--legendarydartmoor.co.uk November 2011
"the author's previous work as a playwright and scriptwriter ensures a great piece of storytelling" --"Your Family Tree" February 2012
From the Author
His wife Mary Howard still haunts the old roads of Dartmoor, a ghostly figure in a spectral coach rattling past the notorious gaol at Lydford; a demon bride luring unsuspecting travellers to their deaths. Her coach, it is said, was made by Satan himself, from the bones of her victims, four blazing skulls at its corners, a demonic dog with fiery eyes running alongside. Condemned to ride, night after night, it was Mary Howard who brought Sir Richard Grenville to Devon, who escaped his brutal fists and destroyed his fortunes as she fled into the night, so initiating decades of his violent retribution. To recover his money and property, Sir Richard Grenville kidnapped men for ransom, killed his fellow officers and hanged men with his own hands.
One man would finally defeat Richard Grenville and pay the ultimate price. Of humble origins, George Cutteford worked as a customs officer in Plymouth before finding employment as land agent for the wealthy heiress Mary Howard. Cutteford was her trusted friend and her lover, an illicit liaison that brought great prosperity to his puritan family, but then Mary chose to marry the dashing Sir Richard Grenville. From the outset, Cutteford saw Grenville for what he was, and set about destroying Grenville's claim over Mary's estates, but Grenville's friendship with King Charles I gave him the upper hand. Promoted to General in the King's Army on the outbreak of Civil War, Grenville seized his opportunity to have Cutteford's family thrown out of their estates, and Cutteford tortured and imprisoned in Lydford Gaol.
However, Mary Howard and George Cutteford had a secret that would bring an end to Grenville's reign of terror, that would bring men together from opposing sides of the war to conspire against Grenville and allow a boy with no name to become the wealthiest man in Devon.