cover image The Deadliest Sin

The Deadliest Sin

Jeri Westerson. Severn, $28.99 (224p) ISBN 978-0-7278-8971-3

It’s 1399 in Westerson’s solid 15th and final medieval noir featuring disgraced English nobleman Crispin Guest (after 2020’s Spiteful Bones), and Henry Bolingbroke, the exiled duke of Lancaster, poses a threat to the reign of Richard II. While Crispin, known as the Tracker for his reputation as a superior detective, waits to see what the conflict means for his future, Prioress Drueta, of London’s St. Frideswide Priory, summons him after two of the nuns under her care are killed in bizarre ways. One had food stuffed down her throat, and the second was smothered by a pillow wrapped in all the blankets of her sister nuns. Crispin agrees to investigate and begins to question the priory’s residents. When a third nun is found murdered with coins in her mouth, Crispin realizes that each murder illustrates one of the seven deadly sins. With access to part of the priory deemed off-limits because he’s a man and an outsider, he recruits an old friend to go undercover as a nun. The intriguing politics behind the murders compensate for a solution that isn’t one of the author’s best. Westerson wraps up the series’ major loose ends in a manner sure to satisfy fans. Agent: Joshua Bilmes, JABberwocky Literary. (Dec.)