The struggles of the Scottish Civil War of 1644-45 could easily be personified as a contest between James Graham, 1st Marquis of Montrose and Archibald Campbell, 8th Marquis of Argyll. Yet at first glance there seems to be more that unites them than separates them. Both came from ancient and powerful families; both were originally Covenanters; both considered themselves loyal subjects of Charles I, then Charles II, who in turn betrayed each of them, and both died at the hands of the executioner. In this book Murdo Fraser examines these two remarkable men, underlining their different personalities: Montrose, the brilliant military tactician - bold and brave but rash, and Campbell - altogether a more opaque figure, cautious, considered and difficult to read. The result is a vivid insight into two remarkable men who played a huge part in writing Scotland's history, and a fascinating portrait of a time of intense political upheaval.
Murdo Fraser was Deputy Leader of the Scottish Conservatives from 2005 until 2011 and is MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife. Born in Inverness, he studied law at Aberdeen and worked as a solicitor in Aberdeen and Edinburgh before becoming an MSP in 2001.