Tag Archives: Murder

Guillaume by Prue Batten – Review

Title – Guillaume (The Triptych Chronicle Book 2)
Author – Prue Batten
Genre – Historical Fiction
Publication – 10th Dec 2016
Pages – 314
My Rating – 5/5 Stars

Synopsis

The Church – powerful and moneyed.
The Heretics – zealous and poor.
Lyon – a city that might claim to cast the seeds of reformed thinking upon the world.
Guillaume of Anjou, formerly an archer fighting with other Angevins in the Third Crusade, is now the manager of a successful merchant house. In his new position, he unwittingly steps into and out of the shadowed world of trade and secrets in Lyon.
Guillaume carries the weight of a book in his hands – a book that may well light the flame of the greatest philosophical and spiritual change Europe will experience so that word and sword will cut a swathe through the fabric of life in Lyon.
But he has also made an enemy who wants nothing more than revenge.
He will fight for his life…

“With her customary elegant use of language, Prue Batten plunges us effortlessly into the mercantile houses, twisted alleys and secret shadowy tunnels of medieval Europe. Guillaume is a riveting tale of twelfth century trade, treachery and intrigue.” Matthew Harffy, bestselling author of The Bernicia Chronicles.

“This is for readers who love the historical fiction of writers such as Wendy Dunn, but yearn for the adventure of an earlier period and the excitement and mystery of ordinary people tangled in dangerous politics.” Gillian Polack, bestselling author of The Middle Ages Unlocked

Review

This is my first venture into the work of Prue Batten and I can safely say I was impressed!

The book follows a man named Guillaume who helps run a merchant house. I can’t lie, I loved him.

His life is about to change very quickly. As we go through the tale you can tell he likes to give out a calm impression but underneath he’s exhausted.

From the start of the book you can tell someone is either out to get Guillaume or destroy the business he helps run but you are kept guessing as to which and the motive behind it. I really enjoyed the mystery in the book, the author keeps you hooked until she is ready to reveal all.

Character development is the thing I look for most in a book. I need to find them believable and Prue Batten has put together an ensemble that ticks all the right boxes for me.  Not only was Guillaume a great character but the story also had a great supporting cast to the tale. The relationships, motivations and personas all felt right, they developed naturally rather than being forced.

This book is full of treachery, murder, mystery and intrigue. Shadows form the past return and it’s all woven together in a wonderful plot that was gripping from start to finish. This book really was a treat to read.

I also really enjoyed the descriptiveness used by the author. Prue gives you a background to the trade Guillaume is part of and this only added to the story which made it feel more real.

I can’t spoil the plot for you but can I can say this, there’s multiple players involved in this story and until the last few chapters you don’t have all the pieces so it a real buzz when things start to click together.

A special mention must go out for the ending of this book. Again I can’t spoil it but it suited the story perfectly and left me with that empty feeling..Hold on, that’s a good thing! I mean I was left with that “oh wow” moment and was left wanting.. needing more. I can’t wait to read more of the authors work.

Guillaume is a well written tale with great characters and a perfectly paced plot.. There’s nothing about this story I didn’t love!

My thanks go to the author for the chance to read/review their work. I’ll certainly be watching out for more 🙂

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon

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Murder In-Absentia by Assaph Mehr – Review

Title – Murder In-Absentia
Author – Assaph Mehr
Genre – Fantasy
Length – 306 Pages, Print Length
Publication – Oct 2015
My Rating – 5/5 Stars

Synopsis

A young man is found dead in his bed, with a look of extreme agony on his face and strange tattoos all over his body. His distraught senator father suspects foul play, and knows who to call on.

Enter Felix, a professional investigator. In the business of ferreting out dark information for his clients, Felix is neither a traditional detective nor a traditional magician – but something in between. Drawing on his experience of dealing with the shady elements of society and his aborted education in the magical arts, Felix dons his toga and sets out to discover the young man’s killers.

Murder in absentia is set in a fantasy world. The city of Egretia borrows elements from a thousand years of ancient Roman culture, from the founding of Rome to the late empire, mixed with a judicious amount of magic. This is a story of a cynical, hardboiled detective dealing with anything from daily life to the old forces roaming the world

This is a story of Togas, Daggers and Magic – it will appeal to lovers of urban fantasy, detective murder mysteries and ancient Rome.

Review

I thought this book was brilliant; it’s a murder/mystery book in a pure fantasy world drawing on themes from Roman culture and i have to thank the author for the chance to read/review the story.

I won’t lie.. I wasn’t sure if setting a murder mystery in a more historical time point would work.. but it did.

We follow Felix, he’s a private detective of sorts.. has his hands in a lot of things.. knows a lot of people.

His help has been requested to help find out what happened to a young boy who is found dead in some rather strange circumstances.

One of the best things about the book is that since it’s a fantasy novel the author has been able to had some magic into the mix.. so it’s not a clear cut murder as you might expect.

Throughout the book the author gives great insight into the character for Felix, how he knows what he does and why he’s involved in the business he is. The development of the main character definitely has me interested in future stories.

I won’t give away the plot but it’s well written and planned out. Lots of twists to keep you engaged and interested.

I’m a big fantasy fan and this book but a nice twist on the genre I’m used to reading and it was a very refreshing read that I must certainly want to follow up on.

Any fan of murder mysteries or detective novels should enjoy the historical twist on the usual tales.

Credit to the author, he’s left me with a need.. and he happily fills this need in his notes at the end of the book where he points out some other authors and tales a reader might be interested in reading. I will certainly be looking up these authors and will be adding Assaph Mehr to my “to watch” list.. eagerly awaiting the next Felix story.

Overall I couldn’t fault this book in any way, nothing felt wrong or out of place. The story flowed well and was highly intoxicating.. I was compelled to finish the story.. I had to find out how things played out.
The good news is that it looks like more tales are planned and being set in a fantasy world it leaves the door open to so many possibilities for stories… can’t wait.

To find out more head to Goodreads, Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com