'Nightshade' by Paul Doherty.

'Ad audiendum et terminandum --- to hear and finish the business.
Letter of Edward I , 19 November 1303.'

Set in the reign of Edward 1 this novel follows the investigations of Hugh Corbett in January 1304. Hugh is a devoted emissary of the King and as such is sent on another dangerous mission.
A precious, jewelled cross, known as The Sanguis Christi, has been stolen from the Knights Templars and an unscrupulous lord is at the center of it's disappearance.

'According to legend , the rubies were embedded in the True Cross found by Empress Helena a thousand years ago.'

Running parallel to this tale is the terrifying bowman , Sagittarius. .

'I am the other meaning of nightshade. Do you know it priest? It is that time of the night when the darkness grows a little deeper and the demons lurk.'
'I am God's judgement priest.'

Running amoke through various communities his terror is heralded by the sound of a hunting horn , at which inhabitants run for their lives. No-one has ever encountered this murderer face to face but his victims encompass all classes of society. Fear, terror and suspicion abound in the village of Mistleham.
'Time is like the seasons outside... They run parallel to each other . We sow in autumn, watch in winter, tend in spring and reap in summer. Here at Mistleham a bloody harvest has sprouted, but the seed...'

Hugh Corbett, and his assistant Ranulf travel to these communities in the hope of finding The Sanguis Cross and finding the mysterious bowman and in doing so put their own lives in great danger.

Paul Doherty's books never fail to impress me.The reign of Edward I, the templars and crusades are all interwoven in this exciting tale. Well researched and written in an easy style, the reader is drawn into the story from the first page. This murder, mystery fulminated in a brilliant, unexpected conclusion. I highly recommend this book.


Margaret said…
I've never come across Doherty's books. Obviously, I'm missing out! Why are there so many books I'd like to read?
Like Margaret, I too haven't read any Doherty. I think I am missing something!
Anonymous said…
I have never read Doherty's books befor either. This looks like a great read. I enjoyed reading your review. I hope you are having a lovely weekend.
Jenny Girl said…
Murder and mystery in an English court....who would have thought! Added it to my tbr.

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