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Why haven’t I read ‘Traitor to the Crown’ series yet? January 12, 2010

Posted by Diana McCabe in Authors, Book lists, Fun stuff.
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Mr. Finlay (Photo by Michelle Daniel)

Blame Twitter. It reminded me the other night that I hadn’t purchased a single book written by childhood acquaintance C.C. Finlay, author of the TRAITOR TO THE CROWN series. Now, what kind of friend does that make me? Rotten. Because as a kid, Charlie (I know,  I know, his official name is Charles Coleman) was not only willing to talk about anything and everything to anyone in the rural town of Marysville, but he was super smart. The kind of smart where he didn’t make you feel like your ideas were dorky. But I was the more mellow of the three sisters. I think he probably had more fun dealing my two testy siblings on the Marysville Debate Team. Kathy (older, bossy — but very smart — dominatrix debator) and Sandy (younger, quieter — but very smart — sarcastic-leave-me-alone-you-F’ng debator. ) Yup — nice, eh?

But, the funny thing is, his books would probably unite us all since the sisters love this kind of fantasy where magic can change history. Here’s a look at details of his series from product comments.


This spellbinding historical fantasy, first of a series, takes Proctor Brown, ready minuteman and reluctant witch, through the opening battles of the American Revolution. Caught between the demands of a loyalist girlfriend and the needs of his aged parents, Proctor is eager to join the American cause and put his hidden abilities to good use. As he learns more about witchcraft, he finds it employed by both rebels and Royal Marines, and he struggles to master his talents without being exposed. Finlay (The Prodigal Troll) provides enough well-researched minutiae of daily life in colonial America to make this a fine historical novel, while offering a magic-tinged view of the happenings at Lexington, Concord and Bunker Hill that impressively restores suspense and uncertainty to long-settled events.


After making early gains on the battlefields, General Washington’s struggling young armies are being relentlessly pressed back by British troops and Hessian mercenaries. Among the enemy’s ranks is a mysterious force from the Covenant, a secret society of evil witches that for centuries has been pulling the strings of European history: a Hessian necromancer who drinks the power of other witches like a vampire and whose allies include devils and ghosts. Now this man seeks to sap the fighting spirit of Washington’s troops by means of a pernicious curse, chaining the souls of the dead to the spirits of the living.

Against him stand Proctor Brown and Deborah Walcott, two young patriots who lead a ragtag band of witches as much in danger from their own side as from the enemy. Proctor and Deborah must find a way to break the Hessian’s curse before the newborn revolution is smothered in its cradle—and the Covenant extends its dark dominion to the shores of America, extinguishing forever the already sputtering torch of liberty.


The War of Independence appears to have no end in sight. Discouraged by the bloodshed and suffering their magic can do nothing to prevent, Proctor and his wife, Deborah, dream of starting a family. But when Deborah gives birth, a powerful demon called Balfri, summoned by the secret society of European witches known as the Covenant, tries to possess the child. Though the attack in unsuccessful, it makes Proctor and Deborah realize that there can be no safety for them, or for anyone, until the Covenant is destroyed.

With the help of such patriots as Benjamin Franklin and John Adams, Proctor embarks on a desperate journey to take the fight to the heart of the Covenant’s power: Europe. There he will uncover a dark, necromantic design of chillingly vast proportions. Meanwhile, back in America, Deborah will face Balfri again–only this time the demon will have the whole British army to command.


This series would most certainly be perfect for at least two of us (me and Sandy — cannot vouch for Kathy’s reading tastes because she was always ahead of us, reading PRIDE AND PREJUDICE and DAVID COPPERFIELD when she was in sixth grade or something weird like that. ) So the challenge for at least two of the McCabe sisters will be to purchase and read Charlie’s books this year. Anyone else read these and care to comment? Any of the many Mville fans out there read these yet! Lemme know. In the meantime, I’ve got a lot of cool reading to do!


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