A Taste of Evil (A Widow of Bath Mystery) by Lindsay Townsend,
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: A Taste of Evil (A Widow of Bath Mystery) (Kindle Edition)
A Taste of Evil.
A Widow of Bath Mystery.
By Lindsay Townsend
Lindsay Townsend is to be congratulated on writing an intriguing historical mystery
In 1386 Alyson Weaver is in danger of being burnt as a witch. She is summoned to an inquisition, on the face of it to answer questions about to her faith. In fact to answer charges about Peter her 4th husband’s death.
Alyson, a wealthy widow, a weaver has powerful ecclesiastical and lay enemies, who create malicious gossip about her and want to seize her property.
Arthur, Lord Gascelyn, Alyson’s lover, sends an advocate, Solomon, a clerical advocate trained in Paris and Bologna to help her. Soloman has to decide whether or not he will defend Alyson, who he does not trust to tell the truth.
Alyson is skilled in the uses of herbs which leads to her being suspected of being a poisoner.
The author’s love of gardening translates well into A Taste of Evil. One example is the following description of Alyson’s appreciation of her garden. “Roses, blue-grey in the twilight, faintly scented the still night air before giving way to the more heady thyme and camomile, their flowers glowing like metal in the beams of the rising moon.”
The garden is Alyson’s refuge in which she enjoys taking her ease. “It was pleasant to sit in the garden, free of kitchen smoke and bustle, smelling roses and lavender…”
The author is also to be congratulated on her knowledge of the era. I particularly enjoyed the following description of Wells Cathedral and the skilful sub-text. At the sight of Wells Cathedral Soloman’s servant is transported into a higher world. “Saints and angels were with him now, staring out at him from the rising towers and glittering windows of the cathedral. Painted in brilliant greens, blues and scarlets, glowing in the hazy noon-day sun like jewels, the statues spoke to him without words, promising a heaven of beauty and peace where no pain could enter.”
A Taste of Evil is a tapestry of good and bad, of the pious and impious, beggars and thieves, Lollards and Pardoners, wholesome food and poison, husbands, wives, lovers and paramours. As the tapestry unfolded I became more and more impatient to discover who murdered Peter.