The Time of Terror
In 1793, France is gripped by The Terror – a violent period where neither the guilty nor the innocent are safe from the wrath of the revolutionary masses and the sharp blade of Madame la Guillotine.
Nathan Peake, in charge of a vessel chasing smugglers along England’s southern coast, is bored with his commission and keen to see some ‘real’ action. When France declares war against England, he gets his chance, albeit as a pawn of plotting politicians.
Nathan’s role as an ‘American’ captain is to undermine the credibility of the new state and its leaders. His journey takes him to Paris, where an American citizen, Gilbert Imlay, saves his life. Through Imlay, he gains access into Parisian circles, meeting citizens of all walks of life. He witnesses trials, set up to erase all traces of the enemies of the Revolution, criminals that thrive in the confusion, and innocent people losing their heads merely for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. The ‘terror’ is palpable. And his life is in danger. When he meets Danton, stalwart of the Revolution, his superiors in England are keen to make the man an offer. But with Robespierre plotting against his old adversary, will Nathan be on time?
The Time of Terror is a well-researched novel that draws you into the dangers of life in France post-1789. Terror reigned. And reading this novel, we can sense the fear. The first in a trilogy, it provides us with a not altogether flawless hero, a pair of scheming politicians, self-serving businessmen and fanatic revolutionaries. I’m already looking forward to the next instalment. A highly compelling read.