Light up the Palace at Hampton Court   Recently updated !

It was one of the happiest days of my life when I found The Tudors on Netflix. Okay, I also own it on DVD, but there’s something really satisfying about spending a few hours lazing on the sofa, remote control in hand isn’t there? Anyway, I’ve been binge watching it all over again over the […]



Swallows and Amazons at Bristol Old Vic 2   Recently updated !

Swallows and Amazons: Photo: Bristol Old Vic/Simon Annand. I’ll admit that thanks to a combination of depression, illness and other assorted woes, I haven’t been feeling as festive as I might otherwise have done as we hurtle through December. I’m a bit upset about this to be honest as I usually love this time of […]

From Whitechapel Book Launch 4   Recently updated !

From Whitechapel has been well and truly launched! On a dark and gloomy evening last week, a group of various misfits gathered together in the historic Gun pub next to Spitalfields Market to celebrate the publication of my fifth novel, which is set during the Jack the Ripper murders of 1888. The location was extremely […]



Joséphine crowned, 2nd December 1804 3   Recently updated !

Sunday, the second of December 1804 was the coldest day of the year, with snow overnight and freezing rain the next morning, which turned the streets of Paris to slush. Spirits in the French capital were still high though for it was the much anticipated day of Napoléon’s coronation at the hands of Pope Pius […]

Stormbird – Conn Iggulden   Recently updated !

‘King Henry V – the great Lion of England – is long dead. In 1437, after years of regency, the pious and gentle Henry VI, the Lamb, comes of age and accedes to the English throne. His poor health and frailty of mind render him a weakling king -Henry depends on his closest men, Spymaster […]



Marie de Guise 9   Recently updated !

Marie de Guise, Corneille de Lyon, c1537. Photo: National Galleries of Scotland. It’s probably no secret that my next novel, The Thistle Queen will be about Marie de Guise, the mother of Mary, Queen of Scots. I actually set out to write about Mary but then found myself pushing the start of the book further […]

A Real Life Sherlock – Guest post by Angela Buckley 5   Recently updated !

On the evening of 6 December 1886, Arthur Foster left the Queen’s Theatre, Manchester, with a pocket full of gold and a bejewelled lady on his arm. He hailed a hansom cab and as the couple settled into the carriage, a shadowy figure slipped in beside them. The yellow light of a gas lamp revealed […]


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Elizabeth and Philip: a Royal Wedding, 1947 2   Recently updated !

Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip, Baron Studios, 1947. Photo: Royal Collection Trust/© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2014. When Princess Elizabeth, the eldest daughter of George VI announced her engagement to the extremely handsome Prince Philip of Greece on the 9th of July 1947, the people of Britain were, quite understandably, thrilled. The war had […]

Grand Duchess Olga   Recently updated !

Empress Alexandra Feodorovna of Russia, with Grand Duchess Olga Nicholaievna, Pasetti, 1896. Photo: Royal Collection Trust/© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2014. ‘Tsarskoe Selo A day I will remember for ever, during which I suffered a very very great deal. At about 2 o’ clock, dear Mama arrived from Gatchina; she, Ella and I were […]

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Peaky Blinders   Recently updated !

I don’t watch much television (and when I do, it is never live so I’m always a bit behind anyway) so I’m terribly late to the Peaky Blinders party. However, once I’d discovered its existence, I was smitten and then hooked and of course totally amazed that it took me so long to watch it […]

Anxiety   Recently updated !

At this very moment, there’s two major events happening that I should be at. One is the third annual Mumsnet Blogfest in London (which I spoke at in 2012), a huge gathering of bloggers who have travelled from all over the country to network, learn and share information and the other is the Jack the […]

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Princess Mary Stuart   Recently updated !

One of my all time favourite characters (she was a bit of a scene stealer in my novel Minette, about her younger sister, Henrietta), Princess Mary Henrietta Stuart was born on the fourth of November 1631 in St James’ Palace, London, the eldest daughter of Charles I and his tiny, exquisite French wife Henrietta Maria. […]

The Winter Crown – Elizabeth Chadwick   Recently updated !

It is the winter of 1154 and Eleanor, Queen of England, is biding her time. While her husband King Henry II battles for land across the channel, Eleanor fulfils her duty as acting ruler and bearer of royal children. But she wants to be more than this – if only Henry would let her. Instead, […]



Marie Antoinette and the Petit Trianon   Recently updated !

The Petit Trianon is a sumptuous jewellery box of a house, tucked away in the Versailles park. Designed in 1762 by Ange-Jacques Gabriel and paid for by Louis XV, it was intended as a present for Madame de Pompadour – its elegant lines a perfect setting for her own delicate, exquisite beauty. Sadly, however, Madame […]

The Marriage of Figaro at the ENO   Recently updated !

Despite having been dragged up by massive opera buffs, I’d never actually managed to see an actual real life opera. UNTIL NOW. Yes, that’s right, I can strike yet another thing off my frankly dispiriting and dolphin free bucket list. And it was probably the one thing on there that my poor long suffering husband […]

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Berlin Part Three   Recently updated !

Although we’d heard that Sunday brunch is a traditional part of Berliner culture, we decided instead to head out to Friedrichshain for a much anticipated vegan kebab at Vöner. I’d been looking forward to this absolute treat for MONTHS so you can imagine how excited I was as we hopped on to the tram and […]

Berlin – Part Two   Recently updated !

We woke up bright and early on our second morning in Berlin and after some deliberation decided to head off to Museum Island to partake in some CULTURE. After eyeing the queue to get into the Pergamon, we decided instead to visit the rather less busy Neues Museum, which houses the iconic bust of Nefertiti. […]

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