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Tim Clare is a performance poet based in the UK. He was born in 1981, and grew up in Portishead, in South-West England. He heads up Homework, a regular poetry night in Bethnal Green and has an MA in Creative Writing from UEA. As a stand-up poet, Tim has performed nationwide including at the Edinburgh Fringe and countless festivals. He has appeared on TV, Radio and has written for the Guardian, The Times, The Independent, The Big Issue and Writing magazine, amongst others. This is his debut novel.
Author photo © Andi Sapey
TRUE HONOUR IS ENDLESS. 1935. Norfolk. War is looming in Great Britain and the sprawling country estate of Alderberen Hall is shadowed by suspicion and paranoia. Alderberen's newest resident, Delphine Venner, is determined to uncover the secrets of the Hall's elite society, which has taken in her gullible mother and unstable father. As she explores the house and discovers the secret network of hidden passages that thread through the estate, Delphine unearths a world more dark and threatening than she ever imagined. With the help of head gamekeeper Mr Garforth, Delphine must learn the bloody lessons of war and find the soldier within herself in time to battle the deadly forces amassing in the woods . . .
War doesn't end. It sleeps. Delphine Venner is an old woman now. She is old, but she remembers everything. She remembers what it is to be a child of war, she remembers fighting for her life and she remembers what the terrifying creatures from another world took from her all those years ago. She remembers the gateway, and those she lost. And in that other world, beast-filled and brutal, someone waits for her. Hagar, a centuries-old assassin, daily paying a terrible price for her unending youth, is planning one final death: that of her abhorrent master, the Grand-Duc. The death that will cost her everything. The death which requires Delphine. Voyaging into this violence and chaos, Delphine must remember who she really is and be ready to fight once more, as war reawakens. In the battle to destroy an ageless evil, will both worlds be saved - or will every mortal creature lose everything?
Longlisted for the Desmond Elliott Prize 2016. April 2015 NewGen Debut of the Month. Quite simply breathtaking, it’s all too easy to become consumed by this beautifully written, vibrantly different and darkly rich fantasy. Spend 1935 with Delphine who is 12, as she hides in history, in war and battles, seeks out Mr Garforth the Head Gamekeeper and spends her time in hidden tunnels, woods and fields… away from Mother, Daddy and the confusion and mystery of the Society at Alderberen Hall. The author has the wonderful ability to paint a vividly full picture, it almost feels as though you’ve already seen the places he is describing and you’re welcoming them back into your minds eye. There are whispers and hints of what is to come, the writing pops and crackles in your head and heart, is this truth or is it imagination? Being unexpectedly invited into the inner thoughts of some of the characters pushes your thinking to scramble one way and then the other. As you reach the foothills of the ending, take a deep breath and look out, up and beyond; with the ability to keep you teetering on the edge of understanding, this is a stunning and beautifully moving debut novel. ~ Liz Robinson
' Right! My Dad slammed his fist against the dashboard. If you want to die let's f***ing die together! Dad...don't, I said, referring to the profanity rather than the death-threat. But my father was lost in his own private Thelma and Louise moment. His sleep-deprived eyes were like ping-pong ball halves. His heel hit the accelerator...' Tim Clare had always dreamed of greatness. Of writing a critically-acclaimed bestseller and quitting the rat-race of everyday life. The problem was that his friends had got there first and he was... well... nowhere. Seething with envy, single and still living with his parents, he decided to have one last shot at getting his masterpiece published. After all, things couldn't get any worse. Could they? From grovelling shamelessly to Jeffrey Archer on a reality TV show to a fraught encounter with The Most Powerful Woman in Publishing, a spectacular mental breakdown to an excruciating suicide pact moment with his dad, Tim soon finds the answer is a resounding 'yes'...