In London's smoky taverns, a conspiracy is brewing: a group of wealthy young Catholic dissidents plot to assassinate Elizabeth, free Mary Queen of Scots - and open England to Spanish invasion. But the conspirators have been infiltrated by Sir Francis Walsingham's top intelligencer, John Shakespeare. Shakespeare, however, is torn: the woman he loves stands accused of murder. In a desperate race against time he must save her from the noose and the realm from treachery. And then it dawns that both investigations are inextricably linked - by corruption very close to the seat of power...
This is a medieval mystery featuring sleuthing monk Brother Athelstan May, 1381. The Great Revolt draws ever nearer. The Upright Men openly roam the streets of London, waiting for the violence to begin. Their mysterious envoy, the Herald of Hell, appears at night all over the city, striking terror into the hearts of those who oppose them. But who is he? When his chancery clerk is found hanged in a notorious Southwark brothel, the ruthless Thibault, John of Gaunt's Master of Secrets, summons Brother Athelstan to investigate. Did Amaury Whitfield really kill himself following a visit from the terrifying Herald of Hell? Athelstan is unconvinced. In the dead man's possession was a manuscript containing a great secret which he had been striving to decipher. If he could only unlock the cipher and interpret the messages being carried to the so-called Herald of Hell, Athelstan would be one step closer to catching the killer. But can he crack the code before the Great Revolt begins?
October, 1799. A century is coming to an end, but river policeman Tom Pascoe's work is never done. A new case in London's Docks holds danger not just for Tom but for the nation.
Sailing master Robert Cox cannot pay his gambling debts. But he has information about a ship which has arrived in British waters carrying a precious cargo. Selling that information to one of London's most feared men might be Robert Cox's salvation - or his damnation.
Elsewhere in the warren of streets and waterways, Tom and his assistant Sam Hart are tipped off about a robbery. Their inquiries take them to London's secretive Jewish community, where a dealer admits to being told that a quantity of silk is about to come on the market.
When Robert Cox goes missing and powerful men from London's underworld and beyond begin to hunt for the silk, Tom finds himself investigating not just a crime but a conspiracy that will threaten his life, his family and his country.
Sherlock Holmes is dead. Days after Holmes and his arch-enemy Moriarty fall to their doom at the Reichenbach Falls, Pinkerton agent Frederick Chase arrives from New York. The death of Moriarty has created a poisonous vacuum which has been swiftly filled by a fiendish new criminal mastermind. Ably assisted by Inspector Athelney Jones, a devoted student of Holmes's methods of investigation and deduction, Chase must hunt down this shadowy figure, a man much feared but seldom seen, a man determined to engulf London in a tide of murder and menace. The game is afoot...
Vincent is an apprentice librarian who stumbles upon a secret powerful enough to destroy his master. With the foolish arrogance of youth, he attempts blackmail but the attempt fails and Vincent finds himself on the run and in possession of an intricately carved silver raven's head. Any attempt to sell the head fails... until Vincent tries to palm it off on the intimidating Lord Sylvain - unbeknown to Vincent, a powerful Alchemist with an all-consuming quest. Once more Vincent's life is in danger because Sylvain and his neighbours, the menacing White Canons, consider him a predestined sacrifice in their shocking experiment. Chilling and with compelling hints of the supernatural, The Raven's Head is a triumph for Karen Maitland, Queen of the Dark Ages.
One night, in a corridor of the Royal Naval Hospital, Greenwich, nurse Hester Monk is approached by a terrified girl. She's from a hidden ward of children, all subject to frequent blood-letting, and her brother is dying. While William Monk's River Police fight to keep London safe from gun-runners, Hester takes on a new role at the hospital, helping to administer a secretive new treatment. But she slowly realises that this experimental cure is putting the lives of the children at risk. Attempting to protect the young victims, she comes under threat from one rich, powerful, and very ill man who is desperate to survive...
King Henry VIII is slowly, painfully dying. His Protestant and Catholic councillors are engaged in a final and decisive power struggle; whoever wins will control the government of Henry's successor, eight-year-old Prince Edward. As heretics are hunted across London, and the radical Protestant Anne Askew is burned at the stake, the Catholic party focus their attack on Henry's sixth wife, Matthew Shardlake's old mentor, Queen Catherine Parr.
Shardlake, still haunted by events aboard the warship Mary Rose the year before, is working on the Cotterstoke Will case, a savage dispute between rival siblings. Then, unexpectedly, he is summoned to Whitehall Palace and asked for help by his old patron, the now beleaguered and desperate Queen. For Catherine Parr has a secret. She has written a confessional book, Lamentation of a Sinner, so radically Protestant that if it came to the King's attention it could bring both her and her sympathizers crashing down.
But, although the book was kept secret and hidden inside a locked chest in the Queen's private chamber, it has - inexplicably - vanished. Only one page has been found, clutched in the hand of a murdered London printer. Shardlake's investigations take him on a trail that begins among the backstreet printshops of London but leads him and Jack Barak into the dark and labyrinthine world of the politics of the royal court; a world he had sworn never to enter again. Loyalty to the Queen will drive him into a swirl of intrigue inside Whitehall Palace, where Catholic enemies and Protestant friends can be equally dangerous, and the political opportunists, who will follow the wind wherever it blows, more dangerous than either.
The theft of Queen Catherine's book proves to be connected to the terrible death of Anne Askew, while his involvement with the Cotterstoke litigants threatens to bring Shardlake himself to the stake. The previous books in the bestselling Shardlake series are Dissolution, Dark Fire, Sovereign, Revelation and Heartstone.
The medicus Ruso and his wife, Tilla, are back in the borderlands of Britannia, where he is tending the builders of Hadrian's Great Wall. Having been forced to move off their land, the Britons are distinctly on edge and are still smarting from the failure of a recent rebellion that claimed many lives. The tension grows when Ruso's recently arrived clerk goes missing and things go from bad to worse when the young son of a local family also vanishes. While struggling to keep the peace between the Britons and the Romans, Ruso and Tilla uncover an intricate deception involving slavery and fur trappers, and it becomes imperative that they solve the mystery of the two disappearances before it's too late.
It's London in 1876, and the whole city is abuzz with the enigmatic disappearance of a famous foreign pianist. Lenox has an eye on the matter - as a partner in a now-thriving detective agency, he's a natural choice to investigate. Just when he's tempted to turn his focus to it entirely, however, his grieving brother asks him to come down to Sussex, and Lenox leaves the metropolis behind for the quieter country life of his boyhood. Or so he thinks. In fact, something strange is afoot in Markethouse: small thefts, books, blankets, animals, and more alarmingly a break-in at the house of a local insurance agent. As he and his brother to investigate this small accumulation of mysteries, Lenox realizes that something very strange and serious indeed may be happening, more than just local mischief. Soon, he's racing to solve two cases at once, one in London and one in the country, before either turns deadly. Blending Charles Finch's trademark wit, elegance, and depth of research, this new mystery, equal parts Jane Austen and Charles Dickens, may be the finest in the series.
The Body Snatchers Affair: The latest in the Carpenter and Quincannon historical mystery series set in 1890's San Francisco from Marcia Muller and Bill Pronzini. Two missing bodies and two separate investigations take Carpenter and Quincannon from the heights above San Francisco Bay to the depths of Chinatown's opium dens. For John Quincannon, this is a first: searching a Chinatown opium den for his client's husband, missing in the middle of a brewing tong war set to ignite over the stolen corpse of Bing Ah Kee.Meanwhile, his partner, Sabina Carpenter, unsure of the dark secrets her suitor might be concealing, searches for the corpse of a millionaire, stolen from a sealed family crypt and currently being held for ransom. With the threat of a tong war hanging over the city (a war perhaps being spurred on by corrupt officials), Carpenter and Quincannon have no time to lose in solving their cases. Is there a connection between the two body snatchers? Or is simple greed the answer to this one?And why is the enigmatic Englishman who calls himself Sherlock Holmes watching so carefully from the shadows?
December, 1866. Charles Latterly, Hester Monk's brother, travels to Italy to spend Christmas on the volcanic island of Stromboli. In his secluded mountain hotel a curious group of people has gathered, and Charles senses a brittle strain between some of his fellow guests as they visit the crater of the island's famous rumbling volcano.
While the guests prepare for Christmas, the volcano threatens to erupt, and they realise they must leave at once. As they plan their escape, with Charles thrust reluctantly into leading the group to shelter, one of their number is found dead. But if this is murder, there is a killer in their midst, and Charles must navigate a path to safety...
A Christmas Escape is the intriguing and dramatic new festive tale from the pen of Anne Perry, the master of Victorian crime.
Pearl Nolan always wanted to be a detective but life, and a teenage pregnancy, got in the way of a police career and instead she built up a successful seafood restaurant in her coastal home town of Whitstable - famous for its native oysters. Now, at 39, and with son Charlie away at university, Pearl finds herself suffering from empty nest syndrome... until she discovers the drowned body of local oyster fisherman Vinnie Rowe, weighted down with an anchor chain, on the eve of Whitstable's annual oyster festival. Is it a tragic accident, suicide - or murder? Pearl seizes the opportunity to prove her detection skills and discover the truth but she soon finds herself in conflict with Canterbury city police detective, Chief Inspector Mike McGuire. Then another body is discovered - and Pearl finds herself trawling the past for clues, triggering memories of another emotional summer more than twenty years ago...