Pursuit of Princes (The Jacobite Chronicles Book 5)

By: Julia Brannan

First of all, as ever, I’d like to thank Jason Gardiner and Alyson Cairns, my soulmates and best friends, who put up with me on a day-to-day basis, and who understand my need for solitude, but are always there for me. They’ve both supported me through every stage of my writing, and, indeed, in all my other endeavours, both sensible and madcap!

Thanks to the long-suffering Mary Brady, friend and first critic, who reads the chapters as I write them, critiques them for me and reassures me that I can actually write stuff people will want to read.

Thanks also go to Mandy Condon, who sends me useful articles, has already determined the cast list for the film of my books, and who has been a wonderful and supportive friend for over twenty years. Long may that continue!

Thank you to Kym Grosso and Victoria Danann, both successful and talented authors, who have been extremely supportive and have generously given me the benefit of their invaluable advice, gained through experience. They have both saved me a lot of time, money and tears, and I value their friendship enormously.

And thanks also go to Jason and Marina for doing an excellent job of formatting my book, to the talented and very patient Najla Qamber, who does all my covers, puts up with my lack of artistic ability, and still manages to somehow understand exactly what I want my cover to look like! Thanks too to Jason Tobias the cover model for Pursuit of Princes – you make a perfect Alex!

Finally, but VERY importantly, to all my wonderful readers, who not only buy my books, but take the time and effort to give me feedback, and to review them on Amazon and Goodreads – thank you so much. You keep me going on those dark days when I’d rather do anything than stare at a blank screen for hours while my brain turns to mush…you are amazing!


Although this series starts in 1742 and deals with the Jacobite Rebellion of 1745, the events that culminated in this uprising started a long time before, in 1685, in fact. This was when King Charles II died without leaving an heir, and the throne passed to his Roman Catholic younger brother James, who then became James II of England and Wales, and VII of Scotland. His attempts to promote toleration of Roman Catholics and Presbyterians did not meet with approval from the Anglican establishment, but he was generally tolerated because he was in his fifties, and his daughters, who would succeed him, were committed Protestants. But in 1688 James’ second wife gave birth to a son, also named James, who was christened Roman Catholic. It now seemed certain that Catholics would return to the throne long-term, which was anathema to Protestants.

Consequently James’ daughter Mary and her husband William of Orange were invited to jointly rule in James’ place, and James was deposed, finally leaving for France in 1689. However, many Catholics, Episcopalians and Tory royalists still considered James to be the legitimate monarch.

The first Jacobite rebellion, led by Viscount Dundee in April 1689, routed King William’s force at the Battle of Killiecrankie, but unfortunately Dundee himself was killed, leaving the Jacobite forces leaderless, and in May 1690 they suffered a heavy defeat. King William offered all the Highland clans a pardon if they would take an oath of allegiance in front of a magistrate before 1st January 1692. Due to the weather and a general reluctance, some clans failed to make it to the places appointed for the oath to be taken, resulting in the infamous Glencoe Massacre of Clan MacDonald in February 1692. By spring all the clans had taken the oath, and it seemed that the Stuart cause was dead.

However, a series of economic and political disasters by William and his government left many people dissatisfied with his reign, and a number of these flocked to the Jacobite cause. In 1707, the Act of union   between Scotland and England, one of the intentions of which was to put an end to hopes of a Stuart restoration to the throne, was deeply unpopular with most Scots, as it delivered no benefits to the majority of the Scottish population.

Following the deaths of William and Mary, Mary’s sister Anne became Queen, dying without leaving an heir in 1714, after which George, Elector of Hanover took the throne, as George I. This raised the question of the succession again, and in 1715 a number of Scottish nobles and Tories took up arms against the Hanoverian monarch.

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