The Travellers – A series of historical fantasy

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The Travellers is a tale of adventure, friendship, and courage set against the backdrop of time travel.

This series explores the idea that there really is a curse related to our modern world that has put most of us to sleep. A sleep so deep, that only acts of great courage and love can awaken us. We will see that this awakening is only the start. For the forces that cursed us with the sleep, fear those that are awake and seek to destroy them.

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In Book 1, young Sasha, the son of a prominent Russian oligarch, is to spend his summer vacation at his mother’s castle, a proposition the Russian boy is not looking forward to. Yet his fears of spending a long, boring summer alone with his security detail and the castle staff are quickly snuffed out when his parents are murdered.

Sasha’s world is turned upside down and the summer holidays soon become a life and death adventure filled with surprises, new friends with impressive talents and old enemies that seemingly can’t be defeated. The only way forward for Sasha and his terrifying new friend is in the distant past, where they must hide from their formidable foes.

Book 1 was published in early October 2018. You can buy the book on all of the Amazon national sites. Here is the link to Amazon.com – 

Here is the link to Amazon.ca

Here is the link to Amazon.co.uk

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In this, the second book of The Travellers, we follow Sasha and Aurora back in time to Britain just before the Roman invasion in 43 AD. Meanwhile, in modern times, Milla confronts her destroyer and her greatest fears. Mikhail and Elspeth have to escape to a hideaway.

Will be available on Amazon in late November, 2018.

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In Book 3, after many trials, the conflict, in Britannia, between Sasha and Artaos is eventually resolved and Vespasian “wins” the war for the Emperor. The first step of the prophesy that he will become Emperor has been taken.

We find Milla and Georgi in the Kingdom of Jerusalem in about 1120. In this time, Georgi is Gondomer, a Spanish Knight. Gondomer is an historical person who was one of the 9 founders of the Templars. To allow herself to be with Georgi, Milla is pretending to be his male squire, Ludo. They have escaped the clutches of Fr Huw Payne in modern times, but, his old persona, Hugues des Payens, is in these times, and is the Grand Master of the Templars. With all Hugues des Payens’ powers, Milla and Georgi will have to be very careful. Shortly after they arrive, King Baldwin II is kidnapped and is imprisoned far away in Armenia. His kidnapping and the daring rescue attempt are a central part of Book 3. These extraordinary events are based loosely on what actually happened.

In the present time, Carmen Francis, “Termie”, is on a mission to penetrate the Master’s organization. As a test, the Master sends her on a dangerous mission that will ultimately take her to Jerusalem. Fortunately she has a new ally.

In Book 3, the last book in Series I, Jerusalem is an important new location where most of the separated characters will eventually converge both in time and place in future books in the series.

In all, I plan a total of nine books. Rooted in historical truth, they explore a magic that may not be purely fantasy. At the heart of the books is the question, has civilization, as we know it dulled powers that humans still latently have that only need to be awakened? They also explore a culture that is deeply personal that we have also lost. They ask the second question can we recreate a personal culture where what we do defines us, where our word is our bond and where friendship and honour are at the core of all we do?

The Challenge will be available in late December, 2018.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Noblesse Oblige

2016 Noblesse Oblige Book Cover - Robert Paterson -FINAL 4 copy 2“Noblesse Oblige” is an intimate history of the families of Montreal’s once famous community of wealth and privilege, the “Square Mile”. Using their own words and images, the book seeks to answer the question of why they lost their power and influence so quickly after the Great War.

Free PDF download at this link

We first meet our central characters in the summer of 1914. The great days of entrepreneurial adventure in Canada are over. A new generation of young men are taking over the reigns of leadership from their hard-driving new-immigrant fathers. They have inherited their fathers’ businesses and grand mansions. They have installed their wives as chatelaines. It’s a brilliant social life but, underneath the glamour, many of these men and the women want more meaning. Some, at the very top, had tried rebellion. But the powerful forces of conformity squeezed them back into the norms of Edwardian upper middle class life.

This deep sense of pre-war ennui explains the feelings of exultation that the declaration of war brings. The young men sign up. Their women immediately book passage to Europe. 30,000 women, the same number as their menfolk, cross the Atlantic that fall. Their principal concern is not risk or death but that they might miss the adventure. None feel this concern more keenly than the rebels.

By mid May, 1915, everything changes.

At Ypres, on April 21- 23, 1915, the men face their first true test. Knowing nothing of soldiering, facing gas for the first time, the Canadians stand and die. Duty and honour demand this. The First Division, suffering a 40% casualty rate, sets the standard for how all the men of the Square Mile are to behave for the rest of the conflict. On May 7th, the Lusitania is sunk. Many of its victims are women and children of the Square Mile. In a tribal society, there is no greater crime. On May 8th, the men of the PPCLI are effectively wiped out. Only 153 officers and men are left out of the 1,000 that had sailed from Canada. Honour now demands that the men and the women of the Square Mile commit to “Total War”.

In the knowledge that their future was certain death, the younger brothers of the First Contingent continue to sign up for service. Many of their fathers join up. Badly wounded men return again and again to the front. Men, in safe staff jobs, return to their old units to die with their men. Like grim-faced Spartan matrons, the women of the Square Mile send their men off to die with honour. Chatelaines become CEO’s of war service organizations. Mothers return to work the day after they hear of their child’s death. Sisters of the dead drive ambulances at the front. Young women work themselves to death. Like the lairds of old, the men and the women of the Square Mile bring their servants to war. Master and servant give their lives for each other.

Love replaces adventure as the primary motivation. This love is not a romantic love. Nor can it be explained as friendship. It is the same primeval love that drives a mother to die for her child. The Greeks called this love ‘Philia’. It is this love that, in the face of death, can make a man feel overwhelmingly alive. This love is why some men discover that they love war itself, it’s addictive. Philia also sustains the women. As mothers lose their own children, they expand their concept of family, and so their hearts, to include all the children of the tribe.

Ultimately, at the front and at home, the heart can only take so much. The exceptionally close ties of the Square Mile mean that every individual family loss is felt as everyone’s loss. There is no limit to the pain. The few who survive the conflict lose most of their friends and they lose most of their family. They freeze inside and dare not love again.

By 1919, the finite capacity of love met the infinite capacity of industrial war to inflict pain. Other elites lost many sons. Other elites lost much of their wealth. The Square Mile’s tight social structure, and its implacable honour code, meant that it had also lost its spirit. Only ghosts remained.

Principal Characters – Linked by Blood, Friendship and by Sacrifice

At the core of Montreal society are the Allans of Ravenscrag, Sir Montagu and Marguerite, Lady Allan. Their youngest daughters, Gwen and Anna, are killed on May 7, 1915. when the Lusitania is sunk. Marguerite survives the sinking and goes on to finance and to run a large hospital in England. Montagu sets up the pension scheme that becomes Veterans Affairs. Their only son, Hugh Allan, is killed on his first mission with the RNAS on July 7, 1917. Their eldest daughter, Martha Allan, dies, aged 47, in 1942 of pneumonia that she first contracted in 1916 while nursing her father’s best friend, Henry Yates. Henry Yates, 2nd in command of The McGill Hospital, dies in January, 1916. His wife, Alice Yates, comes to England and works with Marguerite Allan and Julia Drummond. In 1918, Martha Allan and Emily Yates join their mothers as nurses.

Dr. John McCrae, friend of Lady Allan and veteran of the Boer War, signs up in September 1914, as second in command of a battery. He writes In Flanders Fields after the death of a friend at the second battle of Ypres in 1915. He is transferred to the Medical Corps where he works at the McGill Hospital. Weakened by PTSD and overwork, he dies from pneumonia in January 1918.

Guy Drummond, Julia, Lady Drummond’s only son, is killed April 22, 1915 at Ypres. Trum Warren, his best friend is killed the day before. They are married to two sisters. Dorothy Braithwaite, their younger sister, is drowned on May 7 as she travels with Lady Allan to comfort them. Going back to work the day after receiving the news of Guy’s death, Julia Drummond organizes The Information Service and the Maple Leaf Clubs, organizations that look after the personal needs of all Canadian soldiers at war in Europe.

Hamilton Gault, personally finances the establishment of the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry. In the fall of 1914, he travels to Europe with the regiment and with his wife, Marguerite Stephens Gault. Her mother, Frances Stephens, travelling with Lady Allan, dies on the Lusitania with Marguerite Stephens Gault’s 18 month old nephew, baby John Stephens. Chattan Stephens, the father of baby John, broken-hearted and weakened by trench fever, dies in the flu epidemic in 1918. Lonely and afraid, Marguerite Stephens Gault betrays Hamilton Gault with a fellow officer. Their divorce is the scandal of the time.

Hartland Paterson, double first cousin of the Allans, loses a leg in 1918. His older brother Alex Paterson serves at the front from February 1915 until September 1918, when he is badly gassed. He is involved in every action of the CEF and is awarded the DSO and a bar. Suffering from PTSD, he kills himself in 1956.

George Slingsby, a valet, is a protege of Lady Allan. As the Lusitania sinks, George, who cannot swim, gives his life jacket to his friend, Lady Allan. Ray Appleton, Gault’s peacetime butler and wartime batman, carries badly wounded Gault for three miles back from the front and so saves Gault’s life. Herbert Cruikshank, McCrae’s batman and William Dodge, his replacement, defend McRae’s beloved horse, Bonfire, from his enemy, General Guy Carleton Jones. Caroline Milne, nurse, dies with her charge, baby John Stephens

McGill University sends the largest Canadian hospital of the war to France and provides the PPLCI, via Percival Molson, with their replacements. The Bank of Montreal in London serves all Canadian officers in Europe. 50% of BMO’s staff enlisted.

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Lessons from Vimy

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Just over a 100 years ago, generals were faced with the same kind of problem that modern leaders have today. They had been shaped by an era that made them ill equipped to understand and apply the new technology of their time. But, on Easter morning in 1917, an army made up of amateurs, who were not bound by the old ideas, won the battle of Vimy Ridge and showed how the new technology could be used.

This short book is the story of what the Canadians did to solve this problem.

The lessons that they learned apply to all who wish to lead our organizations into the network age.

The book is a practical manual for cultural change paid for in blood and so has great rigour. It is also a human story about an English aristocrat, a real estate salesman and a university professor who together changed the way of war and set in motion a process that lead to peace.

You can buy the book here on Amazon

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General Sir Arthur Currie’s After Action Report after Vimy Ridge

 

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“The great lesson to be learned from these operations is this: if the lessons of the War have been thoroughly mastered; if the artillery preparations and support is good; if our intelligence is properly appreciated; then there is no position that cannot be wrested from the enemy by well-disciplined and well-lead troops attacking on a sound plan.” Arthur Currie

In April 1917, the Canadian Corps, under General Julian Byng, demonstrated, for the first time in the Great War, that a strongly held position could be taken. His chief planner and successor was General Arthur Currie. Currie went on to become the go to general and the CEF, the go to unit, for when a great assault was required.

In this short booklet, you will find General Arthur Currie’s report on the attack of the First Canadian Division on Vimy Ridge in April and May of 1917.

Until now, this document has only been available in the archives in the UK and in Canada. The intent at the Brome County Historical Society (BCHS), is to make this document widely available to all.

The importance of this document is that it shows, for the first time, the new thinking that ultimately enabled the British Army to find the answers to the stalemate of the Western Front.

This document is laconically titled: 1st Canadian Division – Report on the Vimy Ridge – Willerval – Arleux and Fresnoy Operations – April 9th – May 5th 1917. Dated June 1917. It was written as a tutorial for officers. It is part of the new culture of the Canadian Corps to share hard won lessons immediately.

In this booklet you will find the full text transcribed for easy reading. We have also added a running commentary and end notes that include more detail.

This copy of the document comes from the papers of Canadian Brigadier General Dennis Draper. At the time of Vimy, Draper was the CO of the 5th Mounted Rifles. Recruited in the Eastern Townships in Quebec, the home of the Brome County Historical Society, the 5th CMR served in the 3rd Division at Vimy. After the Great War, Draper donated his military papers to the BCHS.

My work here was to add the commentary to Currie’s document.

You can download the pdf for free here

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Your Freedom – The Power of the Network

Are you free?

Or are you bound by chains that you don’t see? These chains might be how you rely on your job to provide an income. They might be how you rely on medicine to keep you well. They might be how you rely on your bank for the credit that keeps you going.

Relying on your employer, your doctor and your banker can constrain every part of your life. They can control your time, where you live, how you live and what you fear. You may know this. But what you may not know is that you can work constructively to break free from their grip on you. You can control how you make a living. You can control how you access credit and you can control most of the factors that make you healthy.

Based on my own experience of taking back control in these important areas, I have written three short books to help you take control of your life and so become free.

I start with the “Job”. “You Don’t Need a Job”Link to Store – If we can see the Job for what it is, a construct of a paradigm, then we are no longer trapped. For how we make our living is the starting place for the journey.

The second book in the series is called “You Don’t Need a Banker” Link to Store – More than any institution today, Banks seem supreme and essential. But I will show you that to get the credit you need to make a living and to have a good life does not mean that you have to depend on banks as we know them today.

The third book is all about health.

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You Don’t Need Medicine to Get Healthy –Link to store . What if our health did not depend on doctors and drugs? This book will explore the new science of Ancestral Health and show you how to take charge of your own health and well being.

When you are no longer reliant on these modern institutions, you can have more control in your life. You can be free. Free in a world where most still are slaves.

You can indeed change the world by changing your own self first.

We have done this before as this short video will illustrate.

All the best to you

Rob

 

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