By Jasper Fforde
THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER'Fforde pours his brilliant imagination into every corner of this world' Daily Mail'Fforde keeps the puns and neologisms coming thick and fast while exploring every facet of his novel's intriguing premise' Financial TimesEvery Winter, the human population hibernates. During those bitterly cold four months, the nation is a snow-draped landscape of desolate loneliness, and devoid of human activity. Well, not quite. Your name is Charlie Worthing and it's your first season with the Winter Consuls, the committed but mildly unhinged group of misfits who are responsible for ensuring the hibernatory safe passage of the sleeping masses. You are investigating an outbreak of viral dreams which you dismiss as nonsense; nothing more than a quirky artefact borne of the sleeping mind. When the dreams start to kill people, it's unsettling. When you get the dreams too, it's weird. When they start to come true, you begin to doubt your sanity. But teasing truth from Winter is never easy: You have to avoid the Villains and their penchant for murder, kidnapping and stamp collecting, ensure you aren't eaten by Nightwalkers whose thirst for human flesh can only be satisfied by comfort food, and sidestep the increasingly less-than-mythical WinterVolk. But so long as you remember to wrap up warmly, you'll be fine.Praise for Jasper Fforde:'Forget all the rules of time, space and reality; just sit back and enjoy the adventure' Telegraph'True literary comic genius' Sunday Express'Ingenious' Terry Pratchett
The Empire Collection Volume III
By Anthony Riches
The most recent three novels in Anthony Riches' thrilling EMPIRE series, including The Emperor's Blood, Thunder of the Gods, Altar of Blood, now available in one page-turning collection.The Emperor's Blood (VII)Centurion Marcus Aquila is back in Rome, hunting the men who destroyed his family. But the urge to exact his own brutal justice upon the shadowy cabal of assassins who butchered his family means that he must face them on their own ground, risking his own death at their hands. A senator, a gang boss, a praetorian officer and, deadliest of all, champion gladiator Mortiferum - the Death Bringer - lie in wait.Thunder of the Gods (VIII)With Rome no longer safe, Marcus and his Tungrian legion are ordered east to the desolate border lands where Rome and Parthia have vied for supremacy for centuries. Ordered to relieve the siege of an isolated fortress, their task is doomed to bloody failure unless they can turn the disaffected Third Legion into a fighting force capable of resisting the terrifying Parthian cataphracts. And Marcus must travel to the enemy capital Ctesiphon on a desperate mission, the only man who can persuade the King of Kings to halt a war that threatens the humiliation of the empire and the slaughter of his friends.Altar of Blood (IX)Ordered to cross the river Rhenus into barbarian Germany and capture a tribal priestess who may be the most dangerous person on the empire's northern border, the Tungrians are soon subject to the machinations of an old enemy who will stop at nothing to sabotage their plans before they have even set foot on the river's eastern bank. With two of the Bructeri tribe's greatest treasures in their hands, they must regain Roman territory by crossing the unforgiving wilderness that was the graveyard of Roman imperial strategy two hundred years before.
The Earthly Gods
By Nick Brown
Unable to make any progress in locating the missing Indavara, a desperate Cassius has been given an unrewarding assignment in Antioch. But when an old ally's daughter is kidnapped, he feels duty-bound to repay a long standing debt. Disillusioned with the tawdry demands of the Imperial Security Service, he disobeys his superiors and leaves Syria, determined to do some good.Accompanied by nomadic chieftain Kabir and a trio of warriors, Cassius soon finds himself in Greece hunting a vicious band of slave-traders trafficking women across the Empire. But these are no common criminals, and as Cassius sets out to bring them down, he finds himself up against ruthless, cunning men with powerful friends and a lot to lose.For the Agent of Rome, desperate times call for desperate measures.
The Empire Collection Volume II
By Anthony Riches
The EMPIRE sequence continues with books IV-VI in Anthony Riches' bestselling series, available in a page-turning collection, including The Leopard Sword, The Wolf's Gold and The Eagle's Vengeance.The Leopard SwordThe Roman agents who nearly captured Marcus Aquila have been defeated by his friends. But to protect those friends from the wrath of the emperor, he must leave the province which has given him shelter. As centurion of the second Tungrians, he leads his men from Hadrian's Wall to the Tungrians' original home. There he finds a different world from the turbulent British frontier - but one with its own dangers. A bandit chieftain is robbing with impunity. And now he threatens to destabilize the whole northern frontier of the empire.The Wolf's GoldMarcus Aquila and the Tungrians have been sent to Dacia with the mission to safeguard a major source of imperial power. The mines contain enough gold to pave the road to Rome. They would make a mighty prize for the Sarmatae tribesmen who threaten the province, and the outnumbered auxiliaries are entrusted with their safety in the face of an invasion. The Tungrians will have to fight to the death to save the honour of the empire - and themselves.The Eagle's VengeanceThe Tungrians return to Hadrian's Wall to find chaos, with the legions overstretched, struggling to man the northern frontier. The Tungrians are sent into the northern wastes, where a lost symbol of imperial power of the Sixth Legion awaits them. Protected by an impassable swamp, the eagle of the Sixth legion must be recovered if the legion is to survive. Marcus and his men must penetrate the heart of the enemy's strength, if they are to rescue the legion's venerated standard. If successful their escape will be twice as perilous...
The Empire Collection Volume I
By Anthony Riches
The first three stories in Anthony Riches' thrilling EMPIRE series, now available in one page-turning collection, including Wounds of Honour, Arrows of Fury and Fortress of Spears.Wounds of HonourMarcus Aquila has scarcely landed in Britannia when he has to run for his life - condemned to dishonorable death by power-crazed emperor Commodus. The plan is to take a new name, serve in an obscure regiment on Hadrian's Wall and lie low until he can hope for justice. Then a rebel army sweeps down from north of the Wall, and Marcus has to prove he's tough enough to lead a century in the front line of a brutal war.Arrows of FuryThe new Roman governor of Britannia must stamp out the northern rebellion or risk losing the province. For Marcus - Centurion Corvus of the 1st Tungrians - the campaign has become doubly dangerous. As reinforcements flood into Britannia he is surrounded by new officers with no reason to protect him. Death could result from a careless word as easily as from an enemy spear. Worse, one of them is close on his heels. The prefect of the 2nd Tungrians has discovered his secret. Only a miracle can save Marcus from disgrace and death . . .Fortress of SpearsMarcus Aquila - burning for revenge on an enemy that has killed one of his best friends - rides north with the Petriana cavalry. He believes his disguise as Centurion Corvus of the 2nd Tungrians is still holding. But he is just a few days ahead of two of the emperor's agents, sent from Rome to kill him. Pitiless assassins who know his real name, and too much about his friends.
By Kazuaki Takano
He is a new kind of human He may mean the end for the rest of us... One bright morning in Washington D.C., the US President learns of a terrifying new threat to national security. Soon afterwards, American mercenary Jonathan Yeager is asked to lead a team into the Congo to eliminate a mysterious enemy - a job which will help him pay for treatment for his dying son.But when they reach Africa, the threat turns out to be a three-year-old child named Akili: the next step in human evolution. The soldiers are under orders to kill the boy before his full potential can be realised. Yet Akili's advanced knowledge might be the only hope Yeager has to save his son's life...With time running out to choose a side, Yeager must decide whether to follow his orders or to save a creature who may not be as harmless or innocent as he appears. Because Akili is already the smartest being on the planet, with the power to either save humanity - or destroy it.[This novel was first published in 2014 as GENOCIDE OF ONE.]
The Emperor's Silver
By Nick Brown
Still recovering from his previous assignment in Arabia, imperial agent Cassius Corbulo has been spending most of his time and money on women and wine. Unfortunately for him, word of his achievements has reached the emperor Aurelian's deputy and he is sent north, tasked with smashing a counterfeiting gang. Cassius tracks the criminals to the city of Berytus, where his investigations are hampered by civil unrest and uncooperative officials, not to mention the personal problems of his servant Simo and bodyguard Indavara. Despite this - and intense pressure from his superiors - the young officer eventually closes in on the gang. But his enemies will do anything to protect their profits, and Cassius and Indavara soon find themselves fighting not only for the emperor, but for their very survival.
The Eye of Zoltar
By Jasper Fforde
The Mighty Shandar, the most powerful wizard the world has ever seen, returns to the Ununited Kingdoms. Clearly, he didn't solve the Dragon Problem, and must return his fee: eighteen dray-weights of gold. But the Mighty Shandar doesn't do refunds, and vows to eliminate the dragons - unless sixteen-year-old Jennifer Strange and her sidekicks from the Kazam house of enchantment can bring him the legendary jewel, The Eye of Zoltar.The only thing that stands in their way is a perilous journey with a 50% Fatality Index - through the Cambrian Empire to the Leviathan Graveyard, at the top of the deadly Cadair Idris mountain. And it's a quest that sees Jennifer fighting not just for her life, but for everything she knows and loves . . .
Enemies at Home
By Lindsey Davis
We first met Flavia Albia, Falco's feisty adopted daughter, in The Ides of April. Albia is a remarkable woman in what is very much a man's world: young, widowed and fiercely independent, she lives alone on the Aventine Hill in Rome and makes a good living as a hired investigator. An outsider in more ways than one, Albia has unique insight into life in ancient Rome, and she puts it to good use going places no man could go, and asking questions no man could ask.Even as the dust settles from her last case, Albia finds herself once again drawn into a web of lies and intrigue. Two mysterious deaths at a local villa may be murder and, as the household slaves are implicated, Albia is once again forced to involve herself. Her fight is not just for truth and justice, however; this time, she's also battling for the very lives of people who can't fight for themselves.Enemies at Home presents Ancient Rome as only Lindsey Davis can, offering wit, intrigue, action and the further adventures of a brilliant new heroine who promises to be as celebrated as Marcus Didius Falco and Helena Justina, her fictional predecessors.
The Emperor's Knives: Empire VII
By Anthony Riches
'A master of the genre' The TimesThe seventh novel in Anthony Riches' acclaimed Empire sequence brings Marcus Aquila back to Rome, hunting the men who destroyed his family. But the revenge he craves may cost him and those around him dearly.The young centurion's urge to exact his own brutal justice upon the shadowy cabal of assassins who butchered his family means that he must face them on their own ground, risking his own death at their hands.A senator, a gang boss, a praetorian officer and, deadliest of all, champion gladiator Mortiferum - the Death Bringer - lie in wait. The knives are unsheathed, and ready for blood . . .
The Eagle's Vengeance: Empire VI
By Anthony Riches
'A master of the genre' The TimesThe Tungrian auxiliary cohorts return to Hadrian's Wall after their successful Dacian campaign, only to find Britannia in chaos. The legions are overstretched, struggling to man the forts of the northern frontier in the face of increasing barbarian resistance.The Tungrians are the only soldiers who can be sent into the northern wastes, far beyond the long abandoned wall built by Antoninus, where a lost symbol of imperial power of the Sixth Victorious Legion is reputed to await them. Protected by an impassable swamp and hidden in a fortress atop a high mountain, the eagle of the Sixth legion must be recovered if the legion is to survive.Marcus and his men must penetrate the heart of the enemy's strength, ghosting through a deadly wilderness patrolled by vicious huntresses before breaching the walls of the Fang, an all-but-impregnable fort, if they are to rescue the legion's venerated standard. If successful their escape will be twice as perilous, with the might of a barbarian tribe at their heels.
The Eleventh Hour
By Nick Brown
Syria, 262 AD. Imperial agent Abascantius has failed his superiors and now faces the unwelcome prospect of a return to the legions. With only hours to work with, he will need resourcefulness and ruthlessness in equal measure if he is to salvage the situation and save himself. From Agent of Rome author Nick Brown, this compelling short story is set in the violent, corrupt underbelly of third century Antioch.
By Fergus McNeill
The Enduring Flame
By Nigel Tranter
Angus Guthrie, Scottish sailor and undercover oil-prospector, gets more than he bargained for when he agrees to accompany an archaeological expedition into the forbidden heart of the Arabian desert. The group must overcome the suspicions and superstitions of a region untouched by the modern age and unwilling to bow down to it. In the end they turn to a group of outlaws, and in doing so become outlaws themselves. Above all, they must face the gruelling challange of the desert as they traverse a sea of burning sand in search of the legendary lost city of Wabar and the mysterious Enduring Flame of Duweila. 'One of Scotland's most prolific and respected writers' The Times
The Erotic Memoirs of a Lusty Victorian Rake: Volume 3
There comes a time in every young man's life when he should extend his 'affections' to the beautiful girls of foreign lands - this is just such a moment for notorious turn-of-the-century philanderer Count Johann 'Johnny' Gewirtz. Johnny comes to England to complete his education at 'Harcourt Academy for the Sons of Gentlefolk' in Berkshire. To his delight, he discovers a bevy of pretty maidens eager and willing to succumb to his continental charms.
The Erotic Memoirs of a Lusty Victorian Rake: Volume 2
In 1885 sixteen-year-old Johann Gewirtz leaves Imperial Vienna and the Continental fleshly delights that he has begun to explore so avidly to complete his education in England. Although he is given a delicious farewell, courtesy of two of the luscious chambermaids in the Gewirtz household, he is somewhat apprehensive about what life will hold for him at the Harcourt Academy for the Sons of Gentlefolk. However, Johann's spirits are buoyed up on the journey by some sensual fun with uninhibited sisters from Ireland, and a wild two days in Paris with his Uncle Pieter and the famous artist Henri Toulouse-Lautrec. Little wonder that Johann is feeling rather tired by the time he reaches London. But he summons up new reserves of strength to enjoy further romps with two raunchy young English girls before settling in at his new school.
The Erotic Memoirs of a Lusty Victorian Rake: Volume 1
To the scion of an aristocratic family in Imperial Vienna on the verge of his sixteenth birthday, the sight of a housemaid's delightfully rounded breasts makes him more determined than ever to cast off his unwanted virginity. And, to his great delight, the young Johann Gewirtz is seduced by the skilful embraces of two saucy young female students as well as those of a full-bosomed chambermaid during a summer holiday with his schoolfriend Carl. The lucky Johann's sensual education continues apace thanks to a pretty artiste from a travelling circus and a charming gypsy girl who will do anything - but anything - for him if he will help her gain employment in his parents' household. The lusty teenage Johann is more than happy to oblige all his newly-found conquests and still finds time to help steer his friend Carl through his own rite of passage - as well as satisfying the needs of Wanda, a desirable young miss living on his father's estates in far-off Poland . . .
By Nigel Tranter
Patrick of Dunbar was more interested in encouraging the trade generated by the great wool production of his sheep-strewn Lammermuir Hills than in warfare and matters of state. But these were troubled times. The Scottish king, Alexander III, was but a child and the heir to the English throne, Edward Plantagenet, already proving aggressive. But it was the Norsemen and Vikings, with their domination of the Hebrides, as well as Orkney, Shetland and the Isle of Man, and the immediate threat they presented to his trading links with Norway and the Baltic States, who finally drove the Cospatrick to action.
By Jack Hight
Salah ad-Din, or Saladin as he is known to the Franks, was a Kurd, the son of despised people, and yet he became Sultan of Egypt and Syria. He united the peoples of Allah, recaptured Jerusalem, and drove the Crusaders to the very edge of the sea. He battled, and in the end tamed King Richard the Lionheart, who well deserved his savage name. He was a great man, the greatest man that I ever knew, but when I first met him, he was only a skinny child . . . The Chronicle of Yahya al-DimashqBut alongside the legend of Saladin there is another story. When the Crusader army is routed beneath the walls of Damascus in 1148, a young Saxon named John is captured and enslaved. He is bought by Yusuf, a slight, bookish boy, for the price of a pair of sandals. And so begins the story of two enemies brought together by fate and of a friendship that will change the face of the Holy Land. Timid Yusuf will grow up to become the warrior Saladin, nicknamed 'the Eagle'; John will first teach his young master the art of war, before returning west to serve first the King of Jerusalem and then King Richard himself.From spectacular set-piece battles to the political manoeuvrings of the corrupt Crusader court, from the brutality of single combat to the sophistication of Islamic life, this is the first in a remarkable trilogy that will chart the story of the greatest leader the Middle East has ever known.
The End of the Line
By Nigel Tranter
As the 15th century dawned, Scotland was plunged into chaos. With the new king ailing and weak, his unscrupulous younger brother, the Earl of Fife, seized his chance to become Regent and Governer of the realm. Sent to London to appease the English king, George the Cospatrick, 10th Earl of Dunbar and March, struck up a lasting friendship with Richard II's cousin, Henry of Bolingbroke, who was to become King Henry IV of England. On Henry's succession to the thone, Robert III's wife, Queen Annabella, asked Earl Cospatrick to use his influence with the English king in order to avert civil war. And so it was that Cospatrick found himself seeking help from the Auld Enemy to right affairs in Scotland. In due course, Cospatrick's son George was destined to pay the price of his father's links with the Plantagenets and perceived treachery.