For the twentieth anniversary of the start of the Matthew Bartholomew series, Sphere is delighted to reissue all of the medieval monk's cases with beautiful new series-style covers.
The winter of 1353 has been appallingly wet, there is a fever outbreak amongst the poorer townspeople and the country is not yet fully recovered from the aftermath of the plague. The increasing reputation and wealth of the Cambridge colleges are causing dangerous tensions between the town, Church and University.
Matthew Bartholomew is called to look into the deaths of three members of the University of who died from drinking poisoned wine, and soon he stumbles upon criminal activities that implicate his relatives, friends and colleagues - so he must solve the case before matters in the town get out of hand...
As Christmas of 1354 approaches, the town is gripped by the worst blizzards in living memory. As physician of Michaelhouse, Matthew Bartholomew struggles to help the poorer citizens cope with freezing temperatures while his colleagues prepare for the festivities.
The weather has trapped many travellers in the town, including Matthew's erstwhile love, Philippa. She and her wealthy husband, Walter, are invited to Michaelhouse for the main feast, and Matthew hopes their stay will be brief - but a man found dead in a nearby church turns out to be Walter's servant. And then events conspire to ensure that Walter will never leave Cambridge again...