cover image The Eloquence of Blood

The Eloquence of Blood

Judith Rock. Berkley, $15 trade paper (400p) ISBN 978-0-425-24297-1

Set in Paris in 1686 during the Christmas season, Rock's second novel featuring Charles du Luc is every bit the equal of her impressive historical thriller debut, The Rhetoric of Death. When the Jesuit college of Louis le Grand, where Charles is a rhetoric teacher, comes under suspicion for having had a hand in the stabbing murder of Martine Mynette, his superior directs him to absolve the Jesuits of blame and find the real killer. Martine, an attractive young woman, was expecting to inherit the family fortune after her mother's death, despite having been adopted, and she had been frantically searching for a missing document that established her right to the legacy. Inconveniently for Charles's colleagues, the Mynette legacy was promised to the college of Louis le Grand in the event of there being no family heirs, giving the Jesuits an obvious motive to do away with Martine. Readers will hope this energetic and engrossing sequel will be the first of many. (Sept.)