It is 1853, and on holiday in Italy, Captain Nicholas Carey is persuaded by his impulsive cousin Andrew to help three Italian revolutionaries avoid capture and escape the Papal States. After returning to England, Nicholas runs his cousin to earth in Paris, where he is still involved with the revolutionaries, and the two foil an assassination attempt on the Emperor, Napoleon III.
Rejoining his regiment, Nicholas is sent to fight the Russians with Lord Raglan’s army in the Crimea, where he experiences the horrors of a Crimean winter and distinguishes himself in the Battles of Sebastopol and The Redan.
About Ronald Welch and the Carey Novels
Ronald Welch’s 12 Carey novels, written between 1954 and 1972, follow the fortunes of the same family from their involvement in the Crusades to their service in the First World War. Grippingly plotted and scrupulously researched, together they join up the dots of English history in a remarkably vivid and human way.
Welch was a historian who served as a Tank Corps officer in the Second World War and in 1947 became Headmaster of Okehampton Grammar School in Devon. He was, by all accounts, an inspiring teacher, and he certainly knew how to bring history alive for younger readers. You can’t finish a Welch book without having grasped such precise details as the construction of a crusader’s armour and why it was so designed, or why the longbow was crucial to the English victory at the Battle of Crécy. Most importantly they’re brilliant reads – fast-paced, colourful and imaginative, with entirely believable central characters. The Careys are a distinguished Welsh landowning family and are involved in all the great events of their times, from the plots against Elizabeth I and the Civil War to the Peninsular War, the Crimea and the Indian Mutiny.
The original editions, published by Oxford University Press and illustrated by some of the best book illustrators of their day, are now almost impossible to find and fetch prohibitive prices. We’re delighted to make these wonderful books available again, with their original illustrations, in an elegantly designed and highly collectable series.