Thanks to Rachel Gilbey for inviting me on this Book Blitz.
Children of Fire
Can Josiah solve the puzzle before more people die, or is he out of his depth?
In 1841, at the height of the industrial revolution in the North West of England, Josiah Ainscough returns from his travels and surprises everyone by joining the Stockport Police Force, rather than following his adopted father’s footsteps into the Methodist ministry.
While Josiah was abroad, five men died in an explosion at the Furness Vale Powder Mill. Was this an accident or did the Children of Fire, a local religious community, have a hand in it. As Josiah struggles to find his vocation, his investigation into the Children of Fire begins. But his enquiries are derailed by the horrific crucifixion of the community’s leader.
Now Josiah must race against time to solve the puzzle of the violence loose in the Furness Vale before more people die. This is complicated by his affections for Rachael, a leading member of the Children of Fire, and the vivacious Aideen Hayes, a visitor from Ireland.
Can Josiah put together the pieces of the puzzle, or is he out of his depth? Children of Fire won the Writing Magazine’s Best Novel Prize for 2017
MY THOUGHTS AND REVIEW:
This was my first read by this author and a real step out of my comfort zone. I don’t read much historical fiction, but I do like crime and an investigation. So looking at the blurb it seemed to tick some boxes for me. So I decided to give it a whirl and I’m glad I did. This book had a great storyline and crisp economic prose. I settled into the author’s voice and looked forward to the tale he was going to tell me.
Set in 1841 at the height of the industrial revolution the story is told through the eyes of Josiah Ainscough, who decided to join the Stockport Police Force rather than follow his father and becoming a Methodist clergyman.
There has been an explosion at the Furness Vale Powder Mill. Was this an accident? Some persons don’t think so and the blame is cast upon The Children of Fire a local, and to some, extreme religious group.
Josiah is tasked with the investigating this community, because of his religious beliefs or because some people think the investigation will be wrapped up quickly and the status quo will quickly re-establish itself. The more Josiah investigates the deeper and murkier the waters seem. The case not only involves possible religious extremism, but also political intrigue. Also Josiah finds himself torn between to forceful women. Can an investigating officer afford affairs of the heart?
This was a great read, with top quality writing and with none of the technology and forensic evidence that clutters the modern read. I enjoyed this book. You might also!
Author Bio –
Paul CW Beatty is an unusual combination of a novelist and a research scientist. Having worked for many years in medical research in the UK NHS and Universities, a few years ago he took an MA in Creative Writing at Manchester Metropolitan University emerging with a distinction.
His latest novel, Children of Fire, is a Victorian murder mystery set in 1841 at the height of the industrial revolution. It won the Writing Magazine’s Best Novel Award in November 2017 and is published by The Book Guild Ltd.
Paul lives near Manchester in the northwest of England. Children of Fire is set against the hills of the Peak District as well as the canals and other industrial infrastructure of the Cottonopolis know as the City of Manchester.
Social Media Links – Twitter @cw_beatty