We are pitched straight into the heat, the sweat and blood of battle in this new adventure novelette by English Civil War expert, Mark Turnbull. It is the Battle of Naseby, pivotal engagement between King Charles and his new untested foes, the New Model Army and we are right at the cutting edge with cavalry officer Captain Maxwell Walker wielding his sword and firing his pistols in defence of King and country.

This is a war where officers lead from the front, where ordinary people can become sworn enemies of their neighbours. Where whole communities are rapidly swallowed up inside a greater conflict. As the civil war quickly consumes the whole nation in its war of ideals but also war of lethal arms.

Mark Turnbull uses his expert knowledge to unpick the unravelling of the Royalist cause by expertly weaving fiction with fact. He also paints a scene where we share Captain Maxwell's very real sense of jeopardy.

Through the eyes of his cavalry officer we see how the King is surrounded by conflicting advisers, allowing possible victory to be snatched away by dissenting voices. Every protagonist in the Civil War must have had their own back story. Maxwell has his own ghosts and his personal battles follow him around from the battlefield through the aftermath, when a personal quest of the utmost importance leads him into hiding and then spying behind enemy lines.

This is such a good adventure story and it vividly brings to life a too often overlooked conflict. Turnbull's narrative source is embedded within both sides revealing all the gory detail. It is an uncomfortable ride as we see at close quarter church, state, personal and national politics all pulled apart. But this a book about valour, integrity and moral values. It is a top story and leaves you wanting to know what happens next. I can't wait...