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About Margaret Muir
Muir grew up in England but has lived in Australia for over 40 years.
With a love of the sea and tall ships, she decided to write nautical fiction under the by-line M.C. Muir. 'The Unfortunate Isles' is the fourth book in the successful Oliver Quintrell series. Muir's previous novels were historical fiction set in Yorkshire.
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The year is 1802 and the Treaty of Amiens heralds a fragile peace in the war with France. While Britain’s fighting ships languish in ordinary, sailors litter the alleyways of Portsmouth, while half-pay officers struggle to survive as best they can.
From a beach, near his home on the Isle of Wight, Captain Oliver Quintrell observes a fleet of merchant ships preparing to sail. He is unaware he will soon have command of His Majesty’s frigate ELUSIVE which will sail from Spithead with them.
Entrusted with secret Admiralty orders, he heads south, but once the ship enters the freezing waters of the Southern Ocean, a series of devastating events occur and threaten to jeopardise his mission. For Captain Quintrell, the mumblings of a near mutinous crew, sabotage, murder most foul, and the dangers held within a simmering volcanic island, pose as much of a threat as a broadside from a French man-of-war.
Will the captain succeed in his mission? Will he retrieve the ‘prize’ he was sent to search for? Will he, and his ship, return safely to England?
FLOATING GOLD is the first book in this maritime fiction series which features Captain Quintrell and his crew. The sequel, THE TAINTED PRIZE, will be published in September, 2012.
For more about this book go to: www.squidoo.com/floatinggold
After witnessing HMS Victory limp back to Portsmouth, Oliver Quintrell joins other officers and men mourning the loss of Britain’s greatest seaman. The funeral at St Paul’s Cathedral is an awful spectacle.
But the ramifications of the battle are far reaching and many post captains find themselves without a commission.
Surprised by his good fortune, Captain Quintrell is granted a command, a 50-gun ship anchored in Cork Harbour.
Within days he departs Ireland and heads south but without the support of his regular crew.
Confronted with an abandoned ship and a rogue officer Oliver Quintrell faces challenges he would never expect.
The year is 1803 and aboard HM Frigate, 'Perpetual', Captain Quintrell heads south to the Southern Ocean. His orders are to find a missing ship even if it means sailing all the way to Peru. But in order to complete his mission, he must face the challenges of the Horn, an unnerving discovery, French privateers, political intrigue and even deception and unrest amongst his own crew. THE TAINTED PRIZE is a classic age-of-sail nautical fiction adventure and the second in the series following FLOATING GOLD.
Book 3 in the Oliver Quintrell Series, sees Captain Quintrell facing life-threatening events over which he has no control. Ordered to sail to Gibraltar in the late summer of 1804, his ship soon becomes hemmed in, not by Spanish gunboats or French ships of the line, but by the Quarantine Regulations which close the port around him. Unable to halt the loss of life from a raging epidemic, he strives to do his part to help save the Colony when it is at its most vulnerable.
This nautical fiction adventure is based on actual events which took place in and around Gibraltar between August and December, 1804, including a major sea battle. It shows how ignorance and prejudice can exist in a ship, and presents a startling portrait of life at Gibraltar – a British settlement ruled by a military garrison where naval power was only an incidental force.
With a few new faces adding colour and intrigue to life below decks, the regular crew of His Majesty’s frigate ‘Perpetual’ embarks on another dangerous and exciting seafaring adventure.
Heading north along the coast of Brazil, the captain is aware of the danger posed by French ships patrolling those waters. But he is unaware of the undercurrent of unrest simmering aboard the third rate.
When insurrection turns to mutiny and the life of every man aboard the 74 is threatened, Captain Quintrell and the crew of HM frigate Perpetual must do all they can to bring those responsible to justice.
Badly treated and battling the inequalities that females suffered in the 19th century, three young women display pluck, determination and courage as they struggle to overcome adversity. Though their stories are completely different, they have one quality in common – they all possess true Yorkshire Grit.
SEA DUST is set in the Yorkshire harbour-town of Whitby where the death of her new-born infant and the cruel nature of her husband makes Emma determined to escape his clutches. With the help of a French sailor she plans to stowaway on a ship bound for Australia. But things never go quite as planned.
THROUGH GLASS EYES is Lucy Oldfield's story beginning on the day she succumbs to temptation and steals a rare and expensive French doll from her dying mistress. The tumultuous ups and downs of the next 20 years of her life are often reflected in the eyes of the doll.
THE BLACK THREAD is set on Yorkshire’s Leeds/Liverpool canal in the dark days before the turn of the century. It is a dramatic tale. In an attempt to escape the man who haunts her, Amy Dodd has nowhere to run to but along the canal's bank. Along the way she discovers the awful truth about the man who is pursuing her.
When commanded to go to the nether ends of the globe during the Peace of Amiens, Captain Quintrell cannot conceive what manner of dangers await him (FLOATING GOLD).
After one successful mission, war with France resumes and Quintrell is despatched on another secret mission far from the sea-lanes of Europe (THE TAINTED PRIZE).
In 1804, with his regular crew aboard, Oliver is commanded to assist in the defense of Gibraltar. But the insidious enemy that confronts him is both deadly and unforgiving in whom it targets (ADMIRALTY ORDERS).
But Gibraltar is not the end of the series - Book 4 (THE UNFORTUNATE ISLES) is on the market and Book 5 will be published late in 2016.
With her thirst for adventure, Cynthia Beresford refuses to be constrained by the standards demanded of her by aristocratic Victorian society. She not only rides like a man, but desires other privileges enjoyed by the gentlemen of her era. Searching for excitement, she forgoes the luxuries of life at Huntingley and embarks on a riding expedition across the Pampas of Patagonia.
Though little is known of that inhospitable land, she is undeterred and boards a steamer in Liverpool bound for South America. Accompanying her on the voyage are her father and twin brother, her brother’s friend – a playwright, and her faithful Newfoundland dogs.
On the outward passage, Thia meets a mysterious Welshman, Euan Davies and when the party disembarks from the steamer on the Strait of Magellan, Davies agrees to accompany them on the ride and act as their guide. But after only a week in the saddle, his disturbing secret starts to unravel. Soon Thia’s party find themselves embroiled in a deadly game of cat and mouse with a group of dangerous prison escapees.
Beset by Indians, inhospitable terrain, pampas winds and mountain lions, is it possible this mismatched group of travellers can survive their adventure at the tail end of the world?
“The Condor’s Feather is a tale of travel and adventure replete with the sorts of events those wonderful old films always feature – the strong silent cowboy, jail breaks, bad hombres who will stop at nothing and a hint of romance. Set within the beauty of a savage and untamed landscape.” MyShelf.com
Emma Quinlan is desperate to escape from her cruel husband and make a new life for herself far from the Yorkshire fishing village where she lives. Lost and dejected, she climbs the steps which lead to the ruins of Whitby Abbey.
Here, on the windswept East Cliff, overlooking the North Sea, she has a chance encounter with a French seaman. Yet despite the stories she has heard about sailors, she allows him to help her stowaway on a ship bound for Australia. But, as the ship sails from England, Emma discovers that even at sea, danger still stalks her, and by the time it arrives in Cape Town, dramatic events unfold.
If Emma is to survive the voyage to Australia, it will take all her physical and mental strength. But how will she cope with the challenges which lie ahead? And who will share the new life with her?
These four short stories are all very different but were the product of my memory and imagination. Two are factual with fictional dressings, the other two are fiction stories influenced by fact.
Some of the characters depicted are real. Others are constructs.
For me, when the distinction between fact and fiction becomes blurred, the result is often uncanny.
I invite you, the reader, to open the door on disbelief and be the judge.
Sam to the Rescue: When Sam learns that Fred, the fisherman is stuck in the lake; he has to seek help from the other scarecrows. With the big billy goat, Gentleman James, the clown on stilts, and the sailor; the scarecrows manage to pull the fisherman out of the lake.
Sam's first adventure was told in the story, "The Day the Scarecrows came to Town."
Sam is always pleased to see his friends and hopes to see them again before too long.