Halifax, Nova Scotia, 1941. The sudden death of seventeen-year-old Canadian Patrick MacQueen’s little sister has wrecked his idyllic world and tore his family apart. Still clinging to his boyhood ideals of honor and glory, he lies about his age to enlist and go off to war. He never could have imagined what lay ahead.
The Broken Sword opens with Patrick MacQueen fighting to keep his head above water as a fledgling signalman in the Canadian Army. An accident on the firing range dashes his hopes and he returns to the sultry shores of his Bermuda home to recover. There he falls under the spell of a seductive Nazi sympathizer, Lady Lemonton, and just as things begin to spin out of control, he gets a second chance to get back into the war. Commissioned a Royal Canadian Navy lieutenant, he plunges into vicious battles with German U-boats on the icy North Atlantic. But even as he struggles for sanity and survival, his journey takes another unexpected turn when he meets Lady Lemonton while on leave in Ireland who promises him glory and riches and herself if only he will join the enemy. Does he have the strength to resist? What will become of his boyhood ideals? And where do his loyalties really lie when he emerges as a key conspirator in an attempted coup d’etat to defend the Dominion of Newfoundland’s sovereignty from a transatlantic power play?
Inspired by the author’s own wartime experiences, The Broken Sword is a riveting coming-of-age story that offers a never before seen worm’s-eye view of the chaotic underbelly of a nation hopelessly unprepared for war and its destructive aftermath. A novel told with Norman Mailer muscle and F. Scott Fitzgerald flair, MacQueen’s arresting saga plumbs the uncharted waters of a world struggling to survive the ruthless machinations of the great powers, and lifts the veil on untold histories.
About the Author
Capt. the Chevalier Richard Mingo Sweeney of Bolger’s Park, Lt. RCN (R), Capt. CA (R), GCLJ, KMLJ, OL, was born on October 29, 1922 in Trochu, Alberta. During the Great Depression, his family moved to Bermuda. In 1939, he joined the Canadian Army and later the Royal Canadian Navy and was commissioned a Lieutenant in 1942. He served as Gunnery Officer during the Battle of the Atlantic on board the HMCS Trillium. He was then given command of the Port Security Guard in St. John’s, Newfoundland, from 1943-46. Following the war, he joined the Cadet Corps in Quebec and attained the rank of Captain. He went on to produce feature films in Canada and serve as military consultant for television and radio in New York City. Later, he moved to Pictou, Nova Scotia, and established a historical association, the St. Suibhne Trust. A writer and historian, his publications include Sween (Suibhne), Clan of the Battle Axe: A Brief History of the MacSweeney Galloglass, and Scots Empire: Beinge the Storie of the Kingdom of Scotland's Briefe Empire: the Lordship of Nova Scotia. He died on Remembrance Day, November 11, 2015.
Customer ReviewsSee All
fascinating coming-of-age WWII saga - a must
I loved this novel. The main character, Patrick MacQueen's coming-of-age story is so incredible and unlikely, it could only have been inspired by a true story. It's not just that this is a rare wartime novel from a Canadian perspective; it is definitely that. But even as I was engrossed in the violent and romantic twists and turns of Patrick's story as he tries to survive one bizarre adventure after another, I kept wanting to check my history books: how could this be based on a true story? Since the author has passed away, I guess we'll never know. Trust me, if you know anything about the war, you'll be surprised. But the rich and detailed historical setting and unforgettable characters has that ring of authenticity that makes this novel that much more fascinating. This is highly entertaining proof that the past is a "different country - they do things differently there." I grew up in Canada and read a lot about World War II, but this book took me to a world I never knew existed. Anyone who loves compelling coming-of-age stories or true-to-life wartime stories or both will love this book. It's four books in one, really a series in one volume, but well worth diving in.