author: Alan Bray
One violent act draws together three very different people in Alan Bray’s haunting debut The Hour of Parade. The year is 1806, and Russian cavalry officer Alexi Ruzhensky travels to Munich to kill the man responsible for murdering his brother in a duel, French officer Louis Valsin. Obsessed by the main character in Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s novel Julie, Alexi delays his search and becomes romantically entangled with a young Bavarian woman. When he finally meets Valsin and his mistress Anne-Marie, Alexi hides his true identity and befriends them. As the three grow closer, tensions mount as Alexi and Anne-Marie desperately try to resist their growing attraction. But in the novel’s explosive conclusion, Alexi will learn that revenge cannot be forgotten so easily.