Historical Characters

Historical characters from England’s rich
history that are featured in

Tony Thistlewood’s
British novels.


Interested in historical characters in British History? Then use this page to find the links to notes on some of the fascinating historical characters that strutted the stage of 16th century England and now feature fictitiously in the historical novel When the Time is Ripe or have a bearing on the plot of the contemporary mystery Stealing Tomorrow’s Thunder – two of Tony Thistlewood’s British novels.

William Cecil, Lord Burghley

Lord Burghley features prominently, albeit fictitiously, in When the Time is Ripe, which includes many interesting historical characters. We first meet him early in the book, when he visits an old friend who is on his deathbed. Yet this man is more than a friend; he is the guardian of a secret so incredible that, if it is uncovered, it might cost Queen Elizabeth her throne, even her life.

Click on Lord Burghley, one of the principal historical characters of the sixteenth century, to find his picture and read a snapshot bio of his life, career and houses.

Sir Francis Walsingham

Sir Francis Walsingham also features prominently in When the Time is Ripe. Walsingham fears for the Queen's safety when Lord Burghley employs a young orphan of unknown parentage to be his assistant secretary. Walsingham, of course, loves a mystery and immediately orders his spies to find out everything they can about this upstart orphan.

Click on Sir Francis Walsingham to see his picture and read a snapshot bio of his life.

Queen Elizabeth I

Queen Elizabeth makes an appearance in When the Time is Ripe. The strain of endless Catholic plots against her; the problem of her cousin, Mary Queen of Scots; and the threat of a pending invasion by Spain, are taking their toll. And then Caistor Parsons arrives at her Court...

Click on Queen Elizabeth I to see her picture and read more notes and a snapshot bio of her fascinating life.

Robert Dudley, 1st Earl of Leicester

Robert Dudley features briefly in Tony Thistlewood’s novel, When the Time is Ripe. It would be difficult to write anything about Queen Elizabeth without mentioning her "Sweet Robin".

Click on Robert Dudley to see his handsome face and read a snapshot bio of his life.

Philip Howard, 20th Earl of Arundel – canonised in 1970.

Philip Howard, 20th Earl of Arundel, also makes an appearance in the novel When the Time is Ripe. We meet him in Beauchamp Tower where he spent the last ten years of his life.

Click on Philip Howard to see his picture and read a snapshot bio of his life.

Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury.

Robert Cecil makes frequent, if somewhat ghostly, appearances in Tony Thistlewood’s contemporary mystery Stealing Tomorrow’s Thunder. But why does Robert Cecil discuss Shakespeare, particularly Hamlet, with Rosalind Parsons? And what is it that provokes his lordship’s appearances – a dream, a hypnotic trance – or perhaps there is a valid reason, more mysterious yet more earthly, behind the Earl of Salisbury’s baffling visitations.

Click on Robert Cecil to see his picture (doesn’t it hide his hunch back and twisted spine well?) and read a snapshot bio of his life.

William Shakespeare.

Although William Shakespeare does not feature as an individual in Tony Thistlewood’s contemporary mystery, Stealing Tomorrow’s Thunder, the fascinating question of the true authorship of the works usually attributed to him is raised in the book. And why not, after all, the central character, Rosalind Parsons, is an expert on the subject, while Professor Howard Colebrook thinks he is an expert.

Click on William Shakespeare to see the ridiculous picture, allegedly of the Bard, that appeared on the cover of the First Folio, and read an open letter to Mr Shakespeare.

John Donne - Poet, Priest and Lawyer.

Corrupted extracts from John Donne’s poems add to the intrigue of Tony Thistlewood’s contemporary mystery Stealing Tomorrow’s Thunder – apologies, Mr Donne, for the use and abuse of your wonderful words!

Click on John Donne to see a picture of him and read a snapshot bio of his life.

Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford

You can be sure that someone will put forward Edward de Vere's name as a likely candidate whenever the question of the authorship of Shakespeare’s plays is raised. Edward is mentioned in this context in Tony Thistlewood’s contemporary mystery novel, Stealing Tomorrow’s Thunder.

Click on Edward de Vere, 17th Earl of Oxford to see a picture of him and read a snapshot bio of his life.

Saint Edmund Campion, Jesuit Priest

The martyr and Roman Catholic Saint, Edmund Campion, touched and inspired many during his lifetime and has continued to do so over the four hundred years since his execution. The impact that this amazing man had on one individual in particular is demonstrated in Tony Thistlewood’s historical novel When the Time is Ripe. He is also quoted in surprising circumstances in the contemporary mystery Stealing Tomorrow's Thunder.

Click on Saint Edmund Campion to see a picture of him and read more about his life.

Mary, Queen of Scots

Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots, is another sixteenth century historical character who features briefly in Tony Thistlewood’s novel When the Time is Ripe. In the novel, she is being led to her trial in Fotheringhay Castle when our hero, Caistor Parsons, bumps into her – well, almost – actually, he was pushed!

Click on Mary, Queen of Scots to see pictures of her and her murder and read a snapshot bio of her life.

Queen Elizabeth assembled her most senior nobles to sit in judgment of her cousin. The full list of Commissioners was a veritable who's-who of the Elizabethan court.

Henry Hastings, 3rd Earl of Huntingdon

Henry Hastings, the 3rd Earl of Huntingdon, makes a cameo appearance in Tony Thistlewood’s novel, When the Time is Ripe. We meet the Earl when the Queen’s chief minister, Lord Burghley, is interrogating him about his family. Surprisingly, Burghley seems more interested in a portrait of Henry’s wife than in his illustrious ancestors. Even so, it is an uncomfortable interview.

Click on Henry Hastings to read a snapshot bio of his life.


Click on a novel title below to go to its plot outline:

Caistor Parsons - The Gingerbread Man

Stealing Tomorrow's Thunder

Consequences!

You can find where to buy any of these books at Buying Books Online





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Reviewers' and Readers'
Comments on
Tony Thistlewood's books....


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Reviewed by Romuald Dzemo for Readers' Favorite (5 stars)

"...a work of great talent and imagination..." 
Read Romuald's full review here

"...a dense, absorbing tale...bursting with subplots and theories..." - Kirkus Reviews


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 ...a tale full of twists and turns that will leave the reader surprised...(Christine Nguyen for Readers' Favorites)


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Non fiction: the Kings & Queens of England and how they got there. 

Reviewed by Melissa Tanaka for Readers' Favorite (5 stars)

"...a wonderful primer...incredibly well organized and well written...
"...comfortable and interesting read for all ages…”

Read Melissa's full review here


Caistor Parsons  The Gingerbread Man

...a brilliantly written, edited and formatted work… Wow! Recommended for all lovers of historical fiction...
(Reviewed by Alice D. for Readers' Favorites)

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Stealing Tomorrow's Thunder

(Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorites)

…an immensely entertaining and enlightening mystery story… the real deal… Fans of literary mysteries will enjoy the fruits of Thistlewood's research into Shakespeare…

Click here to see the full review.

… descriptive writing was amazingly good… I enjoyed it immensely – DGM, Cardiff, UK

… I can't put it down… will need to take it to the hairdresser with me. – JM, NSW, Australia


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