'Admirers of Shona MacLean's earlier novels will not be disappointed by the latest appearance of her Scottish sleuth, Alexander Seaton. Newcomers to the series be warned! You will find yourselves plunged into the claustrophobic society of 17th century Aberdeen, where fear stalks the corridors of academia and student battles besmirch the public beach ... Crucible of Secrets has a satisfying plot, but more importantly it has satisfying characters and a setting that educates as well as entertains. Alexander Seaton is well served' Shotsmag.
'MacLean provides an ingenious plot involving freemasonry, Rosicrucianism and the adventures of Scottish students on the Continent to explain the killing' Sunday Times.
'The period detail is excellent; the Aberdeen of the time is richly imagined, and the dialogue is terrifically subtle. The characterisation too is accomplished with both major and minor characters clearly and enjoyably distinct' Historical Novels Review.