The Spirit Of The Age is a satirical metaphysical literary contemporary fantasy mystery.
Non-halal and non-kosher sacred cow slaughter is the order of the day as Probationary Police Constable Skandi Khan, transplanted from
famously decaying multi-cultural Hounslow, cuts a swathe through rural Dorset, grappling with a crime wave whilst struggling to get her
arranged marriage back on track.
It’s idyllic rural touristy Jurassic Dorset as you have never seen her before. Monumental statues disappear, and bodies turn up in the ocean.
There’s murder, mystery, mermaids, music, Muslims, marriages, mages, mayhem and mirth, all served up with lashings of sex and cricket.
Praise from readers:
★★★★★ – “One of the most unique novels I’ve read in years. Hugely
imaginative, very entertaining, and has plenty of humor to boot.”
★★★★★ – A beautifully crafted tale that forces the reader to face the
stark realities of country life in modern Britain one minute, then
suspend belief in reality the next. Thoroughly enjoyable reading.”
The Spirit of the Age Excerpt
“You know, you’ve never written a single poem for me. I’ve obviously
been too easy!”
“A sin of omission soon remedied. Watch and be amazed!” James focused
intently on his laptop screen, and typed rapidly.
The sun bursts through the gloomy banks of cloud
And all is bathed in glorious golden light,
The sky a canvas framed by trees whose might
Is dwarfed by shafts of sunshine now allowed
To tear fierce rents in the purple shroud.
The sunbeams bear angels they burn so bright
Though no prophets wait for them to alight
By quiet waters whose reflections crowd
The rippling river, its ducks and moored boats
Scarcely moving. The church appears to mourn
The short grass carpet munched by cows ignoring
The walkers amongst them, bare-armed without coats
Who stand admiring an image of dawn
Though suffused with the colours of evening.
Your peasant hovel stands where once the monks
Set off across the causeway to the church,
Plainsong inspiring floods that can’t besmirch
Their feet, because the ditches and the chunks
Of stone stand proud, now screened by gnarled trunks
Of trees, whose leaves and branches give a perch
To silent birds, above us as we lurch
From embrace to warm embrace, like chipmunks
Snuggling up against autumnal chills such
Are finally banished in your kitchen.
I traced your hourglass form. What folly this,
I see your face transfigured by my touch
A blazing fire flared up to enrich
My heart; yet still I left your lingering kiss.
“There you are; not one but two poems in your honour!” He beamed at her.
Sireen examined them suspiciously. “Do they rhyme and scan?”
“Oh yes”, said James, feigning a confidence that he did not feel.
“They are Petrarchian Sonnets. Ten syllables per line De-Dah De-Dah
De-Dah De-Dah De-Dah, rhyming scheme ABBAABBACDECDE. And to paraphrase
Dorothy Parker, ‘If you say my verse don’t scan, then I get me another
woman’. And if you doubt that I wrote them, see if you can find them
on the Internet”
Sireen entered a couple of searches, and they turned up blank. So she
had a closer look at the verses themselves. Certainly, she doubted
that Byron or Shelley would have rhymed ‘trunks’ with ‘chipmunks’. And
Fondlesham Abbey was just up the road, which would explain the
reference to monks. But there were definitely no cows in the
churchyard, and no rippling rivers anywhere hereabouts; she’d have
found them on her bicycle rides. Realisation dawned, and she picked up
a cushion, and whacked him.
“Ouch, gerrorff!” said James, shielding his face with his forearms.
“You wrote these for somebody else!” she accused, and whacked him again.
David Melville Edwards Author Bio
David Melville Edwards boasts a Cabinet Minister for a cousin, and as a sister-in-law he has a woman who used to entertain Princess Margaret when she sloped off for discreet weekends with Roddy Llewellyn, so only the REALLY posh wouldn’t consider him posh, but as the grandson of a miner at University he realised that he wasn’t. Whilst by some accounts he wasted three years wasted, he had at least the wit to recognise that there were Old Etonians more ready to overlook his comparatively humble background than he was their lives of privilege.
After University, a Management Training Course beckoned. At one place he was accused of being a Trotskyite infiltrator, whilst he turned down the opportunity to participate in the collapse of the British car industry after being told his job would consist of ‘Taking a document from A, making notes and passing it on to C. Actually, the document could probably go straight from A to C, but you’ve got to start somewhere’. Finally offered gainful employment by someone who talked sense, he learned how to stand with a clipboard and stopwatch whilst watching other people working, and to bore for England on the subject of corrugated fibreboard containers (sorry, cardboard boxes).
But now the boot was on the other foot. In a satanic mill at England’s periphery David Melville Edwards was the posh interloper. One evening he was called in to see the Shift Manager, who brandished a page excised from a glossy magazine showing a woman having sex with a dog. It had been pinned up inside the locker of the girlfriend of a fellow caver, a woman who had hated him on sight, consumed by a rage so visceral she could scarcely say a civil word in response to simple work-related questions. On finding the picture, she had marched off to Management and accused David Melville Edwards of putting it there. When asked how the locker could have been opened (the clue is in the name) the Shift Manager responded ‘But aarrhh, you visit London at weekends’. However, there were good times, and he tried his hand at writing poetry.
Told by his erst-while cloth-cap boss there was no future for him motivating cloth-caps, he left cardboard box manufacturing for computing, and found his metier. He looks relatively impressive amidst scenes of chaos, so he’s spent most of the intervening decades being parachuted in to small-scale Information Technology disasters round the world. Thirty thousand re-deployed employees about not to be paid at the end of the month? The Christmas peak, and only 24 hours in every day? Robots running amok in a robot warehouse? The office of the future staying there? Banking systems taking tea-breaks? Prison systems, council systems, housing systems, probation systems, police systems, accounting systems? All on his C.V., all great fun in hindsight, and sometimes at the time. Going in to work at weekends wearing a Batman T-shirt, and feeling like a super-hero …
He learned to write writing software.You’re taught to break things down into manageable pieces, but at the heart of every computer system there is always something large and over-arching that you have to keep sight of; the reason why it was decided to automate it in the first place. So likewise novels. Chapter by chapter within the the overall structure of the plot.
After three score years, the world has changed out of all recognition. Yet the UK’s rulers are still a patrician clique harbouring delusions of grandeur. It’s a funny old world, changing yet changeless, and David Melville Edwards hopes to long continue having fun fantasizing about it.