This time I can't agree with "J. Chippindale's review." I confess that I had been concerned where the series was going after the previous title. I can also appreciate Chippindale's concerns regarding taking the series out of Devon. However, I think that rather than taking the story out of Devon, Jecks has brought Devon into the greater picture and that is the politics, mystery, intrigue, murder, etc. that made up this period in English history. Sir Baldwin and friends don't have to particularly like what they are doing, but they know as brave men and women have always known and that is that "freedom is not free." Sir Baldwin is "doing his part" to help protect family and home which is something we all need reminding of from time to time. Rather than detract from this well written, well researched tomb, we should applaud Jecks continuing this series and expanding upon it rather than just allowing it to wallow and become redundant.
I am also thankful for Amazon.co.uk for providing this title when it is still not available in the U.S. The price and shipping charges were well worth it not to mention speed of delivery and courteous customer service.
Another great book from Michael Jecks, a bit different from the others, set in London this time. Baldwin is now a Politician representing Devon in Parliament as well as conducting an investigation into an assassination attempt on the Queen. Read his books, you will enjoy them i'm sure.
Michael Jecks gave up a career in the computer industry when he began writing the internationally successful Templar series. Well all I can say is the Computer Industries loss is the reader's gain. He has now written about a score of the Knights Templar mystery books featuring Sir Baldwin de Furnshill and Bailiff Simon Puttock and there are more to follow. Michael's books are full of intrigue and mystery and they are particularly well researched. Mr. Jecks lives in the area he writes about and I am sure this must assist him a great deal with his background research.
It is the year 1325, England is in turmoil, even the common people who do not normally care who is on the throne of England as long as they are able to put bread in their mouths, are showing signs not only of concern but there are also muttering of unrest growing almost daily. Edward II and his lover Dispenser are showing utter disregard not only for the Queen but also the King's Barons and chief advisers.
When the Queen's lady-in-waiting is slaughtered for no apparent reason and a man's body, that has been terribly mutilated is found behind the throne, the King demands justice. Sir Baldwin de Furnshill, Keeper of the King's Peace and an experienced man in these matters is called in to track down the killer. He is aided by his long time friend Simon Puttock.
However in a time when the King's friends can use any means at their disposal to promote their own ends, Sir Baldwin and his friends the bailiff must keep their wits about them just to stay alive.
I have always enjoyed the books of Michael Jecks, but I believe the author, like many before him and I am sure many to come, lost his way a little, mainly by taking his characters out of their Devon environment. This book also falls into that category, but I enjoyed it very much.
I can not recommend Michael Jecks enough, if you love historical crime books you will love his. This one involved King Edward II and his lover Hugh Le Despenser, Baldwin and Simon are charged with finding the killer of a Lady in waiting of the Queen and a mystery man found behind the throne in the Palace in London. They find themselves in a dangerous world far from home and have to put their fear of death aside to find the truth. Read it.
I think it is brilliant to read a bit more about the king and his relationship. I think it is brilliant to take the characters away from Devon, this way the history of the country can be included into the story a bit more. I think if they had stayed in Devon for the future the books would have lost their fastination and story line of the historical happenings in the country.