Wednesday 6 March 2024

The Colossus by Simon Wright BLOG TOUR #TheColossus @ScarfBooks @RandomTTours #BookExtract


1630, Constantinople

A brilliant young thief, Emir, stows away on the Colossus, a ship with a murderous, mutinous crew, who covet a powerful relic on board. Sucked into a treasonous plot, Emir must foil the mutiny and save the precious cargo, before a fellow crewman seals his fate.

2012, London

Professor Daniel Fairlight isn’t alone in his search for a lost legendary artefact. An elite Ottoman military unit is tracking him. In too deep to turn back now, Daniel rushes to retrieve the relic and escape with his life.

Duman Osman, a brutal and ruthless zealot, will stop at nothing to control the secret and fulfil his destiny.

Separated by nearly four hundred years, Daniel and Emir are both running out of time to save the relic from falling into the wrong hands.

A fateful voyage of friendship and sacrifice, treachery and redemption, aboard a ship full of secrets ... The Colossus.

The Colossus by Simon Wright was published on 29 February 2024 and is Book One in the Red Scarf series.
As part of this #RandomThingsTours Blog Tour, I am delighted to share an extract from the book with you today. 

Extract from The Colossus by Simon Wright 


September 7, 1566


It had been a long, brutal month. The longest of his forty-six-year reign. And it would also be his last.

Suleiman the Magnificent knew he was now close to death. Illness had ravaged him in recent years, but this hadn’t kept him from the field. Now, lying on a grand bed in his battle tent, he reflected on his reign. He had much to be proud of. He had conquered lands from Hungary to Persia, from Portugal to Somalia. He counted over twenty-five million people under his rule. And here he was, back in Hungary once again. Had it all been worth it, or was it just a never-ending cycle of lands gained and souls lost?

He listened to raindrops tapping on the tent canvas. A cool breeze blew through the opening, briefly teasing his long white beard, even as life crept from his body. His tall, muscular stature had been eroded by his slow sickness. His gentle hazel eyes had lost their light. All that he had been was leaving him now.

‘Where is my grand vizier?’ Suleiman wheezed to his servant kneeling nearby.

‘He is still at the front, Your Imperial Majesty.’

Sokollu Mehmed Pasha had taken much of the burden of leadership off the shoulders of his sultan in recent weeks. They were camped at Szigetvár, no more than ten miles from the southern Hungarian border. In the last days of this siege against the stronghold, the vizier had taken to sleeping in the trenches with his men. Such was his drive to conclude this battle and get his sultan back into the recuperating arms of Constantinople.

This was an unusual approach for any officer, let alone a grand vizier, but Mehmed was a warrior at heart. His had not been the political upbringing of so many of his predecessors. He had been pressed into military service as a young boy called Sokollu, through the devşirme system of child slavery. There he became a Janissary, part of a small elite force who moulded their conscripts into ruthless fighting machines. He was renamed Mehmed, and it wasn’t long before he started moving through the ranks. In many ways, he was still at his most comfortable leading men into battle.

That very night he had put an audacious new plan in place. If it worked, it would bring this bloody battle to a rapid and timely conclusion. Both sides had seen many men fall. Far too many. It was time to finish this.

Simon Wright was born, raised and continues to live in and around the Home Counties of
London, England. 

He has forged a career as a leadership and brand consultant, advising and coaching business leaders internationally. 

When challenged on his credentials as a writer he cites a school commendation for creative writing and winning the Jane Austen award for achievements in English at his sixth form college. 

He acknowledges that other writers have more prestigious credentials. 

Simon’s first book, The Colossus, is volume one of a series and was inspired by a Guardian article concerning a real life shipwreck salvage operation. 

As a middle aged, middle class, white male living in southern England Simon feels uniquely qualified to take us on a century spanning Ottoman high seas adventure. 

He suggests that, through meticulous collaboration, he has managed to create a highly readable book, but also admits that the Oxford comma continues to keep him awake at night.

X @ScarfBooks

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