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Debut author brings a devilish edge to the English Civil War

Posted on January 21, 2012 by Flames

Figure the English Civil War is all about dashing Cavaliers and dour Roundheads? Think again…

Solaris is proud to announce it has acquired Gideon’s Angel by Clifford Beal, due for publication in 2013, which takes the seemingly familiar history of the mid 17th Century but introduces an infernal plot that makes this much more than just a history lesson!

Described as The Day of the Jackal meets The Devil Rides Out, this swashbuckling historical fantasy set in the aftermath of the terrible English Civil War sees science and alchemy as strange bedfellows with witchcraft and magic.

An epic adventure in the tradition of Robert E. Howard’s Solomon Kane, it is set in England in 1653. Colonel Richard Treadwell, an exiled Royalist officer in the service of Cardinal Mazarin, returns home in secret from France on a self-appointed mission to assassinate Oliver Cromwell, now king in all but name. He quickly learns however, that his is not the only plot in motion.

A secret army run by a deluded Puritan is bent on the same quest, guided by the Devil’s hand. When demonic entities are summoned, Treadwell finds himself in a desperate turnaround: he must save Cromwell to save England from a literal descent into hell. But can he convince the man sent to forcibly bring him back to the Cardinal? A young king’s musketeer named d’Artagnan.

“Not only is Clifford’s novel a rip-roaring blood and thunder horror fantasy,” said Jon Oliver, editor-in-chief of Solaris, “it is also a brilliant historical thriller. His sense of history and depth of narrative really transports you deep into a post-civil war London. It’s always a real joy to discover an accomplished debut novelist, and I know that Gideon’s Angel is really going to make its mark on the genre.”

About the Author
Originally from Providence, Rhode Island, Clifford Beal is an award-winning journalist and the former Editor of the authoritative London-based international news magazine Jane’s Defence Weekly. He worked as a defence journalist for over 20 years in both the US and the UK before he began writing books.

Beal is the author of Quelch’s Gold, the true story of a little-known but remarkable Anglo-American pirate of the 18th century who was the first man to be tried in a British Admiralty court outside of England (Praeger Books, 2007).

And writing realistic sword fighting scenes in fiction is second nature to Beal. He began medieval style armoured combat at the age of 17 in the US and later, in the mid-1990s, he organised a group of friends to begin the practical study of renaissance rapier and dagger techniques. This became the Sussex Rapier Society and is now the Sussex Sword Academy in Brighton. Gideon’s Angel is his debut novel.

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