The Secret of Abdul El Yezdi by the Philip K Dick award-winning author Mark Hodder is published by Del Rey later this month (£16.99).
“Having successfully discovered the source of the Nile, Captain Richard Francis Burton returns to London expecting to marry his fiancé, Isabel Arundell, and be awarded the consulship of Damascus. However, when he's unexpectedly knighted by King George V, his plans go awry. The monarch requires an agent to investigate a sequence of disappearances, and Burton, whether he likes it or not, is the man for the job.
Engineering and medical luminaries – such as Isambard Kingdom Brunel and Florence Nightingale - are among the missing, but the most significant absence is that of Abdu El Yezdi, an inhabitant of the Afterlife who, in the two decades since the assassination of Queen Victoria, has been Prime Minister Disraeli's most trusted advisor.
The search for the missing ghost soon becomes the least of the explorer's concerns, for it quickly becomes apparent that he himself is at the centre of increasingly bizarre and interconnected events, and that someone – or something – is intent not only on meddling with history, but also on harming the people Burton values the most.”