Day of the Assassins by Johnny O'Brien
  

Day of the Assassins

Written by Johnny O'Brien

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The Lovereading4Kids comment

A thrilling war-time adventure that is a perfect mix of historical fact and fictional adventure, in which two boys are swept back in time and thrown into the real event of the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo in 1914, the catalyst for the start of the First World War. It takes all their courage to face the incredible danger and their daring exploits bring history vividly to life. This debut novelist has created a real page-turner and once read no one can say history is dull. It’s published in hardback but the cover, complete with bullet holes, make it worth the purchase for the packaging alone!

Day of the Assassins is the first in a series of Jack Christie Adventures. The second one, which is due in 2010 will be set in Elizabethan England and the time of the Armada when Jack and Angus will don doublet and hose to save the world for a second time.

A message from the author:

'A few years ago my dad showed me some of my grandad's war medals had received during the First World War. He explained that my grand father had been injured in the war and lost part of his leg. Apparently my grandfather was reluctant to speak about how he got the injuries or how he won the medals. I don't really know why. But I know what he did was brave -because I have a citation at home signed by the Minister of War - Winston Churchill. Anyway, unlike millions of others, my grandfather survived the war and went on to have children and live to a ripe old age - although I never knew him. It got me thinking though. He made important choices in his life - he chose to fight in the wr. It seems he chose to do something brave. later he chose to have a family. If he had made different choices, of course, I might not be here.'

You could also check out www.dayoftheassassins.com

Synopsis

Day of the Assassins by Johnny O'Brien

Day of the Assassins by Johnny O’Brien is a fast-paced time travel adventure set within an accurate historical context. It takes fifteen year-old Jack Christie and his friend Angus to the period just before the outbreak of the First World War. Following a desperate chase across Europe the adventure climaxes in Sarajevo, on the day of the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand. Here, Jack must make an agonising choice with momentous implications for himself, his family and for humanity.

See below for a special video made by the publisher.

About the Author

Johnny O'Brien

"Hi - my name is Johnny O'Brien. I grew up in the Borders in Scotland. I write mostly at the weekend - during the week I have a 'proper' job in an office where I work for a range of sinister global corporations. These days I live in the south of England and have four sheep and a springer spaniel with floppy ears. I am also married and have three kids - they all have normal ears!"

Johnny O’Brien was inspired to write the novel after seeing some of his grandad’s war medals in an old cupboard. “A few years ago my dad showed me some medals that his dad (my grandfather) had received during the First World War. He explained that my grandfather had been injured in the war and had later lost part of his leg. Apparently, my grandfather was reluctant to speak about how he got the injuries or how he won the medals. I don’t really know why. But I know what he did was brave – because I have a citation at home signed by the ‘Minister of War’ - Winston Churchill. Anyway, unlike millions of others, my grandfather survived the war and went on to have children and live to a ripe old age – although I never knew him. It got me thinking though. He made important choices in his life – he chose to fight in the war. It seems he chose to do something brave. Later he chose to have a family. If he had made different choices, of course, I might not be here.”

Q and A with Johnny O’Brien

Where did the idea for Day of the Assassins come from?
My wife, Sally, said that as I was always telling the kids stories I should write a book for kids. I told her the idea was ridiculous. Then, sometime later, I was looking through a cupboard at my Dad's house. We came across some of his old medals and things from when he was an officer in the Irish Guards in the First World War. There was an old trench telescope, a citation signed by Winston Churchill and even a bit of bone that he'd kept when he'd had his leg amputated after he was injured in 1918! That got me thinking...

How does it feel to have your first book published?

Well, I did history at university so that helped and the kids have been going through the GCSE curriculum - so I've been learning all sorts of new bits and pieces. Other than that it's mostly reading or the internet. It's surprising the range you have to cover - everything from where the guns are

The list is endless and there are lots of things that I'd like to have seen: in British history - the Battle of Britain, the Armada, Waterloo... probably nothing much original there... but there are also some questions it would be good to find out the answer to: who killed the Princes in the tower? (Or JFK for that matter) or further back how did Neanderthals co-exist with Homo Sapiens... in terms of people, well of course there are usual suspects – from Churchill to Cleopatra – but the person I would really like to meet is my Grand Dad – as I was too young to know him – and I would like to know about his experiences in the war and how he was injured. I have never managed to find out.

Back to the Future – if only to see a DeLorean go at 88 MPH – although I understand in the later films they replaced the engine with a Porsche engine to give the car the requisite zip!

Tardis. Enterprise has just too much tight nylon in a confined space – got to be a fire hazard.

Oh Dear. Ant and Bee; Richard Scarry's 'Busy Busy World'; Herge (the Tintin Books) endlessly, Goscinny and Underzo (the Asterix books) endlessly. And that was about it.

Simon Schama's a History of Britain - it's very long – and it might sink in second time round.

Captain Haddock - lots of scope for misbehaviour, but a heart of gold. Great house too, lots of strange friends and a cellar full of treasure. What more could you want?

I have an office at home - so usually it’s there at the weekend if I get a chance. Usually the dog comes and snoozes at my feet. I've never understood a dog can sleep so much during the day... and then all night as well!

A time travel adventure set in a (reasonably!) accurate historical context. The idea was that if you read it, you'd have fun - and you might even learn something by mistake in the process. Sorry that's two sentences - three in fact.

They're donning doublet and hose and heading back to the sixteenth century. Why? To save the world of course... But I've ditched the idea of writing it in iambic pentameters...

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Book Info

Format

Hardback
224 pages
Interest Age: 8-12 years

Author

Johnny O'Brien
More books by Johnny O'Brien

Author's Website

www.dayoftheassassins.com/

Publisher

Templar Publishing

Publication date

1st June 2009

ISBN

9781840116731

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