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"Silken" Thomas Fitzgerald: Henry VIII's Irish Thorn is in the tradition of the epic novel. The period is the 1530s. The young Irish lord "Silken" Thomas Fitzgerald has challenged the cruel religious policies of Henry VIII by renouncing his sword of state. Henry counters by sending an army to Ireland. The novel begins with Thomas's trek, precipitated by the fall of his family's castle, to an ally's stronghold in the west of Ireland. Once there, he and his wife, Frances, struggle to rekindle the revolt's waning popularity. Their efforts fail, and Frances goes to England, where she appeals to her cousin Ann Boleyn to intercede on Thomas's behalf with her husband, Henry VIII. Thomas, after surrendering on terms later treacherously rescinded by Henry, returns to England, where he is imprisoned in the Tower. The novel concludes by describing the events that occur when the desperate efforts of Frances, and a priest friend, fail to obtain amnesty for Thomas. Gardiner Noble is a retired electrical engineer who spent forty years in the automobile industry. He is the inventor of the coil-on-plug ignition system, which is used in most cars manufactured around the world. He has written several books: One, "Silken" Thomas Fitzgerald: Henry the Eighth's Irish Thorn, Beliefs, and The Gleeful Banker. He is in the process of writing a serious book that explains why the human body ages
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