SAINTLY MURDERS by C. L. Grace
A MEDIEVAL MYSTERY FEATURING KATHRYN SWINBROOKE
St. Martin's Minotaur, August 2001
When a monk is found dead with the mark of the stigmata upon him, he is immediately proposed for sainthood. Physician Kathryn Swinbrooke is called on to serve as Devil's Advocate--the examiner charged with uncovering any evidence that sainthood may be inappropriate. As she investigates, she learns that the old monk might have been a saint, but that something more pragmatic and evil lies at the root of his death.
Set in Canterbury, England during the reign of Edward IV (of York, during the War of the Roses), SAINTLY MURDERS combines historical adventure and intrigue with a closed room mystery. England still reels from the damage done by years of war between York and Lancaster, and between England and France. The French King will do whatever he can to keep England weak and unstable, even if this involves murder, especially if this involves learning the secret of the royal family. Who better to tell these secrets than the Queen Mother's own confessor?
Author C. L. Grace (see more BooksForABuck.com reviews of mysteries by Grace) has done a wonderful job describing medieval England, the distrust that still lingers after decades of unrest and civil war, and also the physician's role and science of that time. Multiple strands of mystery weave through the story, with only Kathryn and her love Colum able to fainty discern the patterns. Somewhere high in the councils of England is a traitor and both Kathryn and England are in danger until the traitor is uncovered.
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