BY THE BANKS OF THE RHEIDOL
A historical novel set mainly in Ceredigion, Wales, with twin themes of local industry and romance. Dafydd, a young lead miner, is forced to flee after a violent confrontation with a group of bullies.
He runs to the port of Aberystwyth where an acquaintance, Gwen, helps him and he slowly begins to rebuild his life. After a fire destroys his employer’s business, he is sent to nearby Talybont to help in the building of a new railway. An opportunity arises for an apprenticeship in Stafford and Dafydd begs Gwen to come with him, but she refuses, promising to wait for him.
Eventually Dafydd gets the chance to return to Aberystwyth and work on the building of the new Rheidol railway. Very soon he is faced by three dilemmas: How to progress as a railwayman, how to reconnect with his family and how to find Gwen.
When he finds her, she has met another, more well-to-do, man. He is left with the seemingly impossible task of trying to win her back.
A historical novel, set in Flanders and Aberystwyth at the beginning of the First World War, with themes of conflict and romance against the backdrop of the railway industry.
1915. Dafydd is now established as a fireman working on the Cambrian Railway. Ten years after parting with the love of his life, Gwen, he is ready to return home to Aberystwyth. But the country is at war. Men have left to fight in Flanders and many have already paid the ultimate price. Soon, Dafydd is drawn into the conflict and his world changes forever.
Despite the Railway Corps being away from the front line, Dafydd still finds it is still fraught with danger and confusion. Even in Flanders, he cannot escape the memory of his former love and must face a dilemma – to return to the past or move forward into the future?
THE TURN OF THE WHEEL
A historical novel set in the metal mining community of Mid Wales, charting the rite of passage of a young lead miner.
In February 1873, Owain Thomas begins his first day at Frongoch lead mine in the wild uplands of Cardiganshire.
The terraced industrial towns of the south are alien to the people in this small community in West Wales. The horse is still king and water turns the great wheels that power the machinery.
Owain’s romantic dreams of starting a man’s job are soon dashed in the cramped tunnels. He learns quickly
to carve his own path in life, aided by the Cornish miner David Treveglos. Life is hard in the close-knit mining community. People cling to the old traditions and religion for support.
Owain befriends Ceridwen Hughes, daughter of the violent, ostracised miner, Gomer. As he reaches maturity,
Owain is faced with the dilemma of protecting his family and Ceri from harm and keeping his job. When faced with danger, will the measure of the man come through and his deeds be repaid – for good or ill?
A TIME OF GOODBYES
A historical novel set in late 19th Century Ceredigion, telling the story of a lead mining family’s progress through changing times.
1881. Owain Thomas is now an established miner at Frongoch in the hinterlands of Cardiganshire. His fortune tied to the tribute earned from the lead and zinc ore raised from the earth.
The mine is trying to survive amid competition from the New World and the miners struggle to survive with falling income. Owain and Ceri protect their family, as their children grow, but there are many trials to overcome along the way. In a time of saying farewell to old faces and welcoming new, they are helped by friends when things look their bleakest. There are, however, still many people of whom to be wary.
Can Owain overcome these troubles and will his relationship with the steadfast Ceri be the stronger or the weaker for it?
A novel set in Estonia during the period 1940-1943, with twin themes of escape and romance.
Märt runs a small bakery in the centre of Estonia. His life is shattered on the night of the ‘Red Terror’, when he is told his name is one of the thousands marked for deportation by the Soviets to Siberia.
His informer asks him to take a British spy, Harry, to Finland. Harry will not reveal the reason for travelling to a country allied to England’s enemy, nor why he is also avoiding the rampaging Germans.
They make their way north, where they encounter the Estonian battallion of the Finnish Army, the ‘Finnish Boys’. Märt joins up and, in the turmoil of the war, is left with the dilemma of who to trust; Harry, with his mysterious mission or Märt’s estranged wife, Maarja, who will do what she believes is best for Estonia?
December 1918: The royal navy sends a squadron of ships to the fledgling Estonian nation to aid their fight for independence. When the squadron is due to depart, a young navy officer jumps ship, sacrificing his career for the love of a woman – but the navy reclaims its own. Huw Williams is dragged back to his homeland in disgrace.
Years later, the world is at war again. Huw is scratching a living on the docks when the past comes to call. He is flung into covert operations in a land caught between two armies, and a people living under threat of instant death or deportation to oblivion in Siberia. Huw soon finds out that killers are on his track.
He joins the Forest Brothers, the partisans living secretly amongst the silver birches of Estonia. There, ghosts of his past life emerge. This is not the return to romantic dreams he had imagined. Nevertheless, an old flame rekindles, and the once embittered Huw rediscovers his desire to help save the country and the people he loves – but how can he do either, forced to live as a fugitive in the forest?