Tuesday, 18 June 2019

#BlogTour The Serpent's Mark by S. W. Perry


Today it's my turn on the BlogTour The Serpent's Mark by S.W. Perry. It's historical crime fiction with a riveting set of characters and a persuasive plot.

About the Author
S. W. Perry was a journalist and broadcaster before retraining as an airline pilot. He lives in Worcestershire with his wife.

Follow @swperry_history @CorvusBooks on Twitter #TheSerpentsMark, on Goodreads, on Amazon, Buy The Serpent's Mark


About the book
A smart and gripping tale of conspiracy, murder and espionage in Elizabethan London, ideal for fans of CJ Sansom, Rory Clements and SG MacLean.

Treason sleeps for no man...
London, 1591. Nicholas Shelby, physician and reluctant spy, returns to his old haunts on London's lawless Bankside. But, when the queen's spymaster Robert Cecil asks him to investigate the dubious practices of a mysterious doctor from Switzerland, Nicholas is soon embroiled in a conspiracy that threatens not just the life of an innocent young patient, but the overthrow of Queen Elizabeth herself.

With fellow healer and mistress of the Jackdaw tavern, Bianca Merton, again at his side, Nicholas is drawn into a dangerous world of zealots, charlatans and fanatics. As their own lives become increasingly at risk, they find themselves confronting the greatest treason of all: the spectre of a bloody war between the faiths...
Review
This is the second book in the Jackdaw Mystery series and it absolutely can be read as a standalone novel. The author gives enough back-info on the previous book to get an understanding of the characters, but without taking over the plot in this one.

Nicholas Shelby finds himself in a rut and without any occupation, after struggling to cope with the death of his wife and child. Once again spymaster Robert Cecil decides to put Shelby to good use by sending him to find out whether the young grandson of his wife's relative is in danger.

Samuel has the falling sickness (epilepsy) and is being treated by a physician called Arcampora. Shelby knows better than anyone that there is no cure for the illness, so how exactly is Arcampora treating him and why is Samuel's new stepmother keeping him so isolated from the world?

Simultaneously Bianca is dealing with her cousin Bruno, who appears to be up to no good. He has the kind of secrets that end up with someone's head being mounted on a stake.The two of them, both Bianca and Nicholas, end up being drawn into the midst of the kind of plot they would rather not be involved in. It's a case of wanting to help others ends up with them being at the forefront of spy-games and dangerous controversial secrets.

Side-note: The whole trepanning practice might have made me wince here and there, and as if the story wasn't enough to conjure up horrific images of heads and holes, and holes in heads, well the Author's note absolutely sealed the deal where that is concerned.

I can say without a doubt that I would pick up a S.W. Perry and eagerly await a new Jackdaw Mystery featuring Nicholas Shelby, just a much as I would a book by Sansom, and I love a Shardlake. Perry absolutely deserves the same kind of recognition for his compelling Jackdaw series.

It's historical crime fiction with a riveting set of characters and persuasive plot. I look forward to seeing where Perry takes this series next.

Buy The Serpent's Mark ( The Jackdaw Mysteries #2) at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Corvus; pub date 6th June 2019. Buy at Amazon com.

Read my review of The Angel's Mark by S.W. Perry


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