Alice awakens in a psychiatric hospital believing she is the daughter of a 16th century executioner. Is she insane, or has a portal opened to a past life where she and her outlaw lover are hunted by a corrupt noble and his henchmen? What is the true agenda of Paul, the handsome young doctor who befriends her? Why will intelligence agencies kill to possess her? Are cosmic fAlice awakens in a psychiatric hospital believing she is the daughter of a 16th century executioner. Is she insane, or has a portal opened to a past life where she and her outlaw lover are hunted by a corrupt noble and his henchmen? What is the true agenda of Paul, the handsome young doctor who befriends her? Why will intelligence agencies kill to possess her? Are cosmic forces in play to change both past and future? The Headsman's Daughter is a thrilling genre mash-up in novel form. Think Games Of Thrones meets The Bourne Identity on Freaky Friday. It's a ripping yarn for progressives, a sardonic take on agitprop fiction that explores themes of political corruption, social change, justice, destiny, and timeless love. It's an action packed roller coaster ride with surprising twists and turns along the way, plus a bit of metaphysics thrown in for good measure. This is the first in a series of adventures for Alice, an 18 year old girl, both pure and fierce of heart......
|Title||:||The Headsman's Daughter|
|Number of Pages||:||248 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
The Headsman's Daughter Reviews
Brian Trenchard-Smith is an icon of the Australian film industry. He almost single-handedly defined the film genre Ozploitation with films like 'Turkey Shoot', 'Death Cheaters', and 'Dead-end Drive-in'. He is also one of the good guys - and if his first fiction novel was anything less than a rollicking good read, I would have been bitterly disappointed. I was not disappointed. 'Alice Through the Multiverse' is the story of a woman either stuck in a glitch in time, or suffering from a multiple personality disorder. Like Sassenach in 'The Outlander' (TV series - I haven't read those books) she brings an old word charm to the present, and a gutsy nowness to the past. Trenchard-Smith's writing style owes more to Pulp Fiction than Proust in this yarn of memory and time, which has a snappy pace and rock solid action sequences. It's fun. Enjoy the ride.
I picked up this book after talking with the author, Brian Trenchard-Smith on ThirdScribe. He had posted some pics of him fencing, and, being a fellow fencer, we got to talking. When his book was available on Kindle, I picked it up figuring that at least the fight scenes would be good.And they were — as was the rest of the book.At the start, it seemed the book was going to be a sort of mash up between “Outlander” and “Kill Bill” with a young lady, Alice, the title’s headsman daughter, being kidnapped in pre-Elizabethan England, and arriving in modern London. She’s carted off to a mental institution and the “out of time girl gets caught in modern conspiracy” plot begins. I thought I had this whole story mapped out in the first 50 pages.I was wrong. Way wrong.Because about 30% into the book, Jane showed up. And my entire concept of this book went out the window.Was Alice even real, or was she Jane’s fantasy? Is Jane crazy? Is Alice? From here it started to look like a “girl with DID gets caught in modern conspiracy” thriller.Wrong again.Well, not totally — it is a very taut and well written modern thriller. The author is well versed in the genre, and while this is his first novel, it is not his first story. Brian Trenchard-Smith is a successful film director, and that sense of story, pacing, and dialog shows very well in the book.He may be a new novelist, but he is an excellent writer and storyteller.As engaging as the main story line of “The Headsman’s Daughter” is — and it is very engaging — the real dig that kept me going was trying to figure out just what the heck is “Alice/Jane”? Is she even real, and, if so, which aspect?The mirroring of past and current events that is seen throughout this book is a trick that has been used before, but rarely this well or with this amount of depth. The author moves effortlessly between these two worlds, and, at times, so do the characters — though I’ll stop there for risk of spoilers. And the conclusion is clear, defined, and satisfying – while leaving a tiny bit of wiggle room for another round (which I hope to read some day).Bottom line: An excellent and intriguing thriller, with a fascinating wrinkle that will keep you reading to the end.
The Headsman's Daughter is a fantastic read! Alice wakes up in a psychiatric ward in 2020, believing she is the daughter of a 16th century executioner. Thus begins a riveting, suspenseful, action-packed international spy conspiracy set across two timelines. The plot with draw you in - kept me up til 1.30am, couldn't put it down. Can't give to much plot detail - spoilers! But well worth a read!!!!I received this as a Goodreads Giveaway in exchange for honest feedback.
I received this book from a goodreads giveaway. I was pleasantly surprised by Brian's quick delivery! While I was a bit hesitant at first due to some graphic descriptions at the beginning (did I just start reading a gore book?!), it ended up being a very captivating read and I enjoyed it a lot. It was a very interesting plot line and well done.
I loved this book. It is a tremendously involving story and it is beautifully written. It's quite a page-turner. I love the expert way the author does setups and payoffs. He does a flawless job of weaving together compelling characters and storylines.
I had a lot higher hopes for this book. This might be because I was seduced by a title that seemed to hint at an Alice in Wonderland-esque novel, with a hint of physics. This is NOT what this is! Instead it is a crime/thriller, of sorts, with hints of time travel and where one of the characters happens to be named Alice. The author, Trenchard-Smith, is a screen writer and as a result the book is written in this style, where the character's thoughts and motivation that are being described can change quickly, usually by paragraph, sometimes mid sentence, as the story unfolds. So one minute we are reading about why the hereo has taken a particular course of action, then it jumps to some background story from the perspective of the bad guy. It's not a style I am used to, or enjoy, as I found it a little lazy at times: it means characters background, thoughts and motivations could just be explained outright without having to be inferred from the story. The story itself is kind of interesting, but very light on any science (again I felt the title misled me) and the characters lack any real depth. Finally, the book is set around London, England and I was a little annoyed by some English innacuarcies that could have been easily rectified. For example, I first picked up the author was not English when the term soccer not football was used by an English character who was supposedly obessesed by the game (no English football fan would ever call it soccer - never, ever!) Also, a small point: the location of Brixton station is on the wrong underground line and not a terminating station in this multiverse, which I found a little annoying and could have been easily solved with minimal research. Overall a quick, easy read but not a memorable or engaging novel.
What Brian Trenchard-Smith has given us here is a compulsively readable page-turner that, once started, is impossible to put down. Trenchard-Smith has expertly crafted two simultaneous worlds, one in the distant past and one in the present, that are both authentic and fully-realized, populated by noble, heroic characters whom we gleefully root for, and reprehensible villains whose (hopeful) comeuppance we anticipate with every turn of the page. Our heroine Alice is our conduit as she bounces back and forth between the two worlds, trying to evade wrongful capture and punishment from figures both in the past and by their analogues in the modern day. It is to Trenchard-Smith's credit as a storyteller that both story lines (which mirror each other in ways both expected and unexpected) are equally compelling, and the segues between the two periods are smooth and never jarring. Recommended for those who enjoy period pieces, contemporary action/thrillers, and just plain good story telling.
I received this novel via a goodreads giveaway. The following caught my attention: Alice awakens in a psychiatric hospital believing she is the daughter of a 16th century executioner. Is she insane, or has a portal opened to a past life where she and her outlaw lover are hunted by a corrupt noble and his henchmen?The novel begins in the 16th century with an execution and a mob. Alice the daughter of the executioner (headsman) has managed to escape, but after running away she returns to consciousness in the 21st century as an unwilling patient of a mental institution. Alice believes that she truly is the daughter of a 16th century British headsmen. She is not at all comfortable with the people surrounding her, especially those who have through some type of sorcery, followed her from one life to another. Then she sees him, the handsome American doctor, who in reality is a CIA operative seeking rogue operatives on the loss in England. To Alice, the man who calls himself Paul has changed only slightly, wearing his hair shorter and different clothing; but she knows him for who he truly is, her beloved James. Paul feels a link to the girl and when his operation goes south, he helps her escape the mental institution, heading for a safe house. After getting Alice into the house, Paul is hit in the head and knocked unconscious. When he awakens he is bound, the woman standing before him now claims to be Jane, a wild card to say the least. Although Jane has spent her life slipping into the mind of 16th century Alice, it has always been for mere seconds, suddenly all of that has changed. As Jane continuously slips into the life of Alice, the periods which she remains in another century continue to become longer and longer. She and James struggle to elude capture by the Spanish Inquisitor and his henchman; while in the 21st century Alice/Jane & Paul must elude rogue operatives. The question that must be asked is Jane crazy or has some type of portal opened to only her, and will the right personality be in Jane’s body when Paul most needs her help? Round and round the plot tightens to the point of breaking, but who will survive and who will parish? This is one of the best books I have read this year.
The opening of ‘The Headman’s Daughter’ is immediately engaging as we see into the minds of three men as they trundle towards their execution with vivid description, such as ‘impotent rage curdles into self-pity’. We’re quickly moved to the executioner and his sons, with fascinating insights into their peculiar profession, as they wait in the square, and his daughter Alice who just so happens to be involved with one of the prisoners, James De Fries. The plot is a rollercoaster ride through time. At one point, Alice wakes up to find herself in a present day psychiatric hospitals as she gazes out of the window at those she describes as ‘The Lost’ playing croquet on a lawn outside. Brian Trenchard-Smith is a Wordsmith with dialogue and description equal to Jamila Gavin’s award-winning novel ‘Coram Boy’ in the sections of the novel that take part in the past. The present day scenes have so many details pertinent to our rather silly present day ways, describing something as ‘more exciting than a panda born on Youtube.’ Trenchard-Smith’s director’s eye translates extremely well to prose and I could easily see this as a film, and hope I shall.