A Kirkus Indie Books of the Month Selection for July.
Francis Bacon is charged with investigating the murder of a fellow barrister at Gray's Inn. He recruits his unwanted prot?g? Thomas Clarady to do the tiresome legwork. The son of a privateer, Clarady will do anything to climb the Elizabethan social ladder. Bacon's powerful uncle Lord Burghley suspects Catholic conspirators of the crime, but other motives quickly emerge. Rival barristers contend for the murdered man's legal honors and wealthy clients. Highly-placed courtiers are implicated as the investigation reaches from Whitehall to the London streets. Bacon does the thinking; Clarady does the fencing. Everyone has something up his pinked and padded sleeve. Even the brilliant Francis Bacon is at a loss ? and in danger ? until he sees through the disguises of the season of Misrule.
The Francis Bacon Mystery Series
This series of historical mysteries features the philosopher-statesman Francis Bacon as a sleuth and spymaster. Since Francis prefers the comfort of his own chambers, like his spiritual descendent Nero Wolfe, he sends his pupil, the handsome young Thomas Clarady, out to gather information. Tom loves the work, not least because he meets so many interesting people, like Lord Burghley, Sir Walter Raleigh, and Christopher Marlowe. Murder by Misrule is the first book in the series.
Praise for Murder by Misrule
"Though the plot keeps the pages turning, the characters, major and minor, and the well-wrought historical details will make readers want to linger in the 16th century. A laugh-out-loud mystery that will delight fans of the genre." - Kirkus Starred Review
"Murder by Misrule is a delightful debut with characters that leap off the page, especially the brilliant if unwilling detective Francis Bacon and his street smart man Tom Clarady. Elizabeth Tudor rules, but Anna Castle triumphs." - Karen Harper, author of Mistress Shakespeare
"Well-researched... Murder by Misrule is also enormously entertaining; a mystery shot through with a series of misadventures, misunderstandings, and mendacity worthy of a Shakespearean comedy." - M. Louisa Locke, author of Bloody Lessons
?Historical mystery readers take note: Murder by Misrule is a wonderful example of Elizabethan times brought to life.? ? D. Donovan, eBook Reviewer, Midwest Book Review
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Anna Castle has been a waitress, software engineer, documentary linguist, college professor, and digital archivist. Historical fiction combines her lifelong love of stories and learning. She physically resides in Austin, Texas, and mentally counts herself a queen of infinite space.
For more information please visit Anna Castle's website and blog. You can also follow her on Facebook and Twitter.
Publication Date: June 8, 2014 Formats: Ebook, Paperback
Series: Francis Bacon Mysteries
Release Date: 8 June, 2014
Publisher: Capital Crime
Review Written: 20 June, 2014
I normally don't gravitate towards Mysteries, however I found myself loving this novel. Perhaps it was the draw of a 16th Century setting, or using Francis Bacon as the center character, but this novel left me gasping and sitting on the edge of my seat in eager suspense.
A murder of a high-ranking barrister in a time of multiple conspiracies (many of which are Catholic in nature due to Mary Stewart's trial and death sentence) sends high ranking London society into a dither. Believed to have had information on inner workings of other barristers, including possible traitors to the throne and money guzzlers, the barrister Tobias Smythson's position is a coveted one, eyed by many within Gray's Inn, including a young Francis Bacon. When he's appointed to the position however, Francis finds himself embroiled in the mysterious death of Smythson, conspiracies of betrayal, and attempting to try to crawl back into the Queen's good graces.
But things are tough, and even Francis isn't safe in this turmoil filled world. The question remains if he can figure out everything that is completely necessary to survive, or if he'll be caught in the web of lies and death before the end.
Having enjoyed this novel a lot, I hope to look into the other books in this series by Anna Castle. Her writing is engaging and exciting. She kept me guessing until the very end, and I very much enjoyed this book. If you enjoy the 16th century and murder mysteries, this books is definitely for you!