Shardlake goes to war...
Summer, 1545. England is at war. Henry VIII's invasion of France has gone badly wrong, and a massive French fleet is preparing to sail across the Channel . . .Meanwhile, Matthew Shardlake is given an intriguing legal case by an old servant of Queen Catherine Parr.
Asked to investigate claims of 'monstrous wrongs' committed against his young ward, Hugh Curteys, by Sir Nicholas Hobbey, Shardlake and his assistant Barak journey to Portsmouth. There, Shardlake also intends to investigate the mysterious past of Ellen Fettiplace, a young woman incarcerated in the Bedlam. Once in Portsmouth, Shardlake and Barak find themselves in a city preparing for war.
The mysteries surrounding the Hobbey family and the events that destroyed Ellen's family nineteen years before, involve Shardlake in reunions both with an old friend and an old enemy close to the throne. Soon events will converge on board one of the king's great warships gathered in Portsmouth harbour, waiting to sail out and confront the approaching French fleet. . .
©2010 C. J. Sansom (P)2014 Pan Macmillan Publishers Ltd.
This is another of the Shardlake tales with its mixture of fiction set against a background of actual events that are blended seamlessly and engagingly.
This installment in the saga deals with gender issues and one of the great tragedies of British naval history: the loss of the Mary Rose. The account of the final hours of the vessel are harrowing and the reader feels there with Shardlake aboard the doomed vessel and her crew.Several narrative threads are brought together by the end of the novel and the story of Ellen, the woman confined in Bedlam is resolved.
While there is happiness for some characters there is deep tragedy for others and Matthew Shardlake finds himself confronting the seemingly invulnerable Richard Rich yet again.
The characters are fully rounded and the pace never falters. Highly recommended to lovers of fine fiction.
Steven Crossley's narration is excellent as he captures the male characters superbly, however, his attempts with the female characters are less successful, but perhaps it is setting expectations too high.
The book kept me enthralled from start to finish.
I can't wait to hear the next installment!
I love the Shardlake series of books and this latest one has, as always, kept me intrigued all the way through till the end. I had previously read the other volumes in the series, but I am delighted with the audio version. Steven Crossley's voice is perfect for the main character (just how i had imagined Shardlake would sound like!). An incredible performance, so much so that I have already purchased the next audiobook in the series :)
Another one. .and I'm so disappointed. ..at the minute there is only one more...what am I going to listen to then..I've come to know Matthew Shardlake as a friend...I've missed not as he is described ' a Hunchback ' but I do suffer with disease of my spine ( AS )...but that aside I love the stories and the reading brings the characters to life..
I hope there will be more..
As brilliant as you'd expect.
Sure there are some common features with its predecessors, and also some repetitive plot devices. But, again, the weaving of plot, characters and historical intrigue is utterly captivating.
I enjoyed this book in every way. The descriptions are vivid and the feelings of fear conyeyed masterfully at climatic moments. The plot unraveled without my ability to second guess what was going to happen. A real thriller's suspense!
Up there at the top with the other unabridged Shardlake novels
The other Sharlake novels. As far as enjoyment, they have hit the spot as only Dick Francis & JK Rowling had previously, where domestic chores were left and invoices not raised, as couldn't stop listening.
Yes, he has a nice voice and nothing grated as it sometimes can do. He inst Stephen Fry who was perfect, with every different voice and inflection for each character when narrating the Harry Potter books; but was good with this.
No idea, but given the popularity of the recent adaptation of Wolf Hall; this series must be asking to be made for TV. As long as it's correctly cast, I and countless others, would guarantee it would rival anything (Downton/Poldark/Wolf Hall et al), already produced.
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