Bitter Greens by Kate Forsyth. UK release Febraury 25, 2013. (previously published in Australia)
Charlotte-Rose de la Force has been banished from the court of Versailles by the Sun King, Louis XIV, after a series of scandalous love affairs. She is comforted by an old nun, Sœur Seraphina, who tells her the tale of a young girl who, a hundred years earlier, is sold by her parents for a handful of bitter greens …
After Margherita’s father steals a handful of parsley, wintercress and rapunzel from the walled garden of the courtesan, Selena Leonelli, he is threatened with having both hands cut off … unless he and his wife give away their little girl.
Selena is the famous red-haired muse of the artist Tiziano, first painted by him in 1513 and still inspiring him at the time of his death, sixty-one years later. Called La Strega Bella, Selena is at the centre of Renaissance life in Venice, a world of beauty and danger, seduction and betrayal, love and superstition.
Locked away in a tower, growing to womanhood, Margherita sings in the hope someone will hear her. One day, a young man does …
Three women, three lives, three stories, braided together to create a compelling story of desire, obsession, black magic, and the redemptive power of love.
The Fall of Arthur by J. R.R. Tolkien. US release May 23, 2013.
The world first publication of a previously unknown work by J.R.R. Tolkien, which tells the extraordinary story of the final days of England’s legendary hero, King Arthur.
The Fall of Arthur recounts in verse the last campaign of King Arthur who, even as he stands at the threshold of Mirkwood is summoned back to Britain by news of the treachery of Mordred. Already weakened in spirit by Guinevere's infidelity with the now-exiled Lancelot, Arthur must rouse his knights to battle one last time against Mordred's rebels and foreign mercenaries.
Powerful, passionate and filled with vivid imagery, The Fall of Arthur reveals Tolkien's gift for storytelling at its brilliant best. Originally composed by J.R.R. Tolkien in the 1930s, this work was set aside for The Hobbit and has lain untouched for 80 years.
Now it has been edited for publication by Tolkien's son, Christopher, who contributes three illuminating essays that explore the literary world of King Arthur, reveal the deeper meaning of the verses and the painstaking work that his father applied to bring it to a finished form, and the intriguing links between The Fall of Arthur and his greatest creation, Middle-earth.
Anarchy by Stewart Binns. UK release May 23, 2013.
Anarchy is the knuckle-whitening third novel in Stewart Binns' The Making of England series.
Ruthless brutality, greed and ambition: the Anarchy
The year is 1186, the thirty-second year of the reign of Henry II.
Gilbert Folio, Bishop of London, has lived through long Henry's reign and that of his grandfather, Henry I. He has witnessed the terrifying civil war between Henry II's mother, the Empress Matilda, and her cousin, Stephen; a time so traumatic it becomes known as the Anarchy.
The greatest letter writer of the 12th Century, Folio gives an intimate account of one of England's most troubled eras. Central to his account is the life of a knight he first met over fifty years earlier, Harold of Hereford.
Harold's life is an intriguing microcosm of the times. Born of noble blood and legendary lineage, he is one of the nine founders of the Knights Templar and a survivor of the fearsome battles of the Crusader States in the Holy Land. Harold is loyal warrior in the cause of the Empress Matilda. On his broad shoulders, Harold carries the legacy of England's past and its dormant hopes for the future.
Stewart Binns' Anarchy is a gripping novel in the great tradition of Conn Iggulden and Bernard Cornwell, and is the third in The Making of England trilogy, following Conquest and Crusade.
Prince of Legend by Jack Ludlow. UK release June 24, 2013; US release August 15, 2013. (Third in series)
The crusading armies go from besieging the citadel of Antioch, to themselves being besieged. Bohemund, takes a firm grip on the city, despite the depleted crusading army, thinned by death, disease and defection. Meanwhile, Tancred seeks his fortune in Jerusalem. No longer is the Holy City in the hands of the Arabs, but held by the mighty Fatamids of Egypt. Tancred is a leader when it comes to entering the city, but it remains to be seen if he will rise to become a Prince of Legend.
The Lion and the Lamb by John Henry Clay. UK release July 4, 2013.
An epic new novel of Roman Britain set in the twilight years of the Roman Empire.
Cironius Agnus Paulus is a Roman soldier with a secret past. After running away from home he is conscripted into the army and sent to Hadrian's Wall, where he becomes ensnared in a conspiracy that threatens not only his own family, but the whole province of Britannia.
In order to survive, and to warn others of the impending barbarian invasion, Paul must risk his life by deserting the Army and making the treacherous journey hundreds of miles south to his childhood home, where the events will reach a stunning climax.
A historical epic of great scope combined with a brilliant cast of characters both good and evil, THE LION AND THE LAMB will do for Roman Britain what Ken Follett's The Pillars of the Earth did for mediaeval England.
The Last Empress by Daisy Goodwin. UK release August 15, 2013.
Empress Elisabeth 'Sisi' of Austria is famed in her 1865 Winterhalter portrait depicting her lustrous, long dark hair studded with twenty-seven sparkling diamond stars, her pale, porcelain skin, her ruby lips and exquisite poise. Intelligent, beautiful and bored, she decides to leave her husband, Franz Joseph to his books, and pursue her love of hunting in a trip to England. It is there, riding with the hunt at Easton Neston, that she meets Bay Middleton, charismatic, handsome - and as excellent a rider as she is herself. Sisi is royalty, and married; Bay is charming, a commoner and betrothed - and his fiancee, Charlotte, is no fool...
Rich in period detail, this is a delicious, playful novel of a woman bound by her upbringing, and a man who cannot resist breaking rules.
Becoming Josephine by Heather Webb. Release date January 2014.
Rose sails from Martinique to Paris to trade her plantation ways and Creole black magic culture for love and adventure. But her haughty Parisian husband dashes her hopes when he abandons her amid the tumult of the French Revolution. Through her savoir faire, Rose secures her footing in high society, reveling in handsome men and glitzy balls—until the heads of her friends begin to roll.
After narrowly escaping death in the blood-drenched cells of Les Carmes prison, she reinvents herself as Josephine, a socialite of status and power. Yet her youth is fading, and Josephine must choose between a precarious independence and the unwelcome love of an awkward suitor. Little does she know, he would become the most powerful man of his century- Napoleon Bonaparte.