A novel detailing the early years of the Flemish surgeon, explorer, astrologer, natural philosopher and proto-scientist Frans Michielszoon van Raveyck (1610-95). Born in mysterious circumstances in a small town in Flanders on Christmas Day 1610, the hero later becomes stepson to the town's surgeon and is apprenticed to him following the family's flight to England in 1622 to escape a charge of witchcraft. Forced to flee once more in 1625, to the Netherlands, following an unsuccessful operation for bladder stone on a local outlaw, Frans and his stepfather enter service aboard a Dutch warship and are involved in the disastrous Anglo-Dutch expedition to Cadiz in October 1625. Taken prisoner by the Spaniards, Frans escapes conscription into the Spanish Army only by entering service aboard a Dunkirk privateer ship, which takes him back to Flanders at the end of 1625.
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September 2010 : UK Paperback
May 2010 : USA, Canada, UK Kindle edition