Searcher of the Dead (A Bess Ellyott Mystery #1)
Herbalist and widow Bess Ellyott tries to escape the loss of her husband in Elizabethan London only to find that death is following her, and she may very well be next in Searcher of the Dead, the first in a new historical mystery series by Nancy Herriman.Living amid the cultural flowering, religious strife, and political storms of Tudor England, Bess Ellyott is an herbalist, a widow, and a hunted woman. She fled London after her husband was brutally murdered, but the bucolic town in the countryside where she lands will offer her no solace. She still doesn’t know who killed her husband, but she knows one thing: The murderer is still out there. This becomes all too clear when Bess’s brother-in-law, a prosperous merchant, is himself found dead—dangling from a tree, an apparent suicide.But Bess doesn’t believe that for a moment, and nor do her neighbors. Competition is cutthroat in the 17th century, and word around the town holds that the dead man is a victim of rival merchants scheming to corner the wool market. Bess, though, is convinced the killer is out to destroy her family.Town constable Christopher Harwoode will cross members of his own family to help Bess find the killer—whose next target may very well be Queen Elizabeth I—in this unshakably gripping, devilishly unpredictable series debut that will delight fans of Alison Weir and Philippa Gregory.

Searcher of the Dead (A Bess Ellyott Mystery #1) Details

TitleSearcher of the Dead (A Bess Ellyott Mystery #1)
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseMar 13th, 2018
PublisherCrooked Lane Books
ISBN-139781683315384
Rating
GenreMystery, Historical, Historical Fiction, Historical Mystery, Fiction

Searcher of the Dead (A Bess Ellyott Mystery #1) Review

  • Juli
    January 1, 1970
    Bess Ellyot flees London after the death of her husband. Martin's cause of death was recorded as the bloody flux, but Bess knows he was murdered. After arriving at the home of her brother, she hopes that she has escaped from whatever evil killed her husband. But when her brother-in-law is found hanged in the woods, she knows that she has not escaped. Who killed the prosperous merchant and made it look like suicide? As she investigates with the help of a local constable, Bess discovers that the p Bess Ellyot flees London after the death of her husband. Martin's cause of death was recorded as the bloody flux, but Bess knows he was murdered. After arriving at the home of her brother, she hopes that she has escaped from whatever evil killed her husband. But when her brother-in-law is found hanged in the woods, she knows that she has not escaped. Who killed the prosperous merchant and made it look like suicide? As she investigates with the help of a local constable, Bess discovers that the plot is much more complex and horrifying than the murders of her two family members. It may even threaten Queen Elizabeth I herself!What an interesting and entertaining Tudor era mystery story! The descriptions of life and people of the era and the characters themselves really made this book impossible to put down! Bess is an herbalist and an intelligent, strong and determined woman. All of the side characters -- her family, Constable Harwood, etc -- made the plot richer and nicely complex. The mystery moved along at a fast pace, with several twists and suspects. This book is a great start for a new series, and a nice mix of historical fiction and mystery.Nancy Herriman is the author of several mystery books including the Mystery of Old San Francisco series. I will definitely be eagerly awaiting the next book in this series!**I voluntarily read an advanced readers copy of this book from Crooked Lane Books via NetGalley. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.**
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  • Kathy Martin
    January 1, 1970
    Bess Ellyot is a herbalist and a widow who has fled from London after her husband was poisoned. She is living with her brother in a small town. When her sister's husband is found dead, she doesn't believe that he committed suicide but that is what the crowner decides. A verdict of suicide means that his belongings are forfeited to the crown and the church leaving his widow destitute.Bess doesn't believe that it was suicide and, along with constable Kit Harwoode, investigates to prove that he was Bess Ellyot is a herbalist and a widow who has fled from London after her husband was poisoned. She is living with her brother in a small town. When her sister's husband is found dead, she doesn't believe that he committed suicide but that is what the crowner decides. A verdict of suicide means that his belongings are forfeited to the crown and the church leaving his widow destitute.Bess doesn't believe that it was suicide and, along with constable Kit Harwoode, investigates to prove that he was murdered and to find the murderer. Since her brother-in-law was a haughty, quarrelsome man, potential murderers aren't hard to find. He informed on the local Langham family for being closet Catholics and sheltering priests which led to the senior Langham dying in prison and leaving the son Bennett Langham angry with him. He also argued with fellow merchants about the quality of his goods and the major local landowner about selling a property the landowner wanted to expand his mill. This was a difficult time in England with Elizabeth trying to secure her throne and sending out inquisitors to find and eliminate the remaining Catholics and the Jesuit priest she assumed were trying to foment a revolution. The inquisitors were free to use torture to find the truth and Bess runs afoul of one since she has been to the Langham's home in her role as a healer. Bess's niece also fancies herself in love with Bennett Langham which puts their whole family at risk.This was an engaging mystery set in a time period I know almost nothing about. It was interesting to learn about the setting. I liked the growing relationship between Kit and Bess. I also thought the mystery was well done.
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  • eyes.2c
    January 1, 1970
    Suspicions run rife!Set in Elizabethan England, the customs of the times dictate that a suicide leaves those behind not only emotionally bereft, but they are stripped of all their worldly goods. Widowed herbalist Bess Ellyott's sister's husband is found hanging from a tree and is deemed a suicide by the authorities. Bess is determined to prove his death is murder.Her search opens herself and others up to close scrutiny by the small village community. In these times of unrest and papist plots, su Suspicions run rife!Set in Elizabethan England, the customs of the times dictate that a suicide leaves those behind not only emotionally bereft, but they are stripped of all their worldly goods. Widowed herbalist Bess Ellyott's sister's husband is found hanging from a tree and is deemed a suicide by the authorities. Bess is determined to prove his death is murder.Her search opens herself and others up to close scrutiny by the small village community. In these times of unrest and papist plots, such close observation is not welcome. Hints of a troubled past for Bess Ellyott, her having to flee London, and the fear of being found keeps being alluded to but we are given very few clues as to what that is about. I am sure all will be revealed as the series progresses.I found the constable Christopher Harwoode (Kit) an interesting character, as Bess appears to also.The plot is strewn with red herrings, papist fears and very few clues. Bess' niece Margery seems totally unaware of her danger and the danger she puts her family in. I found that somewhat irritating. A pleasant enough read but the action was protracted and hence my reading of the novel became so.I will likely want to read more in the series to see what mystery hangs over Bess's head, and to see more of Kit.A NetGalley ARC
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  • LadyJBookishNook
    January 1, 1970
    For all my reviews, visit my blog at http://ladyjbookishnook.blogspot.comFollow me onTwitterWhat a great historical mystery by author Nancy Herriman. Searcher of the Dead is the first installment in The Bess Ellyott Mystery Series. The story starts out in London but quickly moves to Wiltshire, England and takes place around the year 1593 during the Tudor Period. This book was loaded with things that I love (some of those things will also reveal how big of a nerd I am but that’s ok).Searcher of t For all my reviews, visit my blog at http://ladyjbookishnook.blogspot.comFollow me onTwitterWhat a great historical mystery by author Nancy Herriman. Searcher of the Dead is the first installment in The Bess Ellyott Mystery Series. The story starts out in London but quickly moves to Wiltshire, England and takes place around the year 1593 during the Tudor Period. This book was loaded with things that I love (some of those things will also reveal how big of a nerd I am but that’s ok).Searcher of the Dead was full of things in history that I didn’t know before. When I come across a word or topic I’m not familiar with I like to look up more information. Some of things I learned about in this book: searchers of the dead, plagues during this time period, town waites, hautbois, shawms, Abraham-men, Felo-de-se and non compos mentis (which I may suffer from periodically…I will let you look that one up).I have always loved reading books set during this time period. Nancy Herriman’sdescriptive writing brings the story to life, especially the town of Wiltshire and its surroundings. The main character was Bess Ellyott, an herbalist/healer. She is new to the town of Wiltshire and finds people are automatically suspicious of her because of that. Bess was definitely my favorite character. Her backstory was heartbreaking but even though she had a hard past she still persevered. I admire that in any human being but I especially admire that trait in a woman. What a strong character! I enjoyed the interaction between Bess and the constable, Kit Harwoode. Kit doesn’t quite know how to handle a woman like Bess. I felt the mystery itself was original and creative. The author had me guessing whodunit until the end. Definitely a 5 out of 5 stars for me. I hope there are many more Bess Ellyott Mysteries to come. I would recommend this book to everyone who loves historical mysteries and stories from England’s Tudor Period. Thank you Nancy Herriman, Crooked Lane Books, and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of this book to read.
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  • Kristina
    January 1, 1970
    Searcher of the Dead by Nancy Herriman is the first book A Bess Ellyott Mystery series that is set in the late sixteenth century (1593). Elizabeth “Bess” Ellyott is a widow, herbalist and healer who moved from London to Wiltshire one year ago after the death of her husband. Only Bess and her servant, Joan know that Martin Ellyott was murdered, and Bess hopes that the killer has not followed her to her new home. Bess returns home to where she lives with her brother, Robert Marshall, after attendi Searcher of the Dead by Nancy Herriman is the first book A Bess Ellyott Mystery series that is set in the late sixteenth century (1593). Elizabeth “Bess” Ellyott is a widow, herbalist and healer who moved from London to Wiltshire one year ago after the death of her husband. Only Bess and her servant, Joan know that Martin Ellyott was murdered, and Bess hopes that the killer has not followed her to her new home. Bess returns home to where she lives with her brother, Robert Marshall, after attending to a sick child. Waiting for Bess is her sister, Dorothie who is very distraught. Dorothie’s husband, Fulke Crofton failed to return home that evening after his journey to the nearby town of Devizes. She feels that Fulke has come to harm and wants them out searching immediately. Since dark is approaching, they convince her to wait until the morn. The next day Fulke is found suspended from a tree and the coroner’s jury quickly rules the death a suicide. In the dark of night, Bess examines the body to confirm that Fulke was murdered. But she will need tangible proof to get the coroner’s decision reversed. Constable Christopher “Kit” Harwoode joins Bess in the search for the truth. The pair ask discreet questions in their quest to uncover Fulke’s killer. Could it be the person lurking in the old priory? Is Fulke’s murder related to Martin’s? Travel back in time to when Queen Elizabeth I was reigning to pursue a killer in Searcher of the Dead.Searcher of the Dead is an Elizabethan mystery. Nancy Herriman captured the era with her descriptions of the clothing, housing, people’s attitudes and superstitions, how the characters spoke, and the way of life. The author included many interesting historical details that will fascinate readers. Priest holes, fines for not attending church every week, and Queen Elizabeth’s torturer-Richard Topcliffe and his cruel tactics are just a few of the interesting tidbits. The historical details overwhelm all else at times (heavy handed is the best way to describe it). I found the Searcher of the Dead to have a very slow pace thanks to the writing style and amount of detail included. The writing was stilted. I can understand the dialogue being awkward due to the way people spoke in the sixteenth century. However, the rest of the book needed a less formal writing style (it lacked an ease). It needed to be written in a way that would draw the readers in and keep them engaged (instead of drifting off to sleep until my dog started licking my face). The lack of action does not help matters either. The mystery of Fulke’s murder was compelling, and it contained some good clues along with misdirection. Many readers will be surprised by the identity of the person who committed the reprehensible act. I wish the author had not repeated the same details so many times throughout the book (Bess is obstinate and the details of the case for example). There is a romance blossoming between Bess and Kit that I am sure will progress in future books (they do make a good couple). I was satisfied with how the author wrapped up the storylines at the end of the book. Searcher of the Dead will appeal to those who are fascinated with the Elizabethan era.
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  • Maggies Daisy
    January 1, 1970
    Searcher Of The Dead by Nancy Herriman #NetGalley #SearcherOfTheDead #Bookreview #Goodreads#maggiesdaisy start 10/29/2017 end 11/00/2017A Recent widow and herbalist Bess Ellycott are one step away from finding the actual killer of her brother-in-law, who was found hanging from a tree. If her brother-in-law's death is ruled to be a suicide, then all his possessions will become the property of the Duke, leaving her sister and her two children penniless and without a home. Bess searches for clues i Searcher Of The Dead by Nancy Herriman #NetGalley #SearcherOfTheDead #Bookreview #Goodreads#maggiesdaisy start 10/29/2017 end 11/00/2017A Recent widow and herbalist Bess Ellycott are one step away from finding the actual killer of her brother-in-law, who was found hanging from a tree. If her brother-in-law's death is ruled to be a suicide, then all his possessions will become the property of the Duke, leaving her sister and her two children penniless and without a home. Bess searches for clues in all the wrong and right places. Upon meeting the elected Constable, where there seems to be some mutual attraction between them, but she has her doubts as to whether he can complete the task at hand without her continued help. This book was fun, witty, a dash of good historical subject matter, substantial characters to relate with encouragement or hostility in a land where men are considered superior to women. In 1593 Queen Elizabeth enacted a new bill named the "Act Against Puritans. In this bill, she requires that all individuals over the age of sixteen be responsible in attending church services on a weekly basis or face fines, imprisonment, and other such judicial penalties that were popular at that time. Repression, no freedom of religion.Act Against Puritans By Queen Elizabeth in 1593; "conform themselves to the obedience of the laws and statutes of this realm, in coming to the church to hear divine service," https://history.hanover.edu/texts/ENG...
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  • Christina
    January 1, 1970
    This historical mystery set in 1593 was a slow read. It’s about a young widower named Bess who is an herbalist. She is living with her brother after fleeing because her husband was murdered. Long story short, a murder takes place in Bess’ family that she sets out to solve… well kinda. She and the constable do equal parts sleuthing as you bounce back and forth between their points of view.The mystery was good in and of itself. I did not suspect who it turned out to be. And this book contained a l This historical mystery set in 1593 was a slow read. It’s about a young widower named Bess who is an herbalist. She is living with her brother after fleeing because her husband was murdered. Long story short, a murder takes place in Bess’ family that she sets out to solve… well kinda. She and the constable do equal parts sleuthing as you bounce back and forth between their points of view.The mystery was good in and of itself. I did not suspect who it turned out to be. And this book contained a lot of historical notes of the time such as the hiding of Jesuit priests and the subsequent punishment. Also, I did not know that if you failed to attend church back then you were fined or worse. Talk about the church having power. Anyways, the read was slow. It wasn’t bad… just slow. My interest kept waning at times. Though I never considered DNF’ing it. So I gave it three stars. I might continue with the series if the synopsis for the next book entices me.I received this book free in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Talk Supe
    January 1, 1970
    3.5 StarsI usually suck at mysteries in that I could never guess who the perpetrator is most of the time, but in the case of SEARCHER OF THE DEAD, the suspect was totally hidden and anything that might point out to him is under wraps! Fans of mysteries and suspense will get a kick trying to guess who the bad guy is. As this is the first in the series, I’m hoping that the succeeding books will have more imagery rooting it to the Elizabethan age. I’m a huge fan of historical mysteries primarily fo 3.5 StarsI usually suck at mysteries in that I could never guess who the perpetrator is most of the time, but in the case of SEARCHER OF THE DEAD, the suspect was totally hidden and anything that might point out to him is under wraps! Fans of mysteries and suspense will get a kick trying to guess who the bad guy is. As this is the first in the series, I’m hoping that the succeeding books will have more imagery rooting it to the Elizabethan age. I’m a huge fan of historical mysteries primarily for its unique setting and atmospheric feel. The basic elements of this series is great, it just needs a little tweaking IMHO to bring it up to say Veronica Speedwell level.
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  • Pat
    January 1, 1970
    Searcher of the Dead is Ms. Herriman’s debut entry into what I hope will become a long-running mystery series set realistically, and intriguingly, in the Elizabethan era. As in her other works (The Irish Healer and the Old San Francisco Mystery series) the heroine of the book, Bess Ellyot, is in the business of medicine. In this era, with medical knowledge in its infancy, Bess is an herbalist, but with the skills to recognize a murder when she sees one, even if it’s been ruled a suicide. At this Searcher of the Dead is Ms. Herriman’s debut entry into what I hope will become a long-running mystery series set realistically, and intriguingly, in the Elizabethan era. As in her other works (The Irish Healer and the Old San Francisco Mystery series) the heroine of the book, Bess Ellyot, is in the business of medicine. In this era, with medical knowledge in its infancy, Bess is an herbalist, but with the skills to recognize a murder when she sees one, even if it’s been ruled a suicide. At this fascinating period in history, a ruling of suicide means the entire family can lose every single thing they own, leaving them destitute. When it’s Bess’s brother-in-law who’s declared a suicide, she’s determined to get to the truth to save her family the shame, and their loss of their home and fortune. Even if means risking her reputation and her own life. Coming to her aid is the town constable, Christoper “Kit” Harwoode, a man with plenty of reasons of his own to stay with the suicide verdict, but reasonable enough to be willing to entertain Bess’s claims. I really liked Kit. A bit of a love interest, perhaps, but this is only vaguely a romance (which I can’t wait to see develop in future books!). This book is, at its core, a scrumptiously good mystery. In the character of Bess, Ms. Herriman has nimbly walked the fine line of creating a woman who is wholly of her own times and yet a woman modern readers can relate to and root for and recognize for her courage, headstrong stubbornness, and love of family.The language in this book is beautiful, especially for readers like me who love Elizabethan history and appreciate accurate wording for everyday items and events. And yet, for anyone not so familiar with the language of that era, the language isn’t so dense it can’t be figured out. Harder to figure out (delightfully so) is the truth at the bottom of the mystery. Did her brother-in-law commit the ultimate sin, or did one of his business rivals in the cutthroat wool trade take a shortcut to profit? There are plenty of terrific red herrings, richly drawn suspects, and evil deeds done as Bess unravels this tangled web of intrigue. I can hardly wait to see what’s next for this plucky, intelligent, relatable heroine and this exciting new series! I consider myself incredibly fortunate to have obtained an advance reading copy for review.
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  • Daphne Sharpe
    January 1, 1970
    An amazing book with a wealth of carefully researched detail. I love the Tudor/Elizabethan age,but I was fascinated with the workings of the justice system,the practices of the church and the beautiful descriptions of rural life in all its bloody glories.Bess Ellyott is a recent widow when the story starts,her husband has been murdered and the killer has not been found. We are left to guess why,but as this is the first book in this series,perhaps that will come later. (Hint Hint!!). Bess and her An amazing book with a wealth of carefully researched detail. I love the Tudor/Elizabethan age,but I was fascinated with the workings of the justice system,the practices of the church and the beautiful descriptions of rural life in all its bloody glories.Bess Ellyott is a recent widow when the story starts,her husband has been murdered and the killer has not been found. We are left to guess why,but as this is the first book in this series,perhaps that will come later. (Hint Hint!!). Bess and her serving woman,Joan,decide to leave London and stay with her brother Robert,in rural Wiltshire. Bess uses her skills as a herbalist to tend to the townsfolk who are too poor to afford medical care, and there is much information about what herbs are used for which illnesses. Rural life and details about country occupations are contrasted with the religious times when church attendance was compulsory or you were considered to be a recusant and could be subjected to torture and imprisonment,or even worse,have a visit from Richard Topcliffe, a well known torturer of Catholics. Death follows Bess to Wiltshire when her brother-in- law, Fulke Crofton is found hanging and it is believed to be suicide. This means that all his moveable goods are forfeit to the Crown and church, which will leave his widow and children penniless.The Town Constable Kit Harwoode pits himself against his own family and powerful members of the nobility to help Bess in her search for a killer. There is the prospect of a love angle between these two people which will hopefully continue in another book.An entertaining and well researched historical read, that does justice to the Elizabethan Age. I will be interested to read others in this series. Marvellous! .
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  • Moriah
    January 1, 1970
    I received a copy of this title from the publisher for an honest review. Searcher of the Dead is an Elizabethan era historical mystery featuring Bess Ellyott who has moved in with her brother following the death of her husband. There is a mystery surrounding the death of Bess's husband that is hinted at but not fully resolved in this title; she fled London after his death and is afraid that her current location will be found out. Bess fills her days tending to those unable to afford the care of I received a copy of this title from the publisher for an honest review. Searcher of the Dead is an Elizabethan era historical mystery featuring Bess Ellyott who has moved in with her brother following the death of her husband. There is a mystery surrounding the death of Bess's husband that is hinted at but not fully resolved in this title; she fled London after his death and is afraid that her current location will be found out. Bess fills her days tending to those unable to afford the care of a doctor or midwife; when the book opens, she is helping to treat the daughter of a local family who burned herself and the burn has begun to show signs of infection. Upon Bess's return home, she finds her sister very upset after her husband Fulke failed to return home on time. Bess and her brother Robert are sure that Fulke has just been delayed; early the next morning Dorothie returns with news that Fulke's horse has returned without his rider. Bess and Robert begin to search, but Bess quickly discovers her brother-in-law hanging in a wooded area. Local officials quickly determine suicide to be the cause of death, but it doesn't sit right with Bess. She works to convince the local constable, Kit Harwoode. Nominated for the job by his cousin Wat as a joke due to his wilder younger years, Kit accepted the position and does his best to carryout the duties of his job. The mystery is well done with twists and turns to keep the reader guessing, but for me, the strength of the story is the historical detail that the author imparts to the reader without making it feel like a history lesson. I'm not as familiar with the Elizabethan era, but I loved the details of how the justice system worked, the attitude toward Catholics, what medicine was like, and what life in a village was like. There is an interesting cast of secondary characters including Bess's maid Joan who previously lived on the streets in London before Bess befriended her, Bess's brother Robert, and Kit's cousin Gibb. Kit and Bess have the beginnings of a romance by the end of the book; I'm hoping this is the first in a new series. I can't wait to find out more of the circumstances of Bess's life in London in future installments.
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  • Lucy Crowe
    January 1, 1970
    Nancy Harriman has provided the cure for having finished the last Veronica Speedwell novel! Bess Ellyott is just the tonic I needed! Ms. Ellyott - a feisty, fearless herbalist living in 17th century London - is a woman on the run from the man who murdered her husband. She is also sister, aunt - and a healer to many in her newly-adopted community. When her brother-in-law is found hanging, Bess turns sleuth, and the results make for a truly captivating tale.Also featured in this - the first of wha Nancy Harriman has provided the cure for having finished the last Veronica Speedwell novel! Bess Ellyott is just the tonic I needed! Ms. Ellyott - a feisty, fearless herbalist living in 17th century London - is a woman on the run from the man who murdered her husband. She is also sister, aunt - and a healer to many in her newly-adopted community. When her brother-in-law is found hanging, Bess turns sleuth, and the results make for a truly captivating tale.Also featured in this - the first of what I hope is a large series - is Christopher Harwoode, local constable, a man at once exasperated and bewitched by Bess. Possibly a romance down the line?Harriman's attention to historical detail is remarkable - everything from clothing, to language, to period law has a wonderful authenticity, and to read this novel is to lose oneself in the far past. A truly enjoying interlude! Loved this!
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  • Argum
    January 1, 1970
    It took me a while to get into this, but enjoyed after I got over the hump. Bess is a widowed healer. She has fled London with her servant to her brother's home after the death (murder?) of her husband. When her sister's husband, a thoroughly disagreeable man, is found hanging from a tree, Bess uses her stubborn nature and questioning mind to prove he was killed and thereby save his worldly goods and her sister's future. The constable takes a shine to her despite this obstinate nature. Jesuits m It took me a while to get into this, but enjoyed after I got over the hump. Bess is a widowed healer. She has fled London with her servant to her brother's home after the death (murder?) of her husband. When her sister's husband, a thoroughly disagreeable man, is found hanging from a tree, Bess uses her stubborn nature and questioning mind to prove he was killed and thereby save his worldly goods and her sister's future. The constable takes a shine to her despite this obstinate nature. Jesuits may be in the area. The dead man turned in a recusant family. Are these connected? It was pretty heavy handed, but was pretty entertaining and had a couple good twists.
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  • Sheri
    January 1, 1970
    Herbalist, widow Bess Ellyott, escapes Elizabethan London after discovering that her husband is dead. This is book one in a brand new historical mystery series by Nancy Herriman (amazingly researched, BTW).After her escape she discovered that the murderer has followed her - and the next victim, is her brother in law! She's thoroughly convinced that someone is out to destroy her and hers.I love the setting of Tudor England and the characters are well developed and interesting. I loved the mystery Herbalist, widow Bess Ellyott, escapes Elizabethan London after discovering that her husband is dead. This is book one in a brand new historical mystery series by Nancy Herriman (amazingly researched, BTW).After her escape she discovered that the murderer has followed her - and the next victim, is her brother in law! She's thoroughly convinced that someone is out to destroy her and hers.I love the setting of Tudor England and the characters are well developed and interesting. I loved the mystery and look forward to the next book in the series.*I would like to thank the author/publisher/Netgalley for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for a fair and honest review*
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  • Susan
    January 1, 1970
    1590's and after the death of her family Bess Ellyott has gone to live with her brother Robert Marshall. All is well until the husband of her sister Dorothie, Fulke Crofton, is found hanged. Although the coroner proclaims a suicide Bess is not convinced. With the help of the town constable Christopher Harwoode she hopes to prove and find the murderer.An enyoyable well-written mystery with some likeable charaters and the growing relationship between Harwoode and Bess. A good start to a new series 1590's and after the death of her family Bess Ellyott has gone to live with her brother Robert Marshall. All is well until the husband of her sister Dorothie, Fulke Crofton, is found hanged. Although the coroner proclaims a suicide Bess is not convinced. With the help of the town constable Christopher Harwoode she hopes to prove and find the murderer.An enyoyable well-written mystery with some likeable charaters and the growing relationship between Harwoode and Bess. A good start to a new series.A NetGalley Book
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  • Shirley
    January 1, 1970
    I won a free copy of this book from Goodreads First Reads. It took me a while to get into this, but enjoyed eventually. THe historical period was applied in a heavy handed way or ignored most of the time. Bess is living as a widow with her brother. Her brother in law is found hanging from a tree and she believes it was not suicide. She is obstinate - i know this because they told me a lot. Some romancing with the constable. It was pretty heavy handed, but was pretty entertaining and had a couple I won a free copy of this book from Goodreads First Reads. It took me a while to get into this, but enjoyed eventually. THe historical period was applied in a heavy handed way or ignored most of the time. Bess is living as a widow with her brother. Her brother in law is found hanging from a tree and she believes it was not suicide. She is obstinate - i know this because they told me a lot. Some romancing with the constable. It was pretty heavy handed, but was pretty entertaining and had a couple good twists.
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  • nikkia neil
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks Crooked Lane Books and netgalley for this ARC.Very easy to feel camaraderie and respect for the heroine of this murder mystery. Set in the times of religious strife and backstabbing, this novel shines a spotlight behind the scenes so we can see how a smart woman got things done. Can't wait to read more!
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  • Marianne
    January 1, 1970
    Loved it! Right up my alley. Great mystery that kept me guessing (and I had it all wrong). Lots of historical info which I enjoyed. I will definitely look for the next book in the series. Thank you publisher and netgalley for this arc in exchange of an honest review.
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  • Pamela
    January 1, 1970
    I really loved this book. I thought the characters were very interesting and well written. I enjoyed the historical atmosphere to the story and felt the mystery was excellent. I loved seeing how things were done in that time period. Can't wait until the next Bess Ellyott book comes out.
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  • Amy
    January 1, 1970
    I like her other series much better
  • J. Else
    January 1, 1970
    Review to be posted in the Historical Novel Society spring newsletter and at: www.historicalnovelsociety.org.
  • Den
    January 1, 1970
    I am reviewing this book for Nancy Herriman, Crooked Lane Books, and NetGalley who gave me a copy of their book for an honest review. This book is set in the Tudor era and so that proved a hit with me to start with as I love reading about that period. Bess, is a herbalist, and after being widowed she moves in with her brother. Then her brother-in-law dies and she begins to think something strange is going on and begins to investigate. I’ll definitely be looking for more from this author.
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