Mosse returns to Languedoc, for a swashbuckler about a purloined inheritance and religious persecution. When a bookseller’s daughter, Minou Joubert, receives a cryptic letter containing only five words, “she knows that you live,” a chain of events is set in motion that includes adventure, betrayal, and romance.
The Burning Chambers is vastly ambitious and in the early chapters the reader may feel dazzled by the sheer number of characters and viewpoints, but Mosse has an instinctive feel for narrative momentum and the pace rarely falters as she moves between the intimate, domestic world, and the jostling for political power that shapes the lives of ordinary men and women ... Mosse weaves historical events and figures seamlessly with her own characters, and wears her considerable research lightly ... The Burning Chambers is a tour de force, a compelling adventure that views the past with insight, compassion and humour, and reminds us of the variety of women’s voices so often forgotten in the official accounts.
...[a] stirring new historical novel ... There’s a pleasingly old-fashioned feel to Mosse’s storytelling, with its chaste lovers, purloined letters, breathless escapes, plotting aristos, plucky youngsters and gruff but lovable soldiers ... If Mosse’s prose can be workmanlike, her plotting and pacing are impeccable. So is her ability to bring to life an extraordinarily complex conflict and era, as well as a vast cast of both fictional and historical figures ... Mosse doesn’t overstate the parallels between the 16th century’s Wars of Religion and our own. She doesn't need to ...[a] deeply satisfying, richly imagined novel...
...[a] meaty historical ... As usual, Mosse infuses the narrative with plenty of authentic historical detail while creating a highly charged atmosphere of intrigue. The mystery, the love story, and the incendiary nature of both setting and plot will keep readers turning the pages and eagerly awaiting the next volume.