A great "next chapter" in the Matthew Shardlake historical fiction series. This book follows him in the little known period of English history between King Henry VIII and Queen Elizabeth. The "nobility" of England are enjoying the good life at the expense of the common people. The suffering of the common folks (starvation, homeless, physical abuse by the gentry, and more) stirs them into action, even as they hope for relief from the teenage king and "The Protector." "Justice" consists of a quick trial by the nobility with little evidence and then hanging.
Not exactly the good old days in jolly old England. Weave in a crime mystery, political intrigue between Mary and Elizabeth, religious turmoil in the wake of King Henry, Cromwell and Calvan and you have a great story. Matthew Shardlake (lawyer and amateur detective) is a compelling figure with a good heart and mind. This book is full of other interesting characters (continuing from prior novels in the series and new ones). Worth reading every word in its 800 pages and also the historical research section that comes with it.
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