Set in the 14th century in England, a vicar is found dead in a small village of Bottesford and there are rumours surrounding his death. Some say he died of natural causes, others think he was poisoned. Following the vicar’s death, a beggar is found murdered in St. Mary’s Church and his body draped across the altar. Worried that this incident might lead to a conflict with the Dominican Order, Bishop of Lincoln sends his emissary, Thomas Lester to investigate the murders.
At Bottesford, Thomas meets the Lord of Bottesford Manor, Sir Mortimer de Bray, and his daughter Cecily who is too outspoken for her own good.
Dame Alice, one of the wealthiest women in Ireland and Cecily’s aunt has fled her home in Ireland where she has been accused by the Church of being a witch and is hiding in a little cottage in the village.
Friar Justus from the Dominican Order and the emissary of the Archbishop of Canterbury has been sent to investigate the recent murders in Bottesford. The Friar suspects both murders are connected and there may be sorcery and witchcraft involved in their deaths. Or are there?
I like the author’s style in writing this book. I thought it complemented the story well. The story moved steadily and the twists and turns were well done. The characters are believable and interesting, although some might find the actions of some of the characters outrageous. Yet these quirky characters lend some credibility to the story considering the era in which it was set, where people were superstitious and engaged in pagan practices and all manner of debauchery.
Those Who Go By Night is an interesting blend of mystery and medieval history, debauchery, blackmail, and somewhat tempered by smidgens of romance. The outcome was satisfying and unexpected, and some parts made me chuckle. I’ll be looking forward to the next book if there will be a sequel.
Overall it was an enjoyable story for me, and with the authors strong writing style, I found myself finishing this one sitting. If you like historical fiction set in the Medieval period and steeped in mystery and superstition, you will love this book.
- Publisher: Crooked Lane Books (13 November 2018)