Blood of the South: An Aelf Fen Mystery

Alys Clare. Severn, $28.95 (240p) ISBN 978-0-7278-8432-9
At the start of Clare’s impeccably paced sixth Aelf Fen novel (after 2013’s Land of the Silver Dragon), apprentice healer Lassair helps rescue a foreign woman and her infant son from a mob in Cambridge in the fall of 1093. When Lassair and the sheriff’s man, Jack Chevestrier, later go looking for the woman’s missing family members, receding flood waters reveal a body that raises suspicions of murder. Meanwhile, Lassair’s Norman lover, Rollo, is on a covert mission to Miklagard (modern Istanbul) and the Holy Land for King William. New Age fans will appreciate how Lassair employs a “shining stone” to see events occurring elsewhere. As she grows more confident using the stone’s power, she becomes more assertive within her extended family and community. Clare does a good job generating tension by shifting the narrative in between England and Byzantium. Adding period flavor are the religious feelings characters evince at the beginning of the Crusades. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 11/17/2014
Release date: 01/01/2015
Genre: Fiction
Hardcover - 354 pages - 978-0-7278-9788-6
Paperback - 240 pages - 978-1-84751-541-4
Open Ebook - 240 pages - 978-1-78010-585-7
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