In 1551 the population of England and Wales was a meagre three million and, more than in any other period of English history, patronage by the nobility, and particularly by the King, could infinitely transform the life of an educated and opportunistic young man. In April 1551, the arrival of Lady Jane Grey, together with her parents and two sisters to the family property, Shute House, offers Richard Stocker this precious opportunity. As a reward for courageously saving his daughters in a storm, Lord Henry Grey, Marquess of Dorset, takes Richard into his employment. Richard embraces the rare chance he has been awarded and ascends within the family to become the Duke's personal secretary, encountering royalty along the way. In 1553 Richard's unwavering loyalty to the Grey family is tested when Lady Jane Grey is imprisoned in the Tower of London, having had her claim to the throne overturned by the ferociously Catholic Queen Mary Tudor. The book traces the impact on the life of an unassuming young man who gets caught up in a tide of religious and social conflict and a passionate and volatile romance.
Edward Charles was born in South Wales in 1941 and brought up in North London. He studied economics and law at the University College of Wales and then took a PhD in corporate finance at Manchester Business School.
After a short period as an academic, he began a career in finance and management consulting, before entering the City and working in Europe, the USA and Asia. He retired from international business in 2006.
His first novel, 'In the Shadow of Lady Jane' was published by Macmillan New Writing in 2006. The sequel, 'Daughters of the Doge' was published in 2007. The third book in the "Tudor Life" series is'The Courtesan of Padua.' It is followed by #4: 'Raphael's Secret'. All four books in the series are available on Amazon Kindle.
His new series of three books is set in Medici Florence:
"The House of Medici - Inheritance of Power" was published by Pen & Sword in June 2013
"The House of Medici - Seeds of Decline" will follow on 30 November 2013
"The House of Medici - Decline and Fall" will follow later.
Wolf Hall - Hilary Mantel
Bring Up the Bodies - Hilary Mantel
The Climbing Essays - Jim Perrin
Bones of the Master - George Crane
April Blood - Lauro Martines
Magnifico - Miles Unger
Medici Money - Tim Parks
Mr Crabtree Goes Fishing - Bernard Venebles [1949: the first book I wore out through re-reading]