Thursday, December 6 at 7 pm

speaking & signing
The Inquisition of Stephen F. Austin & The Blood Throne of Caria


The era of New Spain was over, and empresario Stephen F. Austin of San Felipe, Texas was in bitter trouble in Mexico. The centuries-old Holy Inquisition had recently ended, and Dominican priests had ceased the unsavory torture of citizens for religious crimes and the prosecuting of their own Jesuit brethren for advocating independence. Nevertheless, when Austin was arrested in 1834 on suspicion of sedition, he was jailed at the mother of Inquisition prisons in the capital city and forced to reckon with a legal system that still lay deep in its shadow. Austin's dungeon habitat faded over time from Texas memory, but a description of his primitive quarters in his own words would provide the means for the recovery of its location. The Inquisition of Stephen F. Austin revisits how details from royal treasury records, civil engineer accounts, and eyewitness journalist articles, as unlocked by clues from his prison writings, were what led ultimately to the author's rediscovery of his dungeon keep in the famed Palace of the Inquisition in 2017.


In the early fifth century BC, Artemisia is trained in medicine, the sword, and statecraft--and no one cares. Her marriage will cement an alliance for her father and make a prince heir to his throne. However, this Amazonian spitfire will not be reduced to a traded commodity. 

When the Persian Emperor demands a hostage, Artemisia's father sends his thirteen-year-old daughter in her brother's place. Instead of succumbing to loneliness, Artemisia charms the Imperial Court and converts her exile into her own private tutelage.

Three years later, she returns to Caria as the heir to her father's throne. Princes pile upon each other to marry her. Dreading a life of submission, Artemisia delays the wedding--only to discover that her suitors are willing to kill for her hand. Brutally forced into wedlock, she outmaneuvers the kings of Caria in the palace and on the field of battle, cleaving the ramparts of patriarchy to become one of history's fiercest heroines.


Bruce W. Clavey is a lifelong writer, a foreigner to Texas by birth who joined the zillion other information technologists immigrating to Austin during the boom. Now free to pursue his passion for the region's Latin roots, Clavey has made extensive exploration of historical and archaeological sites in Texas, Mexico, and Central America, and frequently conducts archival translations for colonial-era Spanish-language records.

Clavey’s professional writings reflect a blend of the same interests and disciplines. His recent living history projects include feature in-exhibit dramatizations at the Bullock Texas State History Museum: a speakeasy barkeep's saga in Maizie O's Longhorn Lounge (American Spirits), sibling fracture over the rise of Nazi totalitarianism in Stille Nacht (State of Deception), and the trials of a 1940s rodeo-turned-studio performer in Yippee Yay! (Rodeo!). In his latest non-fiction work, The Inquisition of Stephen F. Austin, Clavey revisits the trail of historic clues leading to his onsite rediscovery of the Texas empresario's dungeon cell at Mexico City's Palace of the Inquisition.


Roy Casagranda is a professor of political science in Austin, Texas, where he gives monthly public lectures on politics, philosophy, and history.

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Event date: 
Thursday, December 6, 2018 - 7:00pm
Event address: 
The Inquisition of Stephen F. Austin Cover Image
ISBN: 9781388385187
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Blurb - July 22nd, 2020

The Blood Throne of Caria Cover Image
ISBN: 9781732477506
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Sekhmet Liminal Press, LLC - September 10th, 2018

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