Her Majesty’s Spymaster
This is the story of Sir Francis Walsingham, Principal Secretary to Queen Elizabeth I of England. Caught up in the political and religious intrigue of Elizabeth’s early reign, Walsingham remains loyal to his queen. He uncovers plots and conspiracies to capture and execute people loyal to Mary, Queen of Scots, who is held in confinement by Elizabeth. Mary is still able to communicate with those who wish to return the English religion to Catholicism. Walsingham uses informers and develops a spy network throughout England and the Continent to thwart the covert plans of the Scottish queen and her minions.
In this enjoyable read, the author is able to convey how England was fragmented by religious beliefs and foreign interference from those nations who wished to bring England back to Catholicism. The book is well researched and includes a bibliography, notes on sources, and a chronology from 1532 to 1590. My only complaint about the book is the lack of interplay between Elizabeth and Walsingham; I would like to have known more about their relationship. Still, a fine book on the Elizabethan period.