( 4 1/2 stars out of 5 )
An excellent medieval whodunit by the author of The Unquiet Bones and A Corpse at St Andrew’s Chapel
Some valuable books have been stolen from Master John Wyclif, the well known scholar and Bible translator. He calls upon his friend and former pupil, Hugh de Singleton, to investigate. Hugh’s investigation leads him to Oxford where he again encounters Kate, the only woman who has tempted him to leave bachelor life behind, but Kate has another serious suitor. As Hugh’s pursuit of Kate becomes more successful, mysterious accidents begin to occur. Are these accidents tied to the missing books, or to his pursuit of Kate?
One of the stolen books turns up alongside the drowned body of a poor Oxford scholar. Another accident? Hugh certainly doesn t think so, but it will take all of his surgeon s skills to prove.
So begins another delightful and intriguing tale from the life of Hugh de Singleton, surgeon in the medieval village of Bampton. Masterfully researched by medieval scholar Mel Starr, the setting of the novel can be visited and recognized in modern-day England. Enjoy more of Hugh s dry wit, romantic interests, evolving faith, and dogged determination as he pursues his third case as bailiff of Bampton.
Mel Starr was born and grew up in Kalamazoo, Michigan. After graduating with a MA in history from Western Michigan University in 1970, he taught history in Michigan public schools for thirty-nine years, thirty-five of those in Portage, MI, where he retired in 2003 as chairman of the social studies department of Portage Northern High School. Mel and his wife, Susan, have two daughters and seven grandchildren.
Although it has a bit of a slow start, “A Trail of Ink” is an excellent medieval-era mystery. Starr’s knowledge of medieval history makes this book really stand out. It really gives you an insight into the lives of the people of that era. While it is the third in a series of books about Hugh de Singleton, it is a stand-alone novel.
I really enjoyed watching Hugh juggle his time between investigating and wooing Kate. I loved the humility of the man. He is certainly one of the best characters that I have read in some time.
I guess the best part of “A Trail of Ink” is that I came away from the story with a greater knowledge of, and appreciation of the medieval era.
I give it 4 1/2 stars out of 5.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from LitFuse Publicity Group. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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