Review: Daniel by Craig Simpson
PUBLISHED: 14:49 26 May 2015 | UPDATED: 14:50 26 May 2015
Annette Shaw reviews Daniel by Craig Simpson
Published by ALSVITH BOOKS hardback £12.99
The feeling about this book is that apart from being an excellent read, it would make a terrific Sunday teatime, television series. Although written for age 10+ Daniel has a much broader appeal and again, it’s a chance to brush up on English history. The book has goodies and baddies, a young woman handy with a sword, a splash of heroism and a few grim bits like keel hauling - although the boy subjected to it does survive. Loved it!
The idea came to writer Craig Simpson when he was on one of his many holiday in Devon. “We were exploring caves on the South Hams and to begin with I pondered on smugglers. Then I began to delve back into events in Torbay and the landing by William of Orange. And the book began to take shape.” What Craig created is a swashbuckling adventure set against the backdrop of the Glorious Revolution of 1688.
All of the main characters have their own motives within the story. For some it is about power and control, others it is about personal gain. Daniel is desperate to save his mother, imprisoned in Dartmouth gaol and heading towards a trial for spying for the Dutch prince. As the story unravels Daniel hears of a family connection with the Caribbean and the father he never knew. With many references to Dartmouth and Kingsbridge this is definitely one to take to the beach this summer - for teenagers of all ages.
Daniel is the twelfth book penned by this award-winning Hampshire children’s author. Furthermore, Craig is using his latest to raise funds in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust and will be doing talks and signings in Devon this summer. Before achieving literary success, Craig was a biochemist. “I worked for big pharma and one of my colleagues was the Medical Director of Cancer Research. I thought long and hard at the area I’d like to help and was impressed by the work of the Teenage Cancer Trust. Their specialist centres received design input from patients and the result is a caring environment that nurtures quality of life in difficult circumstances. “