The Elixir of Death

The Elixir of Death

4.5 2
by Barnard Knight
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

1195. Prince Johnplots to seize the throne from his brother, Richard the Lionheart - and in his wicked schemes he is supported by King Philip of France, who offers to help John financially by sending him a mysterious alchemist, a Mohammedan named Nizam, who claims to be able to transmute base metals into gold. But the ship which was transporting Nizam and his

See more details below

Overview

1195. Prince Johnplots to seize the throne from his brother, Richard the Lionheart - and in his wicked schemes he is supported by King Philip of France, who offers to help John financially by sending him a mysterious alchemist, a Mohammedan named Nizam, who claims to be able to transmute base metals into gold. But the ship which was transporting Nizam and his retainers to the Devon tin mines is found wrecked off the south Devon coast, its crew savagely slaughtered.
Shortly afterwards, Sir Peter le Calve, a Norman knight living near Exeter, is foully murdered, being part-crucified and beheaded, his head stuck on the rood screen of the cathedral.
It's up to Sir John de Wolfe, the county coroner, to find a motive and connection between the killings. And just what is his unscrupulous brother-in-law, the disgraced ex-sheriff and known Prince John-sympathiser, Richard de Revelle, trying to hide?

Editorial Reviews

Evening Standard
Crowner John is a splendid character, full of imperfections and faults, but ultimately the triumphing hero.
Kirkus Reviews
County Coroner Sir John de Wolfe (Figure of Hate, 2005, etc.) investigates a series of brutal murders in 12th-century England. The discovery of the murdered crew from a shipwreck off the south Devon coast is just the first in a string of atrocities. The captain was the husband of Sir John's former mistress Hilda, and his investigation troubles both his shrewish wife Matilda and his current mistress. The only clue is the word "Saracen," uttered by a dying crew member. After a series of horrific murders, all apparently related by the use of an unusual knife and crossbows with Arabic lettering, Sir John realizes that all the victims were connected to a disastrous crusade. Meanwhile, Sir John's disgraced brother-in-law Richard de Revelle, son of a crusader, is involved in a scheme to make money for Prince John, who's still trying to seize his brother's throne. The King of France has sent Nizam, a Mohammedan alchemist, to work with a Scot to turn base metal to gold, and Richard is providing them the supplies they need and a secret place to work. When Hilda goes on her own crusade to track down her husband's killers, she's made a prisoner, along with Matilda and Richard. Only Sir John's last-minute arrival saves the day. More adventure than mystery, Knight's tenth populates a detailed, almost scholarly study of the period with well-drawn characters.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780743492157
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster UK
Publication date:
03/01/2007
Series:
A Crowner John Series, #10
Pages:
368
Product dimensions:
4.50(w) x 7.00(h) x 0.94(d)

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >