The first three Shardlake mysteries have won over critics and readers alike. In Revelation, Sansom's newest book in the series, the year is 1543 and King Henry VIII is wooing Lady Catherine Parr, a woman sympathetic to reform, whom he wants for his sixth wife-- much to the dismay of Archbishop Cranmer and the embattled Protestant faction at court. Meanwhile, Matthew Shardlake is working to defend a teenage boy, a religious fanatic who is being held in the infamous Bedlam hospital for the insane. When an old friend of Shardlake's is murdered, he vows to bring the killer to justice. His search leads him back to Bedlam but also to Catherine Parr--and the dark prophecies of the Book of Revelation. As Bishop Bonner prepares to purge London of Protestants, Shardlake, with his assistant Jack Barak, uncovers a series of horrific murders that shake them all to the core. Revelation--the strongest novel in the series to date--is sure to delight Sansom's many fans and bring him to a wider audience.
In March 1543, while London buzzes about Henry VIII's campaign to win newly widowed Lady Catherine Parr for his sixth wife, hunchbacked barrister Matthew Shardlake has grimmer matters on his mind in Sansom's gripping fourth Tudor historical (after 2007's Sovereign). Not only has his close friend and colleague Roger Elliard been savagely murdered but Shardlake finds himself assigned the incendiary case of a young religious fanatic committed to Bedlam. Learning of a link between Elliard's death and a previous slaying, one touching Lady Catherine's household, he reluctantly agrees to join the top-secret probe by his mentor, Archbishop Cranmer-instantly plunging both himself and his intrepid assistant, Jack Barak, into a maelstrom of political intrigue, spiritual strife and personal peril. With its wealth of period detail, compelling characters and bold, fast-moving plot, this may be the most rousing Shardlake adventure so far. (Feb.)
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February 04, 2009
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