Author: James McGee, 2008.
Genre: Historical Fiction. Spy Fiction. Regency England.
Other Details: Hardback. 412 pages.
In this third outing for ex-soldier turned Bow Street Runner Matthew Hawkwood he undertakes a special assignment for the Royal Navy to try to discover the fate of two Naval officers, who had been sent to investigate reports of escapes of prisoners of war from the hulks, the former man-o-wars that now serve as floating prisons. The body of one officer had washed up along the coast while the reader is aware from the prologue that the other had been hunted down and murdered.
Rather than following in the footsteps of the missing officers the Admiralty decides to send Hawkwood in undercover posing as an American fighting on the side of the French hoping that he will be able to be able to discover the nature of the escape route. However, in the course of the assignment he uncovers a much more sinister plot that could cost England the war.
This proved another thrilling instalment in this series. I was a little concerned about Hawkwood's assignment on the prison ship, given the horrific conditions on board. Still McGee used this effectively and soon moved the action to land as Hawkwood follows the route taken by other escaped prisoners. The action sequences were excellent as was the historical detail.
I enjoy this series very much and certainly plan on reading the next one as well as keeping an eye out for future novels.