Monday 5 December 2022

Cue for Treason - Geoffrey Trease

Cue for Treason
ISBN 9780141359434
eISBN 9780141327266

When I read this book it in 2022 it will have been at least the third time I have read it. I read it I believe first in 1983/84 in grade 8, I read it again a year or 2 later in Grade 9 or 10. But what stands out for me is it is the first book I can remember reading myself. I have mentioned in a few reviews and several times on my blog that I have a dual form of dyslexia. I failed grade 1 and was tested and they did not find it. I was really struggling in grade 2 and was diagnosed with a dual form of dyslexia, but they kept passing me on. So my parents sent me to a private summer school between grade 7 and grade 8, I went from reading at a grade 3 level to a university level and over 400 words per minute with comprehension. I stumbled across this book while searching for something to read with my son. I could immediately picture the Orange and black cover. And the world that opened up when I read that first book myself.

Even with the passing of over 25 years I remembered much of the broad strokes of the story. And to be honest rereading it brought back that sense of awe and accomplishment of reading a book on my own. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, even reading it again with that gap, and with all the stories I have read in between. This novel and A Separate Peace by John Knowles are the first books I recall reading and both have stuck with me. This one for the adventure of the story and the freedom of reading myself, and the other for a different reason but I plan on rereading it soon.

Two different descriptions of this novel are:

“Fleeing from the evil Sir Philip Morton, Peter Brownrigg finds himself on the wrong side of the law. On the run to London he meets Kit and the two decide to stick together. But a chance discovery endangers their lives and soon Peter is deep in murderous plots, secrets and even treason.

Set in the turbulent days of Elizabeth I, this classic story of danger and intrigue conjures up a world of mystery, twists and turns and thrilling action.”


“Cue for Treason (1940) is a children's historical novel written by Geoffrey Trease, and is his best-known work. The novel is set in Elizabethan England at the end of the 16th century. Two young runaways become boy actors, at first on the road and later in London, where they are befriended by William Shakespeare. They become aware of a plot against Queen Elizabeth's life and attempt to prevent it.”

I picked this up for nostalgic reasons, to share it with my son, and because of it’s place as the first story I read. It was just as good a story as I recalled. The story is action packed. It is an interesting blend of adventure, and historical fiction. I loved the appearance and presentation of Shakespeare. And The fact that the first plan we encounter is Richard III one of my favourites is an added bonus.

The book enthralled me as a youth and has stayed with me for nearly 4 decades. As an adult it was just as entertaining a read. An excellent volume I can easily recommend.

Books by Geoffrey Trease:
Junior novels:
Bows Against the Barons (1934)
Comrades for the Charter (1934)
The New House at Hardale (1934)
Call to Arms (1935)
Missing from Home (1937)
Mystery on the Moors (1937)
The Christmas Holiday Mystery (1937)
Detectives of the Dales ( (1938)
In the Land of the Mogul  (1938)
Running Deer  (1941)
Grey Adventurer  (1942)
Black Night, Red Morning  (1944)
Trumpets in the West (1947)
Silver Guard  (1948)
The Hills of Varna (1948)
No Boats on Bannermere (1949)
The Secret Fiord (1950)
Sir Walter Raleigh: Captain and Adventurer (1950)
Under Black Banner (1951) 
The Crown of Violet 
     US title: Web of Traitors (1952)
Black Banner Players (1952) 
The Barons' Hostage (1952)
The Silken Secret (1953)
The Island of the Gods (1954)
Black Banner Abroad (1954) 
Word to Caesar  
     US title: Message to Hadrian (1955)
The School Beyond the Snows (1955)
The Gates of Bannerdale (1956) 
Mist over Athelney  
     US title: Escape to King Alfred (1958)
Thunder of Valmy ) 
     US title: Victory at Valmy (1960)
The House of Blue Dragons (1960)
The Maythorn Story (1960)
Change at Maythorn (1962)
Follow my Black Plume (1963)
A Thousand for Sicily (1964)
The Red Towers of Granad (1966)
The White Nights of St Petersburg (1967)
Horsemen on the Hills (1971)
Popinjay Stairs (1972)
The Iron Tsar (1975)
Violet for Bonaparte (1976)
The Seas of Morning (1976)
The Field of the Forty Footstep (1977)
Mandeville (1980)
Saraband for Shadows (1982)
The Cormorant Venture (1984)
Tomorrow is a Stranger (1987)
The Arpino Assignment (1988)
Shadow Under the Sea (1990)
Calabrian Quest (1990)
Song for a Tattered Flag (1992)
Fire on the Wind (1993)
Bring Out the Banners (1994)
No Horn at Midnight (1995)
Curse on the Sea (1996)
Cloak for a Spy (1997)
Danger in the Wings (1997)

For younger readers:
The Fair Flower of Danger (1955)
The Dutch are Coming (1965)
Bent is the Bow (Nelson) (1965)
The Runaway Serf (1968)
A Masque for the Queen (1970)
A Ship to Rome (1972)
A Voice in the Night (1973)
The Chocolate Boy (1975)
When the Drums Beat (1976)
The Spycatchers (1976)
The Claws of the Eagle (1977)
The Running of the Deer (1982)
A Flight of Angels (1989)
Aunt Augusta's Elephant (1991)
Henry, King to Be (1995)
Page to Queen Jane (1996)
Elizabeth, Princess in Peril (1997)
Mission to Marathon (1997)

Other children's books:
Red Comet: A Tale of Travel in the USSR (1937)
Fortune, My Foe: The Story of Sir Walter Raleigh (1949)
The Mystery of Moorside Farm - also contains The Secret of Sharn and In the Blood  (1949)
The Young Traveller in India and Pakistan (1949)
Enjoying Books (1951)
The Young Traveller in England and Wales (1953)
Seven Queens of England (1953)
Seven Kings of England (1955)
The Young Traveller in Greece (1956)
Edward Elgar, Maker of Music (1960)
The Young Writer (1961)
Wolfgang Mozart : The Young Composer (1961)
Seven Stages (1964)
This is Your Century (1965)
Seven Sovereign Queens (1968)
Byron, A Poet Dangerous to Know (1969)
D. H. Lawrence, The Phoenix and the Flame (1973)
Days to Remember, A Garland of Historic Anniversaries Short Stories (1973)
Britain Yesterda (1975)
A Wood by Moonlight and other Stories (1981)
Timechanges: The Evolution of Everyday Life (1985)
Looking through History: The Edwardian Era (1986)
Hidden Treasure (1989)

Adult writing:
Such Divinity (1939)
Only Natural (1940)
Snared Nightingale (1957)
So Wild the Heart (1959)

A Whiff of Burnt Boats (1971)
Laughter at the Door (1974)
Farewell the Hills (1998)

Other adult works:
The Supreme Prize Poems (c1926)
The Unsleeping Sword (1934)
Walking in England (1935)
North Sea Spy (1939)
Clem Voroshilov: The Red Marshall (1940)
Army without Banners (1945)
Tales Out of School (1948)
The Italian Story: From the Earliest Times to 1946 (1963)
The Grand Tour (1967)
Matthew Todd's Journal (Editor) (1968)
Nottingham: A Biography (1970)
The Condottieri: Soldiers of Fortune (1971)
Samuel Pepys and his World (1972)
London: A Concise History (1975)
Portrait of a Cavalier Biography (1979)

Published plays:
After the Tempest (1938)
The Dragon Who Was Different and Other Plays for Children (1938)
The Shadow of Spain and Other Plays (1953)

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