Wednesday 16 February 2022

πŸ“– Book Review ~ Winchelsea by Alex Preston

3 February 2022

My thanks to the publisher for my copy of this book

The year is 1742. Goody Brown, saved from drowning and adopted when just a babe, has grown up happily in the smuggling town of Winchelsea. Then, when Goody turns sixteen, her father is murdered in the night by men he thought were friends.

To find justice in a lawless land, Goody must enter the cut-throat world of her father’s killers. With her beloved brother Francis, she joins a rival gang of smugglers. Facing high seas and desperate villains, she also discovers something else: an existence without constraints or expectations, a taste for danger that makes her blood run fast.

Goody was never born to be a gentlewoman. But what will she become instead?

πŸ“– My Review ...

When sixteen year old Goody Brown witnesses her father's smuggler friends turn on him to wreck revenge for past misdemeanors it fires in her the need to avenge her father's murder. With the help of her brother, Francis, Goody must step into the lawless world of rival smugglers whose moral compass is equally questionable, and soon they are both caught in a world of danger and high adventure.

Reminiscent of so many smuggler's tales, Winchelsea, is a rollicking romp through the hidden caverns and swirling seas of the seventeenth century when lives were lost and promises broken but throughout all the danger Goody shows great resilience as she makes her way in a male dominated world.

Authentically written, and with a fine eye for even the smallest detail, time and place come alive and with more than a nod towards J Meade Falkner's, Moonfleet, Winchelsea is a more grown up version of this classic adventure.  Add together the dastardly nature of smugglers, the lure of the promise of the Jacobite King Across The Water, the adventurous nature of a young woman caught between two worlds, and you have all the ingredients for a rollicking good historical mystery.

Best read with.. a swig of grog and a bite or two of pie

About the author

Alex Preston is an award-winning author of three novels: This Bleeding City, The Revelations and In Love and War, as well as a book of non-fiction As Kingfishers Catch Fire. He writes regularly for the Telegraph, the Economist and Harper’s Bazaar. He reviews books for the Observer’s New Review, Financial Times and Spectator. Alex is co-founder of the Corfu Literary Festival and Patron of Oxford Literary Festival.

Twitter @ahmpreston #Winchelsea


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