Mercia’s Take

Daniel Wiles

‘A brilliant debut’ Guardian

1870s, the Black Country.

Michael is a miner. But it’s no life for a man.

Michael exhausts himself working two jobs, to send his son Luke to school, so he won’t have to be a miner too.

Down the pit one day, he finds a seam of gold. If he gets it out, he can save his own life, and Luke’s.

But his workmate has other ideas…

Mercia’s Take summons an England in the heat of the industrial revolution, and the lives it took to make it. Gripping, powerful and intense, it is the debut of an astonishing new talent.


ISBN: 9781800750692

Published: February 3, 2022


ISBN: 9781800750845

Published: October 6, 2022


ISBN: 9781800750708

Published: February 3, 2022


Reviews for Mercia’s Take

The Times best historical fiction books of 2022 so far

‘Read this novel and marvel at its language, dark and gleaming as obsidian. Daniel Wiles channels the Southern Gothic into the vernacular of the Black Country and unearths from the past a tale of desperation that speaks to our current damnation. A striking debut‘ – Paul Lynch

Energy and passion fuels this harsh and beautiful first novel; Daniel Wiles connects us viscerally to the past we have buried the history we choose to ignore‘ – Hilary Mantel


Daniel Wiles

Daniel Wiles is from Walsall in the West Midlands. He recently completed the Prose MA at UEA, where he was the recipient of the Booker Prize Foundation Scholarship. Mercia’s Take is his first novel.