The Midwife and the Assassin: A Midwife Mystery

Written by Sam Thomas
Review by Fiona Alison

Upon hearing of her nephew’s incarceration in the Tower, Lady Bridget Hodgson departs post-haste for London from her home in the English countryside only to find the story a ruse, engendered to coerce her and her assistant, Martha, into spying for Cromwell’s wily agent, Jonathan Marlowe. Reluctantly shedding her fine gowns and linens for rough wool and adopting a persona as a widowed country midwife, Bridget and Martha find lodgings in the cacophonous and pungent streets of The Cheap.

As ordered by Marlowe, they befriend Katherine Chidley, a well-known radical determined to destabilize the political status quo and fight for the rights of the underdog. When Katherine’s husband, Daniel, becomes the first in a series of murder victims, the three women band together to solve a dangerous mystery and perhaps save the country from the brink of Civil War.

Fourth in a series set in Puritan England, taking place three years after Bridget and Martha are forced to flee York, this Midwife tale will satisfy all lovers of a good historical mystery. Thomas gives us insight into the political world of 1640s England while we learn much about the art of 17th-century midwifery through fictionalized use of a historical court case. An absorbing and page-turning tale.