In this fourth mystery featuring Jack Blackjack, a priest has been stabbed to death in the 16th century village of St Botolph, and Jack Blackjack stands accused of his murder. As Jack begins investigating the crime and questions those who knew the dead man, it becomes clear that not everyone can be telling him the whole truth.
The tale is steeped in the rich, bawdy background of sixteenth-century London ... Jack [is]...a likeable opportunist ... There are enough suspects and red herrings to keep mystery fans intrigued as Jack dodges money collectors, chases women, and searches for the culprit. Readers who enjoy the period details as much as the plot will be entertained.
... an enjoyable jaunt through mid-16th-century England ... Jack’s staying on the scene strains belief and leads to a series of plot contrivances, but the novel’s energetic pace never flags as Jack scampers from one catastrophe to the next. The underlying dilemma of priests being forced to give up their wives under pressure from Queen Mary lends a more serious tone to the otherwise madcap proceedings. Fans of Elizabethan historicals will have fun.