* This wide-ranging tale of Victorian espionage is a light-hearted romp through the first half of the 19th century.
Dwarfish Charlie Boylan carries a loaded pistol into the House of Commons. A can of worms waiting to be opened, he was a police spy for nearly forty years. He wants a pension and what he knows will get it! Did he, between Waterloo and Wellington's funeral, cause the Peterloo riot to happen Was it Charlie who fingered the Cato Street Conspirators Did Shelley really drown by accident And at the opening of the Great Exhibition was it he who saved the Queen from being blown up
With dark undertones in its revelations of the orchestrated state repression that followed the Napoleonic Wars, A Very English Agent drives a horse, well, a donkey and cart, through the early years of the nineteenth century in a rumbustious, funny, sexy, teeming novel, worthy of the times it describes.
As historical fiction this could be about as good as it gets... arresting, informative and entertaining and shows Rathbone at the peak of his considerable powers...fantastic - ROSS LECKIE, The TIMES
For rollicking period fiction with a razor-sharp mind behind it, the book would be hard to better. - David Robson, Sunday TELEGRAPH
His tale is never less than imaginative and entertaining. - OBSERVER