As the autumn storms of 1271 ravage the East Anglian coast, Crowner Ralf finds the corpse of a brutally murdered soldier in the woods near Tyndal Priory. The dagger in the man's chest is engraved with a strange, cursive design, and the body is wrapped in a crusader's cloak. Was this the act of a member of the Assassin sect or was the weapon meant to mislead him in finding the killer
Ralf's decision to take the corpse to the priory for advice may be reasonable, but he is soon caught up in a maelstrom of conflict, both personal and political. The priory is deeply divided over whether to purchase a relic, a decision that endangers both Prioress Eleanor's leadership and the future of the hospital. Brother Thomas becomes a suspect in the murder itself, and Ralf must choose between the demands of his brother, the sheriff, and loyalty to a friend.
Meanwhile, the murderer watches and waits.
'Starred Review. A superior medieval thriller'. - PW.
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Priscilla Royal has a degree in World Literature from San Francisco State University, where she discovered the beauty of medieval literature. She is a theater fan as well as reader of history, mysteries, and fiction of lesser violence.
Priscilla grew up in British Columbia and until 2000, she worked for the Federal government in a variety of positions, all of which provided a wonderful education in the complexity of human experience and motivation.
Her works include Chambers of Death, Covenant with Hell, Favas Can Be Fatal, The Killing Season, Sanctity of Hate, Tyrant Of The Mind, Valley of Dry Bones and Wine of Violence.
When not hiding in the thirteenth century, she lives in Northern California and is a member of California Writers Club, Mystery Writers of America, and Sisters in Crime.
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