Shadow of Spain

Fiona Buckley. Severn, $28.99 (224p) ISBN 978-0-7278-5086-7
At the start of Buckley’s solid 20th Tudor mystery featuring occasional secret agent Ursula Blanchard (after 2021’s Forest of Secrets), Queen Elizabeth, Ursula’s half-sister, summons her to a meeting at St. James Palace in the spring of 1588. Should the Spanish follow through on their threat to invade England, Ursula will have an important—and dangerous—role to play. Meanwhile, the queen seeks an alliance with the Duke of Parma, governor of the Netherlands. When Ursula learns that her onetime ward, 20-year-old Mildred Atbrigge, has eloped with a half-Spanish double agent, Berend Gomez, to Brussels, where the duke has his palace, Ursula has an excuse to go to Brussels and do what she can to serve the queen’s interests while looking for Mildred. Does Gomez want to help the queen? And what are his true feelings for Mildred? Buckley does her usual fine job dramatizing the politics of the era, but newcomers should be prepared for relatively slow chapters devoted to the domestic activities of the series’ many secondary characters. Fans of Elizabethan historicals will be satisfied. Agent: David Grossman, David Grossman Literary (U.K.). (Jan.)
Reviewed on : 11/12/2021
Release date: 01/01/2022
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
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