At dawn on Easter morning 1343, a marauding band of French raiders arrives by boat to ambush the coastal village of Hookton. To brave young Thomas, the only survivor, the horror of the attack is epitomized by the casual savagery of a particular black-clad knight. Thomas vows to avenge the murder of his townsmen and recapture a holy treasure that the black knight stole from the church.
Thomas of Hookton is a seasoned veteran of King Edward's army and a natural leader in what will be remembered as the Hundred Years' War. Accompanied by a small but able band of soldiers, Thomas is sent to Gascony to capture the castle of Astarac. But he has ulterior motives for accepting the charge: Gascony is the home of the black knight, Guy de Vexille, who brutally slaughtered his father. It is also reputed to be the place where the Grail was last seen.
"A Fitting Conclusion to a Great Series"
This is a brilliant dual biography charting British Robert Scott's and Norwegian Roald Amundsen's race to the South Pole during 1911-12. Huntuford's is the accepted, definitive account of the race and a reassessment of the two men. Thoroughly researched, revealing the adventures and misfortunes that befell them both, he describes the driving ambitions of the era, and the complex, often deeply flawed individuals who were charged with carrying them out.
"Good but could have been great"
Rudyard Kipling's short stories of life in the British Raj began in 1888 as journalistic snippets written to supplement his more serious factual output when he was employed as the assistant editor, at the meagre age of 20, of the Lahori-based Civil and Military Gazette.
"Almost a Masterpiece"
On the occasion of the 90th birthday of Queen Elizabeth II, respected royal broadcaster Jennie Bond explores the life of the longest reigning British monarch. Born a minor royal, Elizabeth is now the most recognisable woman in the world. Admired by many, she has reigned through a period of unprecedented change, keeping the monarchy strong and consistent despite the end of empire, public scandals and private loss.
"Thoroughly Enjoyable From Start To Finish"
Elizabeth is born. Tales of early childhood. The King dies, and the Wallis Simpson crisis ensues. King George VIth is crowned.
Into an age crying out for new leaders stumbles the most unlikely polotical hero of all. Tom Goodfellowe is not like other MPs. His private life is a mess, his love life is abysmal, he has an overdraft and a drink-driving conviction. He also has a talent for getting into trouble. He lives in London's Chinatown, and when he is asked to help a young Chinese girl, he has no idea he's heading into conflict with the Prime Minister, the police, and the press - particularly Freddy Corsa, a newspaper proprietor who sets out to ruin Goodfellowe financially, politically, and sexually.
Princess Diana dies. The monarchy rebrands itself for the future.
Annus Horribilis. Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson split up. Princess Anne divorces Mark Philips. The shaming Squidgygate and Cammillagate scandals.
The wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer. The Falklands War. The relationship between Charles and Diana begins to fail.
The British Empire gradually dissolves. A TV documentary is made about the Royal Family. The Queen's Silver Jubilee and the assassination of Lord Moutbatten.
The Glamourous life touring the World and the difficult romances of Elizabeth's sister Margaret.
Elizabeth is crowned. Elizabeth and Philip embark on a huge tour of the Commonwealth.
July 1939: Elizabeth meets Philip her future husband. The War Years. The Royal wedding. Charles is born.