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Piers Alexander

The Bitter Trade

The Bitter Trade

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Calumny Spinks: Heretic; Smuggler; Rebel A Fantastic Debut Novel - Robert Elms; BBC Radio London In 1688; torn by rebellions; England lives under the threat of a Dutch invasion. Redheaded Calumny Spinks is the lowliest man in an Essex backwater: half-French and still unapprenticed at seventeen; yet he dreams of wealth and title. When his father’s violent past resurfaces; Cal’s desperation leads him to become a coffee racketeer. He has just three months to pay off a blackmailer and save his father’s life - but his ambition and talent for mimicry pull him into a conspiracy against the King himself. 5* reviews from time travel-loving readers ***** "A truly inspired insight into the grimy; disease ridden and stinking world of seventeenth century England. The author has almost perfected the art of literary smell-text; and after following Calumny across the Fleet you almost want to go and wash your hands. The plot is nice and involved with plenty of surprises and double crosses along the way. The background is stuffed full of Civil war feuds; guild house rivalries and the threat of rebellion against King James II" ***** "The Bitter Trade was a delight... The book is set at the time of the political turmoil of the Glorious Revolution in 1688 and the action is fast paced; making the book hard to put down. The plot is complex enough to hold the interest of the reader without being confusing. The characters; particularly that of the hero Calumny Spinks; are well drawn and believable."

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Historical Fiction

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Paperback

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