Katherine S. (seaford, VA)
Prophecy is OK, not great. Many interesting details about Elizabeth I's reign in 1583 London; it's a fairly true to life story. It felt like it wanted to be a page-turner, but got bogged down with its' own history. Described as an Historical Thriller, but it is less than thrilling.
Anita S. (BOYNTON BEACH, FL)
When I started reading this book, I really enjoyed it. I liked the date and location where it took place. The use of historical figures in the story and the superstitious thinking at the time was interesting. But about 1/3 of the way through, I began to lose interest. The plots, subplots, intrigues and questions got tedious and I found that I really didn't care about the outcome. Maybe if I had read the prequel book, I may have found it more interesting. I wouldn't really recommend it to book clubs.
Valerie B. (Westfield, IN)
Hunky Giordano Bruno is back in this compelling page-turner. This time, he has wormed his way into the French ambassador's home when he finds himself in the middle of a complex plot to overthrow Elizabeth I and replace her with Mary, Queen of Scots--the one true queen according to the English and French Catholic faction.
Despite several "close-calls" Bruno deftly defies discovery of his true loyalties (a Protestant-leaning scientific humanist) and manages to keep his secrets from his hosts.
In addition to the coup-planning, Bruno is also brought into the fold by Sir Francis Walsingham on a series of murders of Elizabeth's ladies-in-waiting meant to scare the Queen into believing her death has been foretold by the stars.
Prophecy's plot twists alone are enough to make this book immensely interesting. But, Parris' historical detail and accuracy brings in a whole new element to the story. You actually feel like you are part of Elizabeth's court and can sense it's sights, smells and sounds.
Don't miss this satisfying sequel as I, for one, await Bruno's next thrilling mission.
Sue Ellen S. (CEDAR FALLS, IA)
"The Plot Thickens..."
I love all things Elizabethan and so looked forward to reading this "historical thriller" set in the court of Queen Elizabeth Tudor. Indeed the stage immediately is set for the solving of a murder—"a virgin defiled in the very court of the Virgin Queen." What next? An attempted murder of Elizabeth herself on the 25th anniversary of her reign? My favorite parts of the book did not relate to murders (more than one) but rather to the accounts of various attempts to unseat Elizabeth from her throne. Always a central force in the story, Elizabeth actually appears in the story much too briefly for me. And yet when she does, the author portrays her vividly—"this open-minded, unashamedly intellectual woman who, behind the generous smiles she bestows now on her fawning courtiers, must have a will of steel to have ruled so long alone in a world of men." I was left wanting more, but fans of mystery will find this a good read.
Rachel B. (Waynetown, IN)
I have not read "Heresy", the first book featuring Bruno, but the author makes it easy to get into his character and the story without the feeling of being out of order. It was a fun read, and held my attention. I really enjoyed the historical references, especially the reminders of just how much of a role the stern rules of class etiquette played in Courtly life. There were no surprises when it came to solving the mystery, but I liked the quality of the story enough not to be disappointed.
Carolyn G. (South Pasadena, CA)
A fun read
This is an intelligent piece of light fiction with realistic descriptions of 16th century London. I especially liked the boat rides on the Thames. At the beginning of reading, I was worried that the plot was going to focus too much on the occult or supernatural. Lucky for me this is just a great mystery. This would not be book for my book club, but I will certainly recommend it to my friends. I also think the book would make a great TV mini-series.
Joanne H. (Waconia, MN)
I think that I should like this book more than I do. It meets all the criteria for a good historical mystery, and is well written, though not beautifully written, as one of the editorial reviews states. The plot is well crafted, The period detail is good. Despite all these good things, there is something missing, perhaps in the characterizations, that left me emotionally uninvolved, and thus, disappointed overall.