Now his readers can look forward to the roller-coaster ride of his debut novel – A Man Against a Background of Flames. This exciting page-turner offers a surprising twist on English religious history, presenting a challenging take on contemporary politics.
The story kicks off when James Appleby, an adulterous but good-humoured history lecturer, is given the chance to research the papers hidden in a mysterious Elizabethan chest. The secrets that emerge push his career from stagnant mediocrity to the fast track as a reluctant figurehead of a new global spiritual movement. Fans he may have, but religious fundamentalists of all stripes are soon on Appleby’s case as well.
It’s a riotous journey that sees the endearing historian face up to snide academics and hit men while trying to juggle his painfully complicated love-life. Expertise in Tudor country life wasn’t supposed to be controversial, but Appleby is now at the centre of a story which races between Elizabethan Wiltshire, Amsterdam, Washington, New York and across contemporary England.
Hoggart’s novel is a prime example of the cross-genre fiction which is currently sweeping the publishing industry. As audiences grow used to the conventions of thrillers, campus and mystery novels, it is authors such as Paul Hoggart, who have synthesised something wholly new out of these genres, something which really catches the imagination.
‘A most interesting book’ – Rowan Williams
Literary journalist and biographer Valerie Grove (The Times) says of the historical thriller, ‘Paul Hoggart’s debut novel is a roller-coaster ride… I absolutely loved it, and was gripped from start to finish.’ And Corinna Honan (Literary Journalist) says, ‘Da Vinci Code meets Lucky Jim.’
A Man Against a Background of Flames published by Pighog Press
Kindle ISBN (April 2013) 978-1-906309-26-8 GBP £5.99
Pbck ISBN (October 2013) 978-1-906309-36-7 GBP £9.99