I’m reading more of this series. Thank you Mr. Sansom for a historical novel without too many of those galling in-your-face inaccuracies of the politically correct kind. This one is set in Tudor England, when King Henry VIII was at the end of his long reign and England did not quite yet rule the waves. I liked Sarjeant Matthew Shardlake, our protagonist, with his coif and robe, humpback and tender heart, friends with great last names, and penchant for stepping on some pretty important toes. He also seems to love women who can never love him and have a horrifying fear of drowning. Still, he is tenacious as a bulldog, relentlessly getting to the bottom of things. Things like: Why did Michael Calfhill hang himself? What monstrous thing did he discover when he visited his former pupils, now wards of a country gentleman? And what of Ellen Fettiplace, consigned to Bedlam, but not really mad? You know, some mysteries really are better off not solved. Or are they?

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