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Paul Doherty was born in Middlesbrough. He studied History at Liverpool and Oxford Universities and obtained a doctorate for his thesis on Edward II and Queen Isabella. He is now headmaster of a school in north-east London and lives with his family in Essex.
Paul has written over 100 books and has published a series of outstanding historical mysteries set in the Middle Ages, Classical Greece, Ancient Egypt and elsewhere. His books have been translated into more than twenty languages and are available in several formats, including large print, audio books, and more recently e-books.
The ideal stocking filler for anyone looking for some good, clean, grisly fun this Christmas. Wryly amusing and gruesomely fascinating, this smart science-based stocking filler provides technical answers to many of the questions curious kids like to issue at adults, and many an adult wonders about. Positing “What would happen if…” as its driving pivot, the book explores all manner of unusual ways to meet one’s demise in deadpan detail. Many of the questions tap into commonly-held fears: what would happen if your plane window popped out? If you were buried alive? If you were struck by lightning? Others are ingeniously absurd: what would happen if buzzards raised you? If you ate as many cookies as the cookie monster? If you toured the Pringles factory and fell off the catwalk? If you actually lost your head? Encompassing the disciplines of anatomy, physics, geology and astronomy, the authors’ answers are funnily thorough, and funny full-stop. Joanne Owen
England, 1455: a kingdom on the brink of civil war. The Red Rose: King Henry of Lancaster's days are numbered. Deemed unfit for rule, even by his own mother, he surely cannot last on the throne for long. Simon Roseblood - London lord, taverner and alderman - is one of few loyal servants left to fight his cause. The White Rose: Ruthless Richard of York has his eye firmly set on the crown - and plenty of powerful allies who will do anything to help him win it. Henchman Amadeus Sevigny makes no bones about enforcing his own authority and asserting law and order at York's command. When Roseblood is summoned by Sevigny to stand trial for a crime he knows he didn't commit, their paths cross in ways that alter them both for ever. And as the Wars of the Roses looms, an even greater foe is poised to rock the foundations of England, and wreak horror in a hotbed of political unrest.
1380. As the king's parliament debates whether to grant money supplies to the Regent for his war against the French, John of Gaunt orders Sir John Cranston and Brother Athelstan to investigate the murder of the Shrewsbury representatives, as the assassin must be caught before parliament suspects the Regent himself. Unfortunately, Sir John and Brother Athelstan have their own problems to deal with: the coroner is puzzled by a thief stealing cats from Cheapside, while Athelstan is concerned by claims that a devil is prowling his parish. Against a colourful pageantry of medieval court life and the dark slums of London, Sir John and Brother Athelstan pit their wits against a bloody murder and the assassin in the House of Crows.
Winter, 1379, and a sea of trouble is besetting England. French privateers attack the southern coast on a path to threaten London itself. In response, an English flotilla of warships, including God's Bright Light, drops anchor in the Thames. During the night, however, the first mate and two of the ship's crew disappear without trace. Summoned to resolve the mysteries on board, Sir John Cranston and Brother Athelstan finds themselves in the thick of a bloody battle on the Thames as scandal, treason and murder rule the day.
Autumn, 1379. The power of the crown is invested in John of Gaunt, and the kingdom is seething with discontent. The French are attacking the southern ports and peasants are planning a revolt organised by a mysterious leader who proclaims himself 'Ira Dei', the Anger of God. His plans plunged into chaos by a series of bloody murders, Gaunt turns to Sr John Cranston to catch the assassin and recover a vanished king's ransom in gold. Together, Cranston and his ally, Brother Athelstan, face threats and attack from the powerful as well as the seedy underworld of medieval London as they attempt to bring a cunning murderer to justice.
Summer, 1379. Sir John Cranston, coroner of the city of London, is trapped into a wager with Signor Gian Galeazzo, Lord of Cremona, when challenged to resolve a certain murder mystery within two weeks. Men have been found dead in the scarlet chamber of one of Cremona's manors. They have no mark upon them; they have neither drunk nor eaten poison; there are no secret passageways or entrances to the room. And they all have an awful expression of terror upon their faces. Realising his reputation and future wealth rest upon the solving of this mystery, Cranston seeks the help of his faithful secretarius, Brother Athelstan.
December, 1377. A great frost has London in its icy grip; even the Thames is frozen bank to bank. The Constable of the Tower of London, Sir Ralph Witton, is found murdered in a cold, bleak chamber in the North Bastion. The door is still locked from the inside and guarded by trusted retainers. So how did the assassins slip across a frozen moat to climb the sheer wall to commit such a dreadful crime? Appointed to investigate, Brother Athelstan and Sir John Cranston soon discover that Sir Ralph's murder is only the first in a series of macabre killings which have their roots in a terrible act of betrayal committed many years previously.
In 1376, the famed Black Prince died of a terrible rotting sickness, closely followed by his father, King Edward III. The crown of England is left in the hands of a mere boy, the future Richard II, and the great nobles gather like hungry wolves around the empty throne. As a terrible power struggle threatens the country, one of London's powerful merchant princes is foully murdered and Coroner Sir John Cranston and Dominican monk Brother Athelstan are ordered to investigate. When further deaths occur, they find themselves drawn ever deeper into a dark web of intrigue.
In Paul Doherty's brilliant new novel, will Hugh Corbett find the deadly assassin stalking London's streets? February 1304, and London is in crisis. A succession of brutal murders shocks the city as it comes to terms with the fall from power of Walter Evesham, Chief Justice in the Court of the King's Bench. Accused of bribery and corruption, Evesham has sought sanctuary to atone for his sins. When Evesham is discovered dead in his cell at the Abbey of Sion though, it appears that the Mysterium, a cunning killer brought to justice by Evesham, has returned to wreak havoc. Sir Hugh Corbett is ordered to investigate the murder. Has the Mysterium returned or is another killer imitating his brutal methods? As Corbett traces the ancient sins that hold the key to discovering the murderer's identity he must face his most cunning foe yet.
Murder and mayhem set at the time of the secretive Templar Order. The year is 1152, and Jerusalem is still in the hands of the Crusaders, although the lofty ideals of before have now been replaced by subtle power-play. Meanwhile, in England, King Stephen is waging bloody war against Henry Fitzempress. The Templar Order, now fifty years old, is a wealthy power, glittering with tempting riches. Against this background of bloodshed, Robert de Payens, grandson of Eleanor, one of the co-founders of the Temple, and Englishman Edward Sendal find themselves caught up in a murder mystery when Raymond, Count of Tripoli, is brutally assassinated. Who would have wanted to murder Raymond, and is it possible that the answer may lie within the hallowed ranks of the Templar order itself?
Mathilde of Westminster must face a dangerous foe in the third novel in Paul Doherty's acclaimed series. March 1312 and England is divided. Edward II is in conflict with his barons over royal favourite Gaveston, and Queen Isabella is momentously pregnant with the first union of Plantagenet and Capetian blood. Meanwhile, rebel Robert Bruce prowls the Scottish border seeking advancement. Mathilde of Westminster senses a challenge for the throne is imminent. When the great Earls step up their campaign, the King and Queen are forced to flee to a fortified priory in Tynemouth, now vulnerable to the Scottish marauders on land and Bruce's allies at sea. With threats all around, the royal party can only despair when one of their camp is murdered. Will Mathilde be able to find the perpetrator before the King loses control of the throne?
In Paul Doherty's new novel, Amerotke, Chief Judge of the Hall of Two Truths, is once again summoned to the Imperial Palaceo: Tekreth, Guardian of the Door of Sobeck, has fallen to his death from the roof of his stately mansion. According to all evidence, it was an accident but Pharaoh Queen Hatusu is not convinced. Increasingly worried about reports of mysterious disappearances along the Sobeck Road, the imperial highway stretching south, she believes that Tekreth's death could be part of a far greater problem. Amerotke, aware of the reports from the Sobeck Road, has also heard rumours about the Shemai, a cult devoted to death, based along its borders. Before Amerotke can start to consider either of these matters though, a gruesome mass murder occurs at the Necropolis. The funeral party for revered scribe, Ptulimis, has been poisoned and Amerotke must immediately investigate the abomination. As Amerotke probes further, he suspects that all these events may be connected and that dangerous forces are at work in Pharaoh Hatusu's realm. Will Amerotke be able to uncover the truth before Egypt is overrun by its sinister and dangerous underworld?
September 314 AD and once more death strikes the sprawling streets of Imperial Rome. When two prostitutes are found murdered - their bodies ripped open and their right eyes gouged out - it's feared a notorious killer, the Nefandus, has returned. Rumoured to be an imperial officer, he once waged bloody murder amongst Rome's prostitutes but vanished before his identity could be discovered. Has he reappeared, or is someone working in his guise? Desperate to retain order, the Empress Helena turns to her most trusted agent, Claudia. Helena commands her to discover the truth behind the Nefandus, before Rome descends further into chaos and confusion.
1095 and crusading fervour has swept Europe. Christ's fief of Jerusalem has been seized by the Infidels. The Frankish Knights of the West are to march east to liberate the Holy City. Hugh de Payens and Godefroi of St Omer, the soon-to-be founders of the Templar Order, and Hugh's younger sister, Eleanor, leave the security of their homes in Burgundy, France, with a plan to join Count Raymond of Toulouse's army, and march across the known world to Jerusalem. Follow the crusaders as they march through Europe into the glories of Byzantium and onto Syria and witness the hardships, bloodshed and trickery they encounter on their treacherous travels to the Holy Land.
January 1304 and Hugh Corbett, devoted emissary of King Edward I, has been charged with yet another dangerous mission. Scrope, an unscrupulous manor lord, has reneged on his promise to hand over a priceless ornate cross he stole from the Templars during the Crusades. Furthermore, he has massacred as heretics fourteen members of a religious order, whose corpses now hang in the woods near Mistleham in Essex. The King, determined to restore order, sends Corbett to Mistleham in his stead. But as Corbett reaches the troubled village, it becomes obvious that the situation has worsened. A mysterious bowman has appeared, killing townspeople at random. Is one of the Brethren responsible, or have the Templars arrived to wreak revenge? Can Corbett restore Mistleham to peace, and return the treasure to the King, before further blood is shed?
It's 1308 and England hovers on the brink of civil war. Edward II, his wife Isabella and the royal favourite Peter Gaveston Earl of Cornwall, have been forced to retreat to the King's folly. Just an arrowshot away lie the Great Lords and Philip IV of France, who are demanding that the Earl of Cornwall be charged with high treason. Edward is trapped, and worse, he has learnt that Philip has the 'Poison Maiden' on his side, a formidable spy who did untold damage during his father's reign. As Edward tries in vain to unmask the identity of the spy, Mathilde, handmaiden to the Queen, also attempts to identify the source of this threat. Soon the crisis spills over into violence. The Lords attempt to take Gaveston by force and the King and his Court, including Mathilde, are forced to flee. As the enemy closes in, Mathilde finds herself embroiled in a life and death struggle for the English crown.
In 1300, an English privateer named 'The Waxman' was trapped and overrun by two powerful war cogs flying the streamers of the powerful Hanseatic League of North Germany. The ship was carrying a casket containing the 'Carta Mysteriosa', a collection of valuable and detailed maps and sea charts. The rulers of Europe, not to mention their merchant princes, would wade through a sea of blood to obtain them. Three years later Wilhelm Von Paulents, a representative of the Hanseatic League, comes to England. Rumours have it that he owns the sea charts and Sir Hugh Corbett is sent to negotiate with Von Paulents. But the German visitors fall ill of some mysterious ailment and then, on the morning of the fourth Sunday in Advent, Corbett is summoned to a scene of bloody mayhem and murder: Von Paulents, his wife, son and clerk have been barbarously assassinated. The 'Carta Mysteriosa' have not been stolen. So why were the murders committed and by whom? Corbett investigates and, once again, he enters the world of shadows to confront the Seed of Cain.