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Murder at Hatfield House
An Elizabethan Mystery #1
Amanda Carmack

rOctober 1, 2013 / ISBN B00AR49IX4
Mystery – Historical


Reviewed by Cheryl Green

In 1588, under orders from Queen Mary, Lord Braceton has come to Hatfield House to find treason and heretics. Princess Elizabeth, under house arrest at Hatfield House, has gone through this before with her half–sister Queen Mary. Elizabeth has a very loyal and loving staff. This includes musicians Kate Haywood and he father Matthew. Many times they have been called upon to play soothing music that helps Elizabeth fall asleep. Just as Lord Braceton is approaching the gates of Hatfield House, a volley of arrows kills Lord Braceton's manservant Wat. He blames Princess Elizabeth.

Lord Braceton's turns the house and staff up-side-down. He is not as sharp as he appears. He did not notice anyone using the secret passages. Only one person did – Princess Elizabeth. She has Kate go to the village to pick up some spices for the mulled wine. She also hopes Kate will be able to pick up some gossip about the murder. There is no one about to gossip in the village, so Kate goes another route. She heads into the woods to speak to former Protestant Minister, Master Payne. He is not there but she finds books that could get him arrested or worse if found. Could the books hold a clue to the murder of the manservant?

Things to ponder: Did the arrow find the right target? Who knew Lord Braceton was making a surprise visit? Who was watching Kate return to Hatfield House under the misconception that it was really Princess Elizabeth?

Amanda Carmack has woven a rich tapestry showing life in Tudor England. She has woven her threads of secret passages, hidden agendas, treason and heretics into this thrilling Elizabethan mystery. This is a fast-paced read. All the twists and turns and red herrings will keep you turning the pages. The plot is intriguing. I love the mixing of real historical people with the fictional characters. The second in this series – Murder at Westminster Abby will be out in April 2014. I can’t wait to read this next adventure. If that seems like a long time to wait to read another book by Amanda Carmack, then you should try reading the books this author writes under – Amanda McCabe. So if you like your mystery with historical intrigue, then you should be reading Murder at Hatfield House.

Reviewed 2013