The Gallows Pole
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An England divided. From his remote moorland home, David Hartley assembles a gang of weavers and land-workers to embark upon a criminal enterprise that will capsize the economy and become the biggest fraud in British history.They are the Cragg Vale Coiners and their business is ‘clipping’ – the forging of coins, a treasonous offence punishable by death.A charismatic leader, Hartley cares for the poor and uses violence and intimidation against his opponents. He is also prone to self-delusion and strange visions of mythical creatures.When excise officer William Deighton vows to bring down the Coiners and one of their own becomes turncoat, Hartley’s empire begins to crumble. With the industrial age set to change the face of England forever, the fate of his empire is under threat.Forensically assembled from historical accounts and legal documents, The Gallows Pole is a true story of resistance that combines poetry, landscape, crime and historical fiction, whose themes continue to resonate. Here is a rarely-told alternative history of the North.
The Gallows Pole may well turn out to be 2017's His Bloody Project. It's a windswept, brutal tale of eighteenth-century Yorkshire told in starkly beautiful prose." - Alex Preston, The Guardian;"Terrific: illuminating, gripping and deeply rooted in its setting. The description of a popular uprising against the rich establishment has many links with our current political climate that makes it thought-provoking and vital." - Amy Liptrot, author of The Outrun; "Myers is the master of English rural noir" - Paul Kingsnorth, author of The Wake and Beast; "His prose is beautifully controlled and so graphic it's impossible not to picture the scenes he conjures up in striking detail. There is no hiding place from the darkness because the writing is so damned good." - Val McDermid; "A glass of whisky, fireplace, rain-lashing-the-window sort of book. Make the whisky cask strength." - Cynan Jones, author of The Dig and Cove; "Myers' captivating tale of the Cragg Vale Coiners is as wild and full of life - in all its beauty and brutality - as stags on the Yorkshire moors." - Wyl Menmuir, author of MAN BOOKER listed - The Many; "In Ben Myers's writing, you can smell the rot, feel the wet weight of mud on your skin, hear the birdsong and muttered threats and prayers to old gods, actually taste, on the tongue, the copper and sweat and wild fungus. And you can reel at the dizzying depths of history he finds in a scrap of land; the intoxicating, exhilarating mines of buried epics he discovers. This is where we come from." - Niall Griffiths
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