God's Secret Agents: Queen Elizabeth's Forbidden Priests and the Hatching of the Gunpower Plot (Paperback)

God's Secret Agents: Queen Elizabeth's Forbidden Priests and the Hatching of the Gunpower Plot By Alice Hogge Cover Image
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One evening in 1588, just weeks after the defeat of the Spanish Armada, two young men landed in secret on a beach in Norfolk, England. They were Jesuit priests, Englishmen, and their aim was to achieve by force of argument what the Armada had failed to do by force of arms: return England to the Catholic Church.

Eighteen years later their mission would be shattered by the actions of the Gunpowder Plotters -- a small group of terrorists who famously tried to destroy the Houses of Parliament -- for the Jesuits were accused of having designed "that most horrid and hellish conspiracy."

Alice Hogge follows "God's secret agents" from their schooling on the Continent, through their perilous return journeys and lonely lives in hiding, to, ultimately, the gallows. She offers a remarkable true account of faith, duty, intolerance, and martyrdom -- the unforgettable story of men who would die for a cause undone by men who would kill for it.

About the Author

Alice Hogge was educated at the University of St. Andrews, Scotland. She lives in London. This is her first book.

Praise For…

“Hogge’s absorbing narrative of the experience of [Catholic] underground life reads like a historical novel.” — The Guardian

“Hogge deftly narrates the seething world of religious conflict in late sixteenth- and early seventeenth-century England.” — Publishers Weekly

“An illuminating look at an often overlooked period of church-state turmoil . . . Draws surprising parallels with events today.” — National Catholic Reporter

“An exciting account of the Catholic resistance in England under Elizabeth.” — New Statesman

“Compelling storytelling.” — The Observer

“Alice Hogge’s vivid narrative culminates in a gripping account of the [Gunpowder] Plot and its disastrous denouement.” — Eamon Duffy, New York Review of Books

“A well-researched, skillfully crafted book that evokes the physical as well as the intellectual world of Renaissance English Catholicism.” — Weekly Standard

“A tense, taut, real-life political thriller.” — Booklist

“[A] vivid and moving portrait of the Counterreformation in the Elizabethan age.” — The Spectator

“Paints a vivid picture of the stresses of operating in secret, under false identities, in constant fear of betrayal.” — London Times

“The final chapters make moving, even tragic reading.” — Evening Standard

“Excellently researched and beautifully written.” — Financial Times

Product Details
ISBN: 9780060542283
ISBN-10: 0060542284
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Publication Date: June 13th, 2006
Pages: 488
Language: English