Political intrigue, spies, football, blackmail and a good dollop of violence all combine very well indeed in this engrossing, enjoyable and fast moving historical thriller set just before the outbreak of WW1.
A 'Piece of Passion' from the author...
'In the early years of the 20th century the famous amateur club, the Corinthians, travelled the world to share their vision of football and how it should be played. A photograph of the players who toured Canada and the USA in 1906 hangs on a wall in my house (and is incorporated into the front cover of my novel). I was aware that the British Government in 1914 used sport and especially football to recruit fit young men for the army, and I began to wonder how many of those Corinthians perished in World War 1.
This provided a framework for ‘Patriotic Games’. Then I added the other constituents: a German spy ring which is being penetrated by a Corinthian footballer; two matches between the Corinthians and Blackburn Rovers, the League Champions; the machinations of the politicians; a betting scam orchestrated by the fraudster, Horatio Bottomley; finally a good dollop of blackmail, and plenty of violence including a few murders. Now I had a plot – and all I had to do was the writing.'
It is mid 1914 and Europe totters on the brink of a devastating war. The British government needs millions of soldiers and fit young men who play football are the first target. The starting point will be two matches between League Champions Blackburn Rovers and the famous amateur club the Corinthians even if these sons of the country's ruling class are at first reluctant to take part. The Corinthians are under pressure from all sides even from politicians like Lloyd George and Winston Churchill who want to fix the matches for their own ends and the fraudster Horatio Bottomley who has huge bets riding on the games and will stop at nothing to obtain the results he wants.
Publication date: 23/05/2013
Publisher: Acorn Independent Press
|Publication date:||23rd May 2013|
|Publisher:||Acorn Independent Press|
|Genres:||Action Adventure / Spy, Historical Fiction,|
Patriotic Games is Malcolm Hamer's seventh novel. His other novels include the five Chris Ludlow golf mysteries, and ‘Predator’, the story of a ruthless agent at large in the world of international sport. With his wife, Jill Foster, he published 23 editions of ‘The Family Welcome Guide’, about family-friendly pubs, hotels and restaurants in the UK. Malcolm also wrote a history of the Ryder Cup, and a guide to European golf courses. He has been an agent for sportsmen for several decades and his clients, past and present, include squash champion Jonah Barrington, Muhammad ...More About Malcolm Hamer