The Winter King: A Hawkenlye Mystery
England in 1211 is a dangerous place in more ways than one. When a baron who was close to King John dies under suspicious circumstances, healer Meggie d’Acquin is summoned to investigate; soon afterward, a young squire is murdered near Hawkenlye Abbey, causing Meggie and her father, Josse, to suspect a larger plot may be at work. Matters are further complicated by a mysterious old woman whose visions prophesy the king’s doom, visions soon shared by Meggie. As the body count grows, Meggie and Josse must find the connection between these events and uncover the plot before it’s too late.
With a large cast of characters and multiple points of view, it may take a while for a newcomer to get everyone straight; however, this does not detract from enjoying the story. Much attention is given to historical detail, particularly abbey life and knowledge of herbs and medicine. Meggie’s supernatural skills do feel somewhat out of place in a murder mystery, but reading the previous titles would no doubt be helpful. Regardless, The Winter King is an entertaining murder mystery in a rich historical setting.