The Song of the Nightingale
In the winter of 1211, England lies under the double burden of lean times and the interdict laid on the country by a pope at loggerheads with King John. Ordinary people are crying out for vengeance against the lawlessness that ensues—and it arrives in the form of clandestine and deadly justice. Sir Josse D’Acquin is reluctantly obliged to find these perpetrators working outside the law. In addition, he must struggle with his feelings towards the former abbess, Helewise, and his fears for his son, missing after he fled England to take refuge among the Cathars.
This is billed as a mystery, but it is gentle and easily resolved; the focus of the Hawkenlye series seems to have shifted towards the ongoing stories of the characters rather than the individual mysteries. Despite this and the decidedly New Age overtones, I found the story engaging. While Clare provides enough background information to follow the main story lines, interested readers might prefer to go back to Fortune Like the Moon and pick up Josse and Helewise’s story from the beginning.