The Merchant's Mark

Pat McIntosh, Author
Pat McIntosh, Author . Carroll & Graf $25 (302p) ISBN 978-0-7867-1741-5
Reviewed on: 05/15/2006
Release date: 06/01/2006

In McIntosh's gripping third 15th-century historical featuring Scotsman Gil Cunningham (after 2005's The Nicholas Feast ), the young lawyer-to-be finds himself in the middle of a murder inquiry when a Glasgow merchant friend, Augie Morison, discovers a severed head in a barrel that should have contained books. When Morison is accused of the murder, the amateur sleuth, aided by his future father-in-law, Master Pierre, seeks to identify the victim, as well as the source of the valuable jewels that were also concealed in the barrel. The pair cross paths with a variety of Scottish nobles, even as a bloodthirsty hit man known simply as the Axeman piles up an impressive body count that silences a number of potential witnesses. While the prime mover behind the crimes will be obvious to many, McIntosh's characterizations and period detail are first-rate and bode well for future entries in this series. (July)

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