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Prince of Darkness (The Queen's Man)

Prince of Darkness (The Queen's Man) [Kindle Edition]

Sharon Penman
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (57 customer reviews)

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Product Description


'Energetic and adroitly plotted... Justin is so beguiling, and the action so lively and unpredictable, that readers will cheer Justin's return in further adventures' Publisher's Weekly.

'Masterfully told... Penman's authentic period details, larger-than-life characters, and fast-paced plot add up to great reading for both mystery fans and history buffs.' Booklist.

Product Description

DECEMBER, AD 1193. England lies uneasy, a land without a king. Richard the Lionheart languishes in an Austrian dungeon and his brother John hungers for the crown. In the Lionheart's stead, Eleanor of Aquitaine rules. She is determined to prevent the outbreak of civil war, but the land is riven by treachery and there are few men she can trust.

Justin de Quincy is one of the few. Sharp-witted, bastard-born, he is the Queen's most trusted agent, a foil to John's machinations. But now John himself has asked for de Quincy's aid. A powerful conspiracy threatens the course of history and de Quincy will have to prove his mettle - or find an early grave - as he searches for its dark heart.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1128 KB
  • Print Length: 340 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0425207811
  • Publisher: Head of Zeus (1 April 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (57 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #915 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

I am an American of Irish-English-Welsh heritage, and I currently live in New Jersey, although many of my readers imagine I am happily dwelling upon a Welsh mountaintop--but no such luck. I was once a tax lawyer, which I looked upon as penance for my sins. Like most writers, I was born with a love of the written word, although I never expected to be able to support myself as a writer; when you read about starving artists in their garrets, most of them have starving writers as roommates. But I was very lucky and I have been blessed to make my living as a writer for the past twenty-seven years or so. All of my novels--eleven at last count--are set in the Middle Ages, and focus upon England's most colorful dynasty, the Plantagenets. It is almost as if they lived their dramatic and often wildly improbable lives with future historical novelists in mind, and I am very grateful to them--especially to the Angevins,Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine and their equally famous children, known to their contemporaries as the Devil's Brood.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
127 of 137 people found the following review helpful
By Amelrode VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Be patient if
- the phone rings
- your kids want to play with you
- dinner is served or
- your dogs wants to go for a walk
and will stop you from reading this marvellous book! All this will be a nuissance as these activities will force one to drop for the time being the new book by Sharon K Penman which is a real page turner!
It is Penmman' s tenth book and I have read them all - from the Sun in Splendour to the Dragon' s Lair.
The Prince of Darkness is the fourth mystery by Sharon K. Penman featuring Justin de Quincy as The Queen's Man solving the mysteries laying in the path of his Queen - the legendary Eleonor, Duchess of Aquitaine, Queen Dowager of England and once Queen of France. As in the previous novels the background is the power struggle between King Richard Lionheart and his younger brother John, the future King John Lackland. Justin founds himself serving suddenly Prince John as any unjust harm falling upon him would be against the wishes of his Queen.
By page 3 you will be in the plot, by page 15 you are hooked and latest by pages 50 you will absolutely absorbed in the story. I do not know how Penman does it but it is just fantastic. The story takes quite unexpected, but never unlogical turns and this is really good and intersting.
The story continues the Dragon' s Lair story as the personalities of the main characters (Justin, Durand, Claudine, John and Emma) develop. But for those who have read the Dragon Liar some time ago or even never have read it will no problem to understand the plot or the personalities and their story. Even in this repect very well done.
I finished my review on the Dragon's Lair with the line:"
I am already looking forward to the 4th mystery with Justin de Quincy" - well I just have to say now:
I am already looking forward to the 5th mystery with Justin de Quincy!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Emotional and engaging 20 July 2014
By Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
OK, this is the fourth book in the Queen’s Man series (originally released in 2005) and whilst I haven’t read the others, I did quickly become engrossed in the storyline. It takes off at an extraordinary pace and to be honest its one that really doesn’t let up from start to finish. Just thank the many deities out there that I decided to read this late at night when I was on my own as I think any disturbance would have been met with irritation.

The principle character is likeable, I loved spending time in his footsteps, seeing the emotional aspects intertwined with the intellect and when backed with a delicious plotline that has great prose and of course dialogue all round gave me a thoroughly enjoyable story.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fourth Book in the Justin de Quincey Series 7 May 2008
By J. Chippindale TOP 500 REVIEWER
Sharon K. Penman has written many historical novels, many of them large volumes of several hundred pages, all diligently researched and all of them highly acclaimed by the reading public. The novels featuring Justin de Quincey have been equally popular and take place in the late 12th century.

This is the fourth book in the Justin de Quincey series, a character we first came across in The Queen's Man, published in 1996. De Quincey can be likened to a modern day private detective, although he does his detecting work in the late 12th century. He is proud to call himself the Queen's man, the queen in question being Eleanor of Aquitaine, wife of the late Henry II and mother of Richard the Lionheart.

Bowing to an urgent summons from his former lover, Justin de Quincey races to Paris. On arrival he is more than a little annoyed to find that the Lady Claudine was acting on behalf of a man he dislikes intensely, Prince John. Because of his closeness with John's mother Justin has already seen what John is capable of doing and also his intense desire to take the throne of England.

When John tells him of a document implicating him in a plot to depose his brother Richard, Justin is not sure what to make of the fact. The document is in fact a forgery and John on this occasion is innocent of the charge but the prince needs the help of Justin to locate and destroy the document before Richards hears of it . . .
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great book from Sharon Penman 18 May 2014
By Li321
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
You will enjoy this book if you like your historical settings accurate, your characters realistic and your stories entertaining. This fictional mystery is seamlessly woven into real events. Sharon Penman never disappoints.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars another great book 11 Sep 2014
By Stan
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
After his sojourn in Wales, Justin is now despatched to France. The twist - this time he is working to help John, and is teamed with his arch-enemy Durand. As always the plot races you on and the historical setting is to Penmans normal high standard. What I really enjoyed was the development of a relationship between Justin and Durand. From outright hatred at the start, through being forced to work together they grow mutual respect and end, if not in liking, with more understanding of each other. John is still enigmatic and, though ruthless, attracts some sympathy. My only problem was that, as people travel around France, my geography was not up to locating the various places as you can in England or even Wales. Next book please Sharon.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great storytelling 29 Jun 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I have just finished this book and was gripped the whole way through. Sharon Penman has developed a wonderful set of believable characters and mixed them into the history of the time. I really enjoyed the four books enormously and couldn't put them down surely the sign of a great author. For anyone who loves history and great storytelling these books are a must read. I now want more please......... Sharon Penman is one of my favourite authors.
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