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Stolen away by the faeries... Two parallel tales of a changeling's adventures in the real world and a boy's experience in the treacherous and magical Dark Court of the Faerie Realm. Making unexpected allies along the way, will either of them be rescued, or will Korrigan and The Bug be forced to dwell forever in a world not their own? Includes the linked Feyland novellas How to Babysit a Changeling and The Bug in the Dark Court *Plus a bonus story!* REAL CHALLENGE: A Spark Jaxley Adventure Sometimes, the true test isn’t what you think… Top-rated gamer Spark Jaxley has made it to the World Championships, ready to give the competition her all. The stakes are high, the gaming is fierce, and her entire future is riding on the outcome. In the end, will she make the right choice? KEYWORDS: Changeling, folklore, YA action adventure, Holly Black, Unseelie Court, faerie, fae, stolen away child, Feyguard, Melissa Marr, Spiderwick, Portal Fantasy, Narnia
What happens when the world’s worst shrew meets the world’s most formidable warrior? Mirrored Sword, a comedy as black as the Plague, as turbulent as the Wars of the Roses. She is an aspiring painter and devoted Yorkist. He is the legendary but ageing Beast of Ferrybridge – a Lancastrian stalwart! Rebellion in Lincolnshire throws them together, the Yorkist king keeps them together, and thus they must work out their destinies and England’s, in an epic story that combines laughter and tears, romance and adventure, history and make-believe, high art and vulgar entertainment: a medieval banquet, loaded with surprises, colourful characters and poetic justice. Part One, The Dance, is a journey from Lincolnshire to London, where he goes in search of a fool brother, and she goes in quest of a royal romance, the story careering through a series of revealing encounters, climaxing in treachery and mayhem at Baynard Castle, the king’s London home. Part Two, The Tour, is their return journey from London to Lincolnshire, as companions and fellow travellers of the king, when their previous encounters are even more revealing in reverse order, ending in a rising tide of bloodshed and revenge, malice and pure evil, hope and desperate self-belief, deep in the fens. The narrative represents the viewpoints of eight different characters in Part One, while Part Two concentrates on the viewpoints of just two characters, the hero and heroine, as they struggle to shake off, manipulate, dominate, understand and maybe accept each other. Themes include conflicting loyalties and challenging relationships associated with lovers, friends, family, pets, and political allies. Chapters are presented as 31 calendar dates in the year 1470. Front matter includes a decorative map of medieval England, showing the towns visited. Readers can track different points of view by means of a chart, bolded names heading different sections, and headers on alternate pages.
On Monday, 4 March 2019, Sergei Skripal and his 33-year-old daughter Yulia collapsed in the centre of Salisbury in Wiltshire. Both were suffering the effects of A-234, a third-generation Russian-manufactured military grade Novichok nerve agent. As three suspects, all GRU officers, were quickly identified, it was also established that the door handle to the Skripals’ suburban home had been contaminated with the toxin. Whilst the Skripals had lived in the cathedral city for the past seven years, what Sergei’s neighbours did not know was that he had once been a colonel in the Russian Federation’s military intelligence service. Back in July 1996, he had been posted under diplomatic cover to Madrid where he was subsequently cultivated by Pablo Miller, an MI6 officer operating as a businessman under the alias Antonio Alvares de Idalgo. Sergei’s recruitment by Miller was one of many successes achieved by Western agencies following the collapse of the Soviet Bloc. These counter-intelligence triumphs had their origins in a joint FBI/CIA project codenamed COURTSHIP which was based on the rather risky tactic of making an approach to almost any identified KGB or GRU officer, in almost any environment – a technique known as a ‘cold pitch’. It soon yielded results; within five years COURTSHIP had netted about twenty assets. Codenamed FORTHWITH, Sergei was betrayed in December 2001. Arrested in 2004, he was convicted of high treason in Russia, but was subsequently included in a prisoner swap in July 2010 and brought to the UK. The journey to the attempt on his life had begun. The Vienna spy swap was the culmination of a CIA plan to free a specific individual, Gennadi Vasilenko, who had been the Agency’s key mole inside the KGB since March 1979. To acquire the necessary leverage, the FBI swooped on a large network in the United States, bringing to an end a surveillance operation, codenamed GHOST STORIES, that lasted ten years. Anxious to avoid further embarrassment over the arrests, Vladimir Putin personally authorised an exchange, unaware of Vasilenko’s true status. It was only after the transaction had been completed, and two further Russian spies were exfiltrated from Moscow, that the Kremlin learned of Vasilenko’s value, and the scale of the deception. For the very first time, a Russian government had been persuaded to release four traitors and send them to the West. The humiliation was complete. As Spy Swap reveals, Putin’s retribution would manifest itself in a quiet Wiltshire market town.