BBC History Magazine - - Books / Fiction -

Dis­so­lu­tion CJ San­som (2003)

Matthew Shard­lake made his first ap­pear­ance in this grip­ping and well-writ­ten novel. The year is 1537 and the lawyer is despatched to a soon-to-be dis­solved monastery to look into the bru­tal killing of one of Thomas Cromwell’s men. At the same time, a sac­ri­le­gious rit­ual ap­pears to have taken place in the monastery. As he in­ves­ti­gates, and more mur­ders take place, Shard­lake is forced to ques­tion ev­ery­thing he be­lieves and holds most dear.

Fire­drake’s Eye Pa­tri­cia Fin­ney (1992)

In 1583, Eliz­a­beth I be­comes the tar­get of a Catholic as­sas­si­na­tion plot hop­ing to re­store the old faith to Eng­land. Si­mon Ames and David Becket, two agents for Eliz­a­beth’s spy­mas­ter, Sir Fran­cis Wals­ing­ham, work to save the queen and un­mask the plot­ters. As they ven­ture into the danger­ous un­der­world of Tu­dor Lon­don, Fin­ney’s vivid use of lan­guage and her gift for lively char­ac­ter­i­sa­tion pro­duce a book of great orig­i­nal­ity and en­ergy.

Heresy SJ Par­ris (2010)

Par­ris has taken the real-life fig­ure of the free­think­ing Ital­ian poly­math and philoso­pher Gior­dano Bruno, who spent some years in El­iz­a­bethan Eng­land, and turned him into the hero of a se­ries of en­ter­tain­ing his­tor­i­cal thrillers. In the first of them, Bruno is soon in dan­ger when he is sent to Ox­ford to in­ves­ti­gate a con­spir­acy against the queen and is con­fronted by a se­ries of bru­tal mur­ders within one of the col­leges.

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