Apsley House

Dear Readers,

This has been a year of challenges, indeed, so I suppose we should expect the same in our fictional lives as well!
As some of you know, it’s been a bit of a rocky road to the release of The Apsley House Incident!  (or maybe I should call it the Apsley House accident?).   Due to a “technical difficulty” the content in the Kindle version was from a different book entirely.

For those of you who got the ‘misplaced’ book, I’m so sorry you had to wait to read Melanie and Malcolm’s new adventure!  I can imagine your disappointment, because my own heart dropped when I went excitedly online to see what was happening, only to find 1* reviews abounding. and a raft of confused comments on Facebook and GoodReads.

So first of all, here’s what you can do to get the correct version of The Apsley House Incident if you haven’t already been able to do do so. Amazon and NYLA say

We’ve sent an e-mail to customers who own copies of “The Apsley House Incident” to notify them of the update made to the content. Readers can now update the content on their “Manage Your Content and Devices” page (www.amazon.com/gp/digital/fiona/manage). If you own a copy of your book, you can also download the newer version from this page. 

For readers who already returned the book and got a refund, they’ll need to repurchase. But everything should be correct.

And for those of you who have the new — or new-new — book, it would be such a lovely and appreciated gesture if you could go to the Amazon listing and let readers know that the correct version is being delivered.   And of course, I always value your reviews, good or bad, so I appreciate that extra feedback if you’re willing!

You can find a direct link to “The Apsley House Intrigue on Amazon here.

Here’s to smooth sailing ahead, and warm hopes for a lovely and happy Thanksgiving for those celebrating. One of the many things I am thankful for is all the wonderful support readers give to Malcolm and Mélanie Rannoch and their friends – and to me. The last couple of days have been extremely challenging, but one silver lining was seeing how many readers were so eager to get the novella and how supportive you all were through the process.

  If you have questions or are still having any issues, please email me at tracy@tracygrant.org or leave a comment below.

With heartfelt thanks,



Happy weekend! London Gambit is now up for pre-order and has it’s own pages on this site (the trade paperback will be available about the same time as the e-book, but won’t be up for pre-order). Above is a picture of Apsley House, the Duke of Wellington London residence, that I took on a research trip a few years ago. The denouement of London Gambit takes place at a banquet at Apsley House on the anniversary of the battle of Waterloo. The timeline of the series naturally put the book in June 1818, three years after Waterloo. Perhaps because I was subconsciously aware of this, echoes of the battle reverberate through the book. I needed a major social event for the denouement of the book, and I really wanted it to revolve round the anniversary of Waterloo on 18 June. I knew from a research visit to Apsley House, that Wellington had given banquets for Waterloo veterans on the anniversary of the battle.

Apsley House  (which stands on the edge of Hyde Park at Hyde Park Corner) was designed by Robert Adam and built in the 1770s for the second Earl of Bathurst (who had been Baron Apsley before he succeeded to the earldom). Wellington’s brother Richard, Marquess Wellesley, purchased Apsley House in 1807 and engaged James Wyatt to improve it (with the assistance of Thomas Cundy). Though the grateful nation was offered to build Wellington a London home, Wellington instead bought Apsley House from his brother in 1817 (to help Richard out of financial difficulties). In 1818 Wellington engaged Benjamin Dean Wyatt, James Wyatt’s son, to make repairs to the house. Wyatt installed the nude statue of Napoleon by Antonio Canova, which Wellington had acquired, at the base of the stairs.

But Wellington was still British ambassador to France in 1818. He probably didn’t give his first banquet for Waterloo veterans at Apsley House until 1820, and the first of his banquets took place in a dining room that could only seat 35, so the guests were limited to senior officers. After the Waterloo Gallery was completed in 1830, up to 85 guests could attend, including guests who had not been present at the battle, but the guest list was limited to men. While I worked on the first draft of London Gambit, I danced round what to do with the Waterloo anniversary. In the end I decided that Wellington could have come to London for the Waterloo anniversary in 1818 even if he did not in fact do so, and that he could have held a banquet with the guest list I needed. I blogged more about this recently on History Hoydens.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend! Mélanie and I had a lot of fun seeing a local production of Kismet last night and today we went to a “Pajama jam” (pic below) to which Mélanie insisted on wearing her ballgown and didn’t mind a bit that she looked different. She is very much my daughter!