Winter, 1607. A man is struck down in the grounds of Battle Abbey, Sussex. Before dawn breaks, he is dead.
Home to the Montagues, Battle has caught the paranoid eye of King James. The Catholic household is rumoured to shelter those loyal to the Pope, disguising them as servants within the abbey walls. And the last man sent to expose them was silenced before his report could reach London.
Daniel Pursglove is summoned to infiltrate Battle and find proof of treachery. He soon discovers that nearly everyone at the abbey has something to hide – for deeds far more dangerous than religious dissent. But one lone figure he senses only in the shadows, carefully concealed from the world. Could the notorious traitor Spero Pettingar finally be close at hand?
As more bodies are unearthed, Daniel determines to catch the culprit. But how do you unmask a killer when nobody is who they seem?
A Traitor in the Ice is the second novel in a series set in Jacobean England. Daniel Pursglove is ordered to Battle Abbey in Sussex in order to expose the treachery in Viscountess Montague’s home and to investigate an unexplained murder. This is a dark story with tales of treachery, murder and betrayal. It is exquisitely written and meticulously researched with great attention to detail. The author captures the era so well and highlights this dark and menacing period of time. Set during the Great Freeze of the 1600s it is atmospheric and the descriptions of the scenery are beautiful, conjuring up beautiful imagery and quote worthy sentences.
Daniel Pursglove is such an interesting and likeable character. Although we learn a lot about his background in book one, he continues to be a man shrouded in mystery and I want to learn so much more about him. There is a multitude of characters in the story and a lot of different things happening and it does get a little confusing keeping track of who is who. My only other grumble is the slow pacing and there is so much detail in here the plot sometimes gets lost in the background. I could have done without the chapters set at court, my interest lay with the Daniel Pursglove chapters and the murder mystery investigation.
This book could be read as a standalone, but reading the first book helped me familiarise myself with Pursglove and his background and why he is coerced into doing what he does. The ending left me a little baffled and definitely needs another book to explain some of the unanswered questions and I can’t help but feel I missed something. A must read for fans of historical fiction and readers who enjoy delving into detailed and well researched works of fiction.
Publisher: Headline Review
Publication Date (UK): 31 March 2022
Series: Daniel Pursglove #2
Page Count: 432
Genre: Historical Murder/Mystery
Thank you to the publisher for the gifted advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.
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