Black August (Gregory Sallust, Book 10)
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First published in 1934, Black August is set in a terrifying future Europe on the verge of collapse; financial breakdown and revolution, civilian panic, street-fighting and an uncontrolled exodus from the cities to the countryside, where bands of starving people wander, pillaging for food.
Out of the terror and the bloodshed steps the former British secret agent Gregory Sallust, to take the leadership of a group of men and women seeking only to survive: to lead them through bitter hardship and terrible hazard to a rural settlement which they fortify against invasion, and which, at first, seems reasonably secure...
Many of the principal towns of England, Scotland and Wales accepted the authority of the local Soviets a short time after the dissolution of the late Government and, although the street fighting was bitter and severe, London acknowledged a provisional Communist Government five days ago.’ There you are darlings, just what Gregory told us, and what the greybeard said in the Town Hall,’ Veronica shrugged impatiently. ‘Shut up!’ snapped Kenyon, ‘oh hell! the battery’s fading out.’ The voice had
you, Kenyon?’ Hay-Symple inquired with a grin, from the door. ‘Oh—er—some flowers that I sent have come back—went to the wrong address, I think,’ he finished lamely. Veronica suddenly hooted with laughter. ‘Wrong address my foot! Just look at him, darlings—do! The poor fish has been turned down by some wench. His face is as red as his hair!’ ‘Oh, shut up!’ snapped Kenyon savagely. ‘It’s nothing of the sort.’ A general titter of amusement ran round the room, but after a moment it sank to a
she was wondering. ‘It was one thing to arrive there according to their plan of the previous evening with Ann as a willing adjunct to the party. Juliana Augusta might prove a little awkward, but Veronica had prepared a story to fit the case, and at the time she had counted on Ann’s co-operation in putting it over. Now it was a very different matter. This small, pink wildcat with the tawny eyes was apparently guaranteed to blow up on the slightest pretext. What asses they would look if Ann spilled
something exciting, extraordinary, possible and even probable. There were three key characters that Dennis created over the years: The Duc de Richleau, Gregory Sallust and Roger Brook. The first de Richleau stories were set in the years between the wars, when Dennis had started writing. Many of the Sallust stories were written in the early days of the Second World War, shortly before Dennis joined the Joint Planning Staff in Whitehall, and Brook was cast in the time of the French Revolution, a
for a thousand pounds I won’t; and I couldn’t if I would for that matter. I’d hoped to get the gas for the car, but there wasn’t any so it died on me back on Sutton Common, and I had to walk the last five miles home.’ Gregory smiled. ‘There must be hundreds of thousands of cars abandoned by the roadside by now. What a chance for the car bandits, eh?’ ‘Ah! if they had the gas,’ laughed Mr. Andrews, ‘but a thousand atmospheres would be worth more than a Rolls today. Come on now, sir, here’s