Black spots in City of Lights
inthine network of murder and the occult that spread through Paris, and even threatened the life of Louis XlV, later in the century.
The title history has given to the whole ghastly series of events in which Catherine and Lesage were key players is the Affair of the Poisons. City of Crows takes place in the lead-up to the affair. The focus is on fictional Charlotte, a woman of lowly birth whose husband has died of the plague.
She encounters the criminal Lesage when he has just been released from the galleys in Marseille. He is on his way to Paris to redeem a treasure hidden in a cellar to which he has the map.
Only one of Charlotte’s children, Nicolas, is still alive, but he has been kidnapped. Charlotte’s plan is to seek safety from the plague in Lyon, but Lesage persuades her to head for Paris to look for the boy. Stolen children are sold as slaves, or they become victims of sacrificial black masses.
With a heavy heart but with great courage, Charlotte makes the long journey to the capital in the hope of rescuing her son. Hope and love are the motives that inform all her actions. Her
EVEN AT HER MOST HORRIFYING, CHARLOTTE NEVER QUITE LOSES THE READER’S SYMPATHY
Author Chris Womersley has blood on his mind