by John J. Miller on May 26, 2010

in Blog Posts

  • Sumo

From a reader of The First Assassin:

Just a quick note to report that I returned from a short trip to London during which my main reading matter was your excellent “THE FIRST ASSASSIN.” And really good stuff it was–clever, excellently crafted and plotted, and altogether a ripping good wheeze. With a very near little trick ending, to boot…

Also, I was particularly pleased to see you use the word “filibuster” in its original sense–and twice even. (I’d hitherto never seen it used in English-language fiction–I only happen to be familiar with it from my boyhood reading of the Tintin adventures, in which Captain Haddock is constantly hurling the Frogue “filibustiers!” amongst his many spluttering imprecations.

Anyway, it was a great pleasure, and I look forward top the next one–sequel, perhaps?

A filibuster “in the original sense” is an adventurer who engages in a private military action in a foreign country. In the years leading up to the Civil War, several filibusters, supported by Southerners, made mischief in Latin America. Their exploits play a part in the background to The First Assassin. The most famous filibuster was William Walker. He achieved fleeting success, but things didn’t turn out so well for him, as the illustration below reveals. Hint: He’s the guy in the chair.

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