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The King's Puzzle, Book 1

It is 9:00 p.m. at Carley, Ontario, on May 22, 1939.

Thousands of people perch on a slope beside the Canadian Pacific line, waiting. Flames of bonfires lick the heavens and illuminate the tracks. This farming village is destined to be the most important place in the British Empire for eight minutes.

In the railway station, a telegraph key announces the approach of a train—that carrying His Majesty King George VI and Queen Elizabeth.

A whistle echoes through the hills. Bystanders cheer. Youngsters wave Union Jacks. A headlight glistens along the rails. War veterans snap to attention. A steam locomotive, adorned with shields and crowns, rounds the bend. As the train slows to a stop in the firelight, scarlet-coated Mounties emerge from vestibule doors. Their Majesties emerge onto the observation platform of the rear car. Cheers and cries of God Save the King! ring out.

Surveying the crowd, The King calls out for Duncan Wolfe. The ten-year-old boy had created a puzzle for His Majesty to solve while touring Canada and promised to meet him.

But a terrified Duncan is bolting away from the train, ignoring the cries of his parents and friends. And, for the remainder of his life, he will keep running from whatever provoked his flight.

Some seven decades later, sixteen-year-old Angus Wolfe is poking around Carley. The railway station is gone. A forest covers the hillside along the tracks. Among charred remnants of the bonfires, Angus seeks an explanation for his grandfather’s behaviour on that long-ago night of May 22, 1939.

Someone else, a blonde politician who turns heads at every public appearance, wants the mystery of The King’s Puzzle solved. She’ll even pay Angus to do so. Why?

It turns out Duncan Wolfe was entwined with Canada’s most famous missing persons case.

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