Prince of Darkness (Justin de Quincy Series #4)

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Overview

Justin de Quincy hastens to Paris at the request of his former lover only to discover that she was acting on behalf of his nemesis, Prince John. The prince has been implicated in a plot to kill his brother, King Richard, and wants Justin to prove the incriminating document false.

Realizing that John's suspected treachery may also risk the welfare of the woman he serves, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Justin reluctantly agrees to help. But his investigation unravels a sinister conspiracy ...

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Prince of Darkness

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Overview

Justin de Quincy hastens to Paris at the request of his former lover only to discover that she was acting on behalf of his nemesis, Prince John. The prince has been implicated in a plot to kill his brother, King Richard, and wants Justin to prove the incriminating document false.

Realizing that John's suspected treachery may also risk the welfare of the woman he serves, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Justin reluctantly agrees to help. But his investigation unravels a sinister conspiracy that might change the course of English history.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Convincing 12th-century European intrigue lifts Penman's engrossing fourth medieval mystery (after 2003's Dragon's Lair). In 1193, King Richard the Lion-Hearted is still imprisoned, while his devious and unscrupulous brother, Prince John, schemes to position himself to claim the English throne. When an obscure conspiracy seeks to implicate the prince in a plot to kill the king, John turns to young Justin de Quincy, Eleanor of Aquitaine's devoted aide, for help in clearing himself of the treason charge. In his pursuit of clues pointing to a number of suspects, De Quincy stumbles across several murders. Penman deftly weaves actual historical events into the narrative with nary a false note. While the murderer's identity may not come as much of a surprise, the author's thorough familiarity with her chosen period more than compensates. Agent, Molly Friedrich at Aaron Priest. (Mar. 31) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
Adult/High School-This mystery set in 12th-century England and France is long on character development and period adventure. The murder itself comes late in the plot, but teens with a taste for medieval politics-both international and gender-will be engaged by the twisting tale of Justin de Quincy's efforts to serve his Queen. The chapters are brief and roam between the British countryside and London, and Paris and the island of Mont St. Michel. Penman is careful and consistent in informing readers about communication issues arising as people from one culture try to speak with those of another. This series novel is less formulaic than Ellis Peters's "Brother Cadfael" mysteries (Warner), so those who appreciate their first meeting with de Quincy and his cohorts can find others by Penman as well. The historical detail is scrupulously accurate without being presented as a history lesson.-Francisca Goldsmith, Berkeley Public Library, CA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
In his fourth adventure (Dragon's Lair, 2003 etc.), Justin De Quincy, unacknowledged bastard son of the Bishop of Chester, is once again plunged into the dangerous work of "the Queen's man."While Eleanor of Aquitaine is spending 1193 in Germany ransoming her eldest son Richard, and her youngest son John is plotting with the French King to keep Richard in captivity, De Quincey receives an urgent summons to Paris from Claudine, mother of his child. Prince John, it seems, needs him to help prove that a letter accusing John of planning to murder his brother is a forgery. John has been warned of the plot by his former mistress, Arzhela de Dinan of Brittany. Realizing that he will be serving the Queen's interests after all, Justin makes an uneasy peace with John's man Durand de Curzon, who had recently tried to kill him, in order to foil the plot. The ill-matched travelers arrive too late at Mont St. Michel to save Arzhela, who has been savagely stabbed, managing to utter only a single word before she dies. Justin and Durand, promptly thrown in a dungeon for Arzhela's murder, barely escape with their lives. The spy known as the Breton seems to hold the key to the mystery, but finding him, unmasking the murderer, and solving John's problem will lead down dangerous paths for all involved. A wonderfully evocative medieval mystery that weaves historical fact with characters intriguing enough and adventures exciting enough to lure even nonspecialists. Author tour
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780425207819
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/7/2006
  • Series: Justin de Quincy Series , #4
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 5.52 (w) x 8.24 (h) x 0.93 (d)

Meet the Author

Sharon Kay Penman is the author of the Medieval Mystery series set in the reign of Eleanor of Aquitaine including The Queen's Man, Cruel as the Grave, and Dragon's Lair. She is also the author of six acclaimed historical novels and the New York Times bestseller Time and Chance.

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Table of Contents

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 7 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 – 8 of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Teriffic historical novel

    The ransom for King Richard the Lionhearted is gathered and his mother Eleanor goes to Germany to pay it. Prince John is unhappy with the news; he is more perturbed that Lady Constance of Brittany, the mother of a possible rival as heir to the throne Arthur, possesses a letter that implicates John in a plot to assassinate his royal brother.--- John knows the letter is a forgery and through subterfuge he gets Justin de Quincy, the Queen¿s man, to come to Paris where he convinces his visitor that Eleanor would want him to prove the document is a fake. During their investigation, Justin and his companion see an ally of the Prince die at the hands of an assassin¿s knife. They are charged with murder and brought to Constantine¿s manor to linger in her dungeon until they die. By the time they are freed, the killer has vanished, they have no proof and Richard is home believing his younger brother a traitor. Justin reluctantly returns to England pleading the Prince¿s case to Eleanor hoping she will see justice occurs by interceding between the brothers.--- Fans of Roberta Gellis¿ historical novels will definitely want to read Sharon Kay Penman latest medieval thriller PRINCE OF DARKNESS as the story contains a terrific mystery and a great look at the upper class lifestyle especially the royals during the Middle Ages. The hero may not like his assignments, but regardless of how he internally feels he always does his best. Readers will cherish him and hope he finds happiness as he has earned it. As usual Ms. Penman provides a spotlight that shines on a bygone era with an intensity and illumination rarely seen.--- Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 6, 2013

    Prince of Darkness

    It is always a pleasure to read Sharon Kay Penman. These mysteries as well as her historical fiction always enlighted the readers to the lives of these historical characters. Any fan of the Lion in Winter should read her books.

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  • Posted March 16, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    I really enjoyed this book.

    I enjoy medieval stories, if you do too you will enjoy this book very much. It's well written and has surprisingly funny things written in here and there that made me giggle.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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    Posted May 11, 2011

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    Posted October 30, 2008

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