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It started as A Simple Mistake…

Believing himself spurned by the woman he loves, a distraught Thomas Davenport leaves Dorset, intending to go as far as possible to cause the most dismay at home. But fate takes him to Ireland, at the height of the 1689 James Stuart invasion. He meets Tristan Browne, an Irishman born in Barbados, coming home to a land in uproar.

The Siege of Londonderry, like so much in the Seventeenth Century, pits countryman against countryman in a bitter war of attrition, starvation and resilience.

Bridget Browne, Tristan’s cousin, is caught up inside the walls of Londonderry and writes a heart-rendering yet insightful account. Published in London, it is quickly recognised as a definitive narrative of the siege from the inside.

Unknown to Thomas, his brother Matthew is also in Ireland, carrying out essential undercover reconnaissance for King William, although he wishes dearly to be back behind the pulpit in his native Dorset and with his new wife, Lady Eliza Merriman.

Thrown together by fate, the four must flee Ireland when Matthew uncovers a corrupt scheme, the work of old adversary Parchman. His master plan is to supply arms and equipment to the Protestant forces at inflated prices and use the money raised in vicious acts of vengeance to destroy Great Little and Bagber Manor back in Dorset.

Can these ancient and historic estates survive or will Parchman succeed and see his foes out on the streets, beggar bowl in hand?

A Simple Mistakecontinues the journey of the Davenport family as they unwittingly contribute to the building of the proud and indomitable nation we know today.

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