Madness and afterlife chase in quick adjustment in 16th-century England.
When a abundant woman clad alone in her night smock avalanche from the steeple of St. Vedast in London’s Foster Lane, Bianca Goddard, who’s moving into the adjacency with her husband, John Grunt, examines the body. She’s an herbalist accomplished in affliction and death, but she can’t acquaint abundant from the victim’s body, and the sole witness, a drunk, can say alone that the woman seemed out of her head. Ancestor Nelson, the priest at St. Vedast, offers to preside over burial rites for her alike admitting she appears to be a suicide. At the service, John introduces Bianca to Boisvert, the silversmith to whom John’s apprenticed and in whose abode John and Bianca are briefly living. Boisvert’s fiancee, Odile Farendon, a acceptable body who wants to advice restore the stripped, corrupt St. Vedast to its pre-Reformation glory, gives Bianca a fine clothes to abrasion to the wedding. Bianca, who has little use for the fripperies of her amusing betters, is balked that while she and John are active in Boisvert’s house, she can’t convenance the abracadabra she abstruse from her father. But a amazing afterlife at the bridal feast and letters of agnate cases give Bianca a new purpose, as do a blameworthy imprisonment, a confused will, and some tiresome political maneuverings amid the White Bakers’ and the Brown Bakers’ guilds. Despite an authorial abnegation about anachronisms, it’s disconcerting when actors adduce Hamlet 60 years afore it was written. Even more abstruse is a abnormal appearance who frames the account but contrarily has nothing to do with the plot.
Although the atypical may be freighted with too abundant analysis for its own good, its common charlatan (Death of an Alchemist, 2016, etc.), like so abounding others of her ilk, propels the activity actual auspiciously by refusing to apperception her own business.
During the tempestuous reign of Henry VIII, London alchemist Bianca Goddard has seen up close what keeps a man alive—and what can kill him. A good thing, for she will need all her knowledge to keep a friend away from the gallows . . .
Bianca and her husband John are delighted to share in the glad fortune of their friend, Boisvert, the silversmith, who is to wed Odile, the wealthy widow of a goldsmith. But a pall is cast over the upcoming nuptials when the body of a pregnant woman is found beneath the bell tower of St. Vedast, the very church where the betrothed are to be married.
Tragedy strikes again at the couple’s reception, when Odile suddenly drops dead in the middle of the wedding feast. The constable suspects Boisvert poisoned his new bride for her money, but there’s not a trace of poison in her food or wine. Could the two deaths be connected? To prove their friend’s innocence, Bianca will need to employ her knowledge of alchemy—for if she can determine how the bride was killed, she may find the person responsible for her murder—before another victim is added to the death toll . . .
Praise for The Alchemist’s Daughter
“Set during the twilight years of Henry VIII with vibrant characters, a compelling plot and accurate historical depictions, The Alchemist’s Daughter brings the darkness and danger of Tudor London vividly to life as it weaves its suspenseful tale. This beautifully written addition to the medieval mystery genre is sure to delight all fans of the period. —Sandra Worth, author of Pale Rose of England
“A smart, scientific sleuth…Lawrence uses her enthusiasm for Elizabethan England to create an historical novel within a mystery.” —Portland Monthly
“The writing is terrific, with great period details. There are lots of red herrings and a surprising amount of action that will keep readers engaged until the very last page.” —San Francisco Book Review
“I absolutely loved The Alchemist's Daughter - the characters, the authentic feel of the period, and of course the richly drawn story.” —Dorothy Cannell, author of Murder at Mullings
“Lawrence proves herself to be an excellent storyteller with this grim tale of murder, mayhem and medicine. —CentralMaine.com
“A realistic evocation of 16th century London’s underside. The various strands of the plot are so skillfully plaited together.” —Fiona Buckley
“Captivating . . . just smart enough to be charming without being precious or terribly unrealistic.” —Library Journal
“Well-written, enjoyable, and well-worth reading.” —New Mystery Reader
Praise for Death of an Alchemist
“Lawrence excels at exploring themes – parent-child conflict, dreams of eternal life, and the limitations of medicine – that have period and present-day resonance.” —Publishers Weekly
“Another exciting adventure on the back streets of 16th century London.” —RT Book Reviews
“Mary Lawrence is as sharp as ever…this is an exciting and very satisfying historical mystery in Tudor London.” —Kennebec Journal
Death at St. Vedast (A Bianca Goddard Mystery)
- BookDeath at St. Vedast (A Bianca Goddard Mystery)
- Author:Mary Lawrence
- Publishing Date:2016-12-27
- Number Of pages:304