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McNaughten: A Novel - Sian Busby

McNaughten: A Novel - Sian Busby

Title: McNaughten

Author:  Sian Busby

ISBN:  9781906021054

Weight:  990 g

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Lined and dated signed first edition, first printing



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Our price:  £19.95

McNaughten by Sian Busby

The winter of 1843 is one of bitter strife for England.  The nation is on the brink of ruin and revolution, the government struggling to stand firm against the rising chaos.

Out of this apocalyptic landscape emerges a young Scotsman, Daniel McNaughten.  He has been on a journey, a descent into his own despair, mirroring the tribulations of society at large.  His journey will end in London, with the death of an apparently innocent man.  One freezing day in January, he takes a shot at the Prime Minister’s Private Secretary, Edward Drummond, as he makes his way to Downing Street.  The incident rocks the nation.

Has the assassin perhaps mistaken Mr. Drummond for the Prime Minister, Sir Robert Peel?  And who is this McNaughten?  A dangerous political radical – possibly the agent of an entire network of revolutionaries – or a religious fanatic?  Is he a lunatic, or merely a victim of the collective madness that surrounds him?

Sian Busby’s debut novel is a breathtaking feat of historical scholarship, which takes you to the heart of the Victorian soul.  As Daniel McNaughten goes on trial, the dark forces lying beneath the surface of society threaten to break loose and overturn the very order of things.  Suddenly, the nation’s sanity seems to be hanging on the destiny of one hapless individual.  The verdict against him will change English law forever.

Peer & Press Reviews

Mcnaughten has an intricacy and sentimentality worthy of Dickens and a satirical eye as sharp as Thackeray’s… A gripping thriller, rich, clever, absorbing and extremely hard to fault …a witty look at men in power and a plot that shocks with an extraordinary twist.


Written with verve, Sian Busby infiltrates the heart and soul of the Victorian world, which uncannily parallels our own.

Daily Telegraph

This ingenious fact-into-fiction novel makes a fine, marvellously readable, melodramatic meal of the case that established the ‘McNaughten Rules’.

Saga Magazine

Bibliographic Info

Attribute Details
Title McNaughten
Sub title A Novel
Book Features
Edition / printing First edition, first printing
Overall condition Fine / Fine (see our article on Condition Grades)
Signed On the title page
Lined “It was the season of distress…”
Dated 9th May '09
Book Stats
Publisher Short Books
Publication date
Printed by Clays Ltd, Bungay
ISBN 13 9781906021054
ISBN 10 1906021058
Format Hardcover with dust jacket
Pages 475
Size (h x w x d) 224 x 145 x 46mm
Packed weight 1.034kg [heavy book]
Image and Design Credits
Author photograph David Barron
Jacket design Gavin Morris
Jacket illustration Steph Von Reiswitz

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