G.P.R. James was a historian and novelist, who took well-documented historical events and characters and wove stories around minor or imaginary actors in the events. In this work, set in seventeenth century France, we follow the adventures of young Louis, heir to the Count of Bigorre, after an encounter with the vindictive Marquis de Saint Brie forces him into exile. The tale wends its way inexorably towards the Battle of Marfee in the 30 years War and the death of the Count of Soissons in a failed coup against the much hated minister, Cardinal de Richelieu. Young love, a brush with the law, card sharks, a deadly avalanche-- life is definitely interesting for the young adventurer.