At the start of Royal’s outstanding 11th medieval whodunit featuring Prioress Eleanor and Brother Thomas (after 2013’s Covenant with Hell), the imperious Fr. Etienne Davoir arrives from France to inspect the operations of Eleanor’s Tyndal Priory, of the Order of Fontevraud, in East Anglia. While such inspections are routine for other orders, this will be Tyndal’s first in Eleanor’s eight years as prioress. Abbess Isabeau, Davoir’s sister, has sent a message from France saying her brother “would look into whether any impropriety had occurred amongst the religious.” The night before the priest’s arrival, a soldier escorting his party has his throat slit while sleeping in an inn. Another murder follows, and suspicions center on a member of Tyndal Priory, even as Eleanor must fend off an accusation of a carnal affair. Royal amplifies and deepens her series characters in the service of a clever plot that elevates her work to the top rank of historical mystery writers. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 12/22/2014 Release date: 02/01/2015 Genre: Fiction
During the Covid-19 crisis, Publishers Weekly is providing free digital access to our magazine, archive, and website. To receive the access to the latest issue delivered to your inbox free each week, enter your email below.