& RECOMMENDED READING
'Not Much of a Souldier' by David Christie (Diadem Books)
On 21st August 1689, the newly raised and quite untried Regiment of my Lord Angus (The Cameronians) defeated a Highland army ten times their own strength at Dunkeld, Perthshire. The Highlanders, had just defeated a considerably stronger government army at Killiecrankie and, had they prevailed at Dunkeld, would have been able to advance unopposed to Edinburgh, with then every chance of fundamentally changing British history by restoring James VII and II to the throne, with the direct support of Louis XIV of France.
History tells us why the Covenanters, from whom the Cameronians were recruited, opposed the later Stuarts. In this meticulously researched novel, developed from his doctoral thesis, Christie explains how they were able to form such an effective force so quickly.
The book covers the 'Killing Time' from the Battle of Drumclog in 1679 to Dunkeld, and explores the development and character of the key players, in particular William Cleland, the Cameronians' 28-year old commanding officer and Alexander Shields, their equally youthful - and influential - chaplain. In describing the extraordinary efforts of the Stuart governments to suppress the Covenanters and their attendant cruelty, he does not paint a totally black picture of, for example, John Graham of Claverhouse; and acknowledges that some of the 'good guys' were not the nicest people.
This is a cracking adventure story, reminiscent of 'Kidnapped', but serves a serious purpose in making better known a crucial but largely ignored incident in not just Scottish but British history and illustrating how the conduct of a hastily recruited, largely untrained group of soldiers on one day in 1689 established an ethos that imbued their successors until the day they marched out of the Army List and into history 279 years later.
Published by Diadem Books
A Coming Storm - Book Two: The Lion of Barossa
- by Peter Craigie
"Lion of Barossa" takes forward the story of the young American Charles George MacPherson and his friends Thomas and Mary Graham.
After the Gordon Riots in London Charles travels with his friends to Portugal and Spain before returning to America, where he finds wealth and unexpected, but fleeting, happiness. He is then summoned to France where Mary Graham is seriously ill. After her death the two friends are caught up in the horrors of the French revolutionary Terror and Thomas decides to take a hand in the war by raising his own regiment. Eventually overcoming official opposition, Thomas at last achieves a permanent commission and at Barossa becomes a hero in his own right.
Publisher: Lulu.com - click for details
Printed: 232 pages, 15.24 cm x 22.86 cm, perfect binding, black and white interior ink
Copyright: © 2008 Peter Craigie / United Kingdom