has
been written about the Tudors, the Wars of the Roses, the Civil War and Restoration.
Then, generally, fiction skips the next few generations and jumps to the Napoleonic
period when England was already an old, established nation. Yes, in this later period
it fought a long and bloody world war against Napoleon that threatened its very

But so it had a hundred years earlier, this time against the feared and long-lived
Louis XIV; certainly as much a despot as Napoleon. This time the young emerging
England faced a tyrant every bit as threatening as Revolutionary France could offer.

Consider what a person coming of age in 1685 would experience over a seventy-
year lifetime:

  • Revolutions, both successful and failed.
  • The start of Constitutional Monarchy and Parliamentary Democracy, the great
    bedrocks of our unwritten constitution.
  • The culmination of great religious rivalry and hatred, resulting in a more
    tolerant and mildly Protestant country.
  • The first Prime Minister in Robert Walpole.
  • Developing colonialism that, despite modern views, shaped much of Britain
  • The creation of the Bank of England, the National Debt and joint stock
  • Scientific and geographic expansion like no other era.
  • The formation of party politics.
  • The growth of towns, society and arts to develop into the Enlightenment.

Agricultural revolution, precipitating and facilitating population growth on an
enormous scale.

In the first book of the series, “A New Lease on Freedom”, several key personalities
are coming to adulthood at precisely this time. In the second book, “It Takes a
Rogue”, they reach twenty-one and face a world of intrigue, adventure, love and
despair, as the nation of England continues its wobbly, precarious journey towards
the country we know and love today.

Both “A New Lease on Freedom” and “It Takes a Rogue” will be released on 12th
April. More details will follow over the next few days.


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