Even death cannot stop her...
Paul Doherty relates the Man of Law's tale in A Tapestry of Murders - a tale of mystery and murder as he goes on pilgrimage from London to Canterbury. Perfect for fans of Ellis Peters and Susanna Gregory.
Chaucer's pilgrims, quarrelling amongst themselves, are now in open countryside enjoying the fresh spring weather as they progress slowly towards Canterbury. A motley collection of travellers, they each have their dark secrets, hidden passions and complex lives. As they shelter in a tavern from a sudden April shower they choose the Man of Law to narrate the next tale of fear and sinister dealings.
In August 1358, the Dowager Queen Isabella, mother of King Edward III, the 'She Wolf of France', who betrayed and destroyed her husband because of her adulterous infatuation for Roger Mortimer, lies dying of the pestilence in the sombre fortress of Castle Rising, where her 'loving' son has kept her incarcerated. According to the Man of Law, Isabella dies and her body is taken along the Mile End Road and laid to rest in Greyfriars next to the mangled remains of her lover, who has paid dearly for his presumption in loving a queen. Nevertheless, as in life so in death Isabella causes intrigue, violence and murder. Nicholas Chirke, an honest young lawyer, is brought in to investigate the strange events following her death - and quickly finds himself at his wits' end trying to resolve the mysteries before a great scandal unfolds.
What readers are saying about Canterbury Tales Mysteries:
'Doherty does it again. Another gripping yarn in the Canterbury series. Each in the series has its own twists'
'You can almostfeel yourself there'
Swift, intriguing and sometimes bleakly comic, this "dark tale of blood and passion" is told by one of Chaucer's pilgrims, the Man of Law. As he regales his fellow travelers with the horrendous events of 1358, the well-defined pilgrims offer surprising revelations of their own. The lawyer tells of Vallence, a French courtier favored by England's dying dowager queen Isabella, who was fatally stabbed while trying to flee the country. After the respected judge investigating the killing is in turn foully murdered, the Sheriff of London calls upon his kinsman Nicholas Chirke, a struggling young lawyer, to discover what the secret was that Vallence was trying to convey to France. The story takes off with lightning speed. As Nicholas and his enigmatic assistant, Scathelocke, begin to pry, an appalling number of corpses fall in their wake and a lovely murderess is seen busily dispatching underworld denizens as well as respected citizens. The atmosphere is wonderfully thick, as medieval London is revealed in all its foulness--its fetid air, greasy fog and a populace of rogues and vagabonds. Despite Doherty's tipping his plot hand too early, this second in the Canterbury mystery series (after An Ancient Evil) remains an absorbing, richly detailed story of malevolent men--and women--in devious pursuits.