The Masque of a Murderer (2015) London, 1667
In Susanna Calkins’s next richly drawn mystery set in 17th century England, Lucy Campion, formerly a chambermaid in the local magistrate’s household, has now found gainful employment as a printer’s apprentice.
On a freezing winter afternoon in 1667, she accompanies the magistrate’s daughter, Sarah, to the home of a severely injured Quaker man to record his dying words, a common practice of the time. The man, having been trampled by a horse and cart the night before, only has a few hours left to live. Lucy scribbles down the Quaker man’s last utterances, but she’s unprepared for what he reveals to her—that someone deliberately pushed him into the path of the horse, because of a secret he had recently uncovered.
Fearful that Sarah might be traveling in the company of a murderer, Lucy feels compelled to seek the truth, with the help of the magistrate's son, Adam, and the local constable. But delving into the dead man’s background might prove more dangerous than any of them had imagined.
In The Masque of a Murderer, Susanna Calkins has once again combined finely wrought characters, a richly detailed historical atmosphere, and a tightly-plotted mystery into a compelling read.
What the reviewers are saying...
"Susanna is becoming one of the best historical mystery writers on the market. The Masque of a Murderer is a resounding winner. I can’t wait to read the next book in this series."
- Erin Al-Mehairi, Hook of a Book
"A very impressive historical novel with an intriguing plot. Highly recommended."
- Steve Barge, In Search of the Classic Mystery Novel
“ The pages just flew by… The writing is so easy to read. The characters are all so well-developed…It’s really just a great book, to be honest. And one that I would highly recommend.”
- Tara, Tales of a Book Addict
“Her writing style is smooth, engaging as well as authentic to the time period. Her knowledge of history is evident. Definitely recommend this book to mystery and HF lovers.”
- Margaret, Just One More Chapter
"I was kept in suspense until the end, so I thoroughly enjoyed the surprise. If you love a good mystery, you won't regret it!"
- Vicky, Random Little Faves
(Sue Feder Historical Mystery)
NOMINATED for a
2016 AGATHA Award!!
NOMINATED for the 2016 Mary Higgins Clark Award!!!
NOMINATED for the 2016 Bruce Alexander Historical Mystery (Lefty) Award!!!
Aunt Agatha's Top Ten Books of 2015
"Calkins brings a true historian’s grasp of the time period to her writing, but she’s also a natural storyteller and her central character is a wonderful creation." -Aunt Agatha's Bookstore
“Absorbing… Calkins’ tantalizing clues and rich historical details depicting everyday life and class differences draw readers into the seventeenth century, led by the piquant and elusive Lucy..."
“Assured… Calkins’s familiarity with the period and her use of obscure details, such as the fire court set up to adjudicate claims after the Great Fire of 1666, are a plus.” —Publishers Weekly"
"In the wake of the plague and London’s Great Fire, smart, spirited Lucy Campion triumphs once again in this exciting tale of deceit and betrayal. Susanna Calkins transports the reader to 17th century London with vibrant characters and details so real you can touch them."
~Alyssa Maxwell, author of The Gilded Newport Mysteries