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June 21 , 2008

The Black Knight


In 1879, the British Army was embroiled in a vicious and ultimately unwinnable war in Afghanistan. Cornet William Dexter will have to endure bitter fighting at the Siege of Sherpur only to face even worse horrors, almost beyond imagination, in the snow swept mountains. Surviving against all the odds, he will return to London emotionally scarred and dissolute, embarking on a road to self-destruction.
Recruited by a close friend, he agrees to work for a small division of the Home Office, tackling work beyond the ability of the Police force. A man of independent means, he moves easily within the upper echelons of Victorian society whilst confidently enjoying the salacious distractions Victorian London offers. From exclusive gentlemen's clubs to sophisticated brothels his shadowy masters set him on the trail of fraudsters who are determined to carry off a massive stock market fraud.

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The relative peace of London is shattered by the arrival of Irish bombers, who embark on their most successful campaign of terror yet. As the carnage increases unchecked, William is asked to track down the bombers but also to unravel the tangled web of intrigue surrounding their backers. Could it possibly be true that wealthy Englishmen are bank-rolling the bombers in an attempt to cause chaos from which they can profit for their own ends?

As William comes to question the honesty of his own friends, he is forced to accept that deeply sinister forces are at work in the shadows, hiding behind the norms of society. Only by infiltrating the heart of a violent, secretive sect can he hope to discover the true motives of those sowing the seeds of death and destruction across London. He uncovers a cult based on a perverted code of ethics from the middle-ages that will stop at nothing to impose their corruption on England.

As the truth begins to emerge, William must risk everything to thwart the most daring robbery in history, a robbery that could cause the fall of Queen Victoria herself. If the power of those that oppose him should prove too great, the consequences could be fatal for him and all those he holds dear.

The Black Knight is a thrilling adventure set against the glamour and squalor of 19th Century London. Gritty realism transports the reader to a world strangely paralleling our own. William Dexter will take the reader from the killing fields of Afghanistan to the underground movement of London's secret sects, a city living in constant fear of terrorist attack. Moving from the privileged world of Pall Mall's gentlemen's clubs and the brothels of Mayfair to the crime ridden slums, the corrupting influence of unlimited power alongside the pleasures and indulgences of Victorian London will be laid bare.

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