by Fiona Buckley
Ursula Blanchard's young son is kidnapped. The ransom is not money something more deadly. An act of regicide. A problem that only her half-sister, Queen Elizabeth, can help her with. It's 1581 and some in the kingdom are affronted by the possibility of Elizabeth marrying the Duke of Alençon, a French Catholic. The return of the harsh days of Queen Mary are still remembered.
Ursula finds herself in an impossible and ever increasing dangerous situation. How to save her son, whilst balancing calling off the search for him without arousing general suspicion. How to do the kidnapper's bidding as the Queen herself leans towards the kidnappers demands, solving other political problems?
The faithful members of her household once again rally around, with the additional support of a surprising new member.
The hints of Elizabeth torn between wanting love and rule is beautifully understated.
Once again, a well written Ursula Blanchard mystery, with the turmoil embedded adding just the right amount of tension to make for a compelling read.
A NetGalley ARC