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Synopses & Reviews
It is the winter of 1537 and England is divided into those faithful to the Catholic Church and those loyal to the King and the newly established Church of England. Thomas Cromwell, Henry VIII's feared vicar-general, crusades against the old Church with savage new laws, rigged trials, and a vast network of informers. Queen Anne Boleyn has been beheaded and monasteries are being dissolved-their treasures pillaged and their lands eyed greedily by courtiers and country gentry. But having put down one people's rebellion, Cromwell fears another might topple the realm. So, when one of his commissioners is murdered in the monastery at Scarnsea on the south coast of England, he enlists his fellow reformer, Matthew Shardlake, a lawyer renowned as "the sharpest hunchback in the courts of England," to head the inquiry.
When Shardlake and his young clerk and protégé, Mark Poer, arrive at Scarnsea, the two are greeted with thinly veiled hostility and suspicion as their investigation quickly uncovers evidence of sexual misconduct, embezzlement, and treason. While the community of brothers is revealed to be far less pious than they would seem, Shardlake himself is shocked to discover truths about Cromwell that undermine his own beliefs and threaten to cost him his faith, and even his life. But when a novice is poisoned and a year-old corpse dredged up from a nearby pond, Shardlake must act quickly to prevent the killer from murdering again
Exciting and elegant, Dissolution is a riveting historical novel and a brilliant debut by a writer who is sure to attract fans of Iain Pears, Ellis Peters, and Umberto Eco.
"Reminiscent of Umberto Eco's The Name of the Rose (without much of the intellectual discourse), Sansom's first novel will not disappoint fans of historical fiction." Booklist
"With this cunningly plotted and darkly atmospheric effort, Sansom proves himself to be a promising newcomer." Publishers Weekly
In what's being called a brilliant debut, Sansom presents a riveting historical novel in which issues of politics and faith collide when a gruesome murder is committed in a remote Benedictine monastery during the reign of Henry VIII.
From the bestselling author of Winter in Madridand#160;andand#160;Dominionand#160;comes the exciting and elegantly written first novel in the Matthew Shardlake Tudor Mystery series
Dissolutionand#160;is an utterly riveting portrayal of Tudor England. The year is 1537, and the country is divided between those faithful to the Catholic Church and those loyal to the king and the newly established Church of England. When a royal commissioner is brutally murdered in a monastery on the south coast of England, Thomas Cromwell, Henry VIIIand#8217;s feared vicar general, summons fellow reformer Matthew Shardlake to lead the inquiry. Shardlake and his young protand#233;gand#233; uncover evidence of sexual misconduct, embezzlement, and treason, and when two other murders are revealed, they must move quickly to prevent the killer from striking again.
A "remarkable debut" (P. D. James), Dissolution introduces a thrilling historical series that is not to be missed by fans of Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 389-390).
About the Author
C. J. Sansom earned a Ph.D. in history and was a lawyer before becoming a full-time writer.
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