BOOK ONE OF THE DEVICES
The Pendragon Protocol by Philip Purser-Hallard
The Circle are the modern-day successors of the Knights of the Round Table. Armed with the latest military hardware and operating from a hidden fortress on the South Bank of the Thames, they protect 21st-century Britain from certain very specific threats – criminals who, like the Circle’s own Knights, have characters from Arthurian legend living inside their heads.
Jory Taylor, the Knight bearing the device of Sir Gawain, has grappled on the Circle’s behalf with mercenaries, serial killers and far-right terrorist cells. However, when he is captured by Gawain’s traditional enemy the Green Knight, he discovers a new side to the myths he lives by – one which, as he learns more about this clandestine world, becomes both threateningly personal and terrifyingly political.
The legends of King Arthur are not the only stories with influence on the British psyche – and some of the others have their own, very different agendas.
‘Philip Purser-Hallard is the best kept secret in British genre writing… It obviously helps that the basis for the book, and the series to follow (‘The Devices Trilogy’), is that rarest of fantasy beasts – an original idea… crisp and clever, the plotting devoid of flab and the cast of characters appealing, interesting and consistent… The Pendragon Protocol feels like a fitting updating of The Once and Future King. I can’t think of any higher praise for this novel.’
‘Purser-Hallard takes urban fantasy back from fey vampires and rugged werewolves and puts it firmly back where it belongs, rooted deep in the myths and legends of old Britain. He combines a startlingly original premise with some bloody good story-telling. I’m in for the long run, and you should be too.’
Simon Morden (Philip K Dick Award winner, the Samuil Petrovich trilogy)
‘A violently erudite genre mash-up by a very clever man indeed.’
Paul Magrs (Never the Bride, Enter Wildthyme)
‘Philip Purser-Hallard is a master craftsman. His stories are both cleverly constructed and wrought in the sharpest prose, and he’s always a joy to read. Not to be missed.’
George Mann (The Newbury and Hobbes series)