- Mark Ellot
- ARRSE Rating
- 3.5 Mushroom Heads
This is Mark Ellot’s second novel (the first being Ransom) after several collections of short stories. He has an easy-going style, coupled with a clear depth of research, that makes the narrative believable. He has the potential to develop a ‘Sharpe-like’ character which could be widened into a series of books – he certainly has the building blocks in place – a free flowing plot, a sense of gritty military realism and likeable characters who the reader can identify with.
The story itself follows Ewan McLeod, a serving army officer, who is placed within the Jacobite Rising to report on future intent. As the Jacobite Rising moves south, against little credible opposition, he has to juggle his loyalty to the crown, his own empathy with the Jacobite cause and a growing sense that there are other forces at play. The twisting plots, and counter-plots, provide a compelling framework for the wider historical references.
I would recommend this as a good holiday read, especially for those who enjoy military historical novels.