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The Sacred Stone
The Medieval Murderers – Book VI

By The Medieval Murderers

A band of Norse settlers come upon a piece of meteorite while out hunting in 1067. The sky stone has the power to heal, but it also brings strife and death. Down the centuries, it comes into the possession of many people including crusaders on a visit to Chepstow, the manor lord of a Devon village, a group of Jewish kabalists in Norwich, the dying King Henry III, actors from Shakespearefs time and a modern explorer.

This is the sixth of these volumes containing linked stories by a group of popular historical mystery writers. This time it is the turn of newcomer Karen Maitland to join in the fun, and with her are usual suspects Susanna Gregory, Bernard Knight, Ian Morson and Philip Gooden. Gregory and Gooden have chosen to write about their series characters Sir Geoffrey Mappestone and Nick Revill, while Bernard Knight tells us about an incident in Thomas de Peynefs later years. The other writers opt for new settings and characters and, unlike the other books, none of the stories are labelled so you have to guess who has written them; an interesting touch. I was impressed with the quality and inventiveness of pretty much everything on offer, and would say that the tales are of an even quality making it hard to single out one as standing above the others. There is plenty of history – more than mystery in some of the stories – and each tale manages to plunge the reader into the setting immediately. I am not usually a short story fan but continue to be impressed with this unusual and imaginative series.

The Book

Simon and Schuster UK
8 July 2010
Trade Paperback
1847376770 / 9781847376770
Historical Mystery / Various times Various locations
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The Reviewer

Rachel A Hyde
Reviewed 2010
© 2010