In 1522 the rogue Roger Shallot and his sober-sided master Benjamin Daunbey are sent for by Cardinal Wolsey. Stafford, Duke of Buckingham, has been arrested for treason and Benjamin and Roger are made to witness his bloody execution. The true reason for Buckingham's downfall soon becomes apparent: he was searching at Templecombe Manor and Glastonbury Abbey in Somerset for two precious relics - the Holy Grail and Excalibur, the sword of King Arthur.
Benjamin and Shallot are ordered to Templecombe, accompanied by the leaders of King Henry VIII's dreaded secret service, the Agentes in Rebus, to find these relics for the King. They must pit their wits against the Templars, a secret organisation plotting against the Tudors, of which Buckingham may have been a part and who may still have a member of their society close to the crown.
The difficulties that wily Shallot - running true to his boast of possessing the fastest legs and quickest wits in Christendom - has to face soon make their presence felt: a duel, blackmail, the curses of a witch, the grisly hand of glory, decapitated heads, mysterious fires - and silent murder in the eerie Templar chapel.
What readers are saying about The Grail Murders:
'This book had it all, locked room murders, a mysterious country manor house, an abbey, Templar conspiracy and Arthurian folklore - excellent!'
'Fascinating... historical mysteries brought to life with lots of accurate historical facts'
'Excellent story. Always enjoyed the Shallot stories, he is a lovable rouge'
After his recent unveiling of a devious assassin, Sir Hugh Corbett has returned to service as the Keeper of the Secret Seal, begrudgingly admitting that his appetite for adventure has once again been whetted.
Summoned to meet the King to be congratulated on their work together, Corbett and Ranulf learn of the death of Corbett's close friend, Ralph Grandison. Ralph, a leper, has been found dead in a rowing boat, a dagger thrust through his chest. But this murder is not the first of its kind. Other patients of the hospital in which Ralph was staying have similarly slaughtered and it seems as though the lepers, all former knights of the Royal household, are being targeted.
The discovery that Ralph was killed by no ordinary weapon, but a poison dagger that once belonged with the Crown Jewels before being famously stolen, leads Corbett down a complex path, where the risk of disease plays out against the backdrop of finding an assassin who will use any means necessary to kill. As Corbett puts himself in the path of extreme danger, will he survive to see another day?
What readers are saying about Dark Serpent:
'A triumphant return for Sir Hugh Corbett'
'Lots of twists and turns - I couldn't wait to find out who the killer was'
'Highly recommended. Historical fiction at its best'
“The murderer is with us—on the train now . . .”
Just after midnight, the famous Orient Express is stopped in its tracks by a snowdrift. By morning, the millionaire Samuel Edward Ratchett lies dead in his compartment, stabbed a dozen times, his door locked from the inside. Without a shred of doubt, one of his fellow passengers is the murderer.
Isolated by the storm, detective Hercule Poirot must find the killer among a dozen of the dead man's enemies, before the murderer decides to strike again.
“What more . . . can a mystery addict desire?”—New York Times
'An engrossing and informative read' - Publishers Weekly
September 314AD, and once more death strikes the sprawling streets of Imperial Rome. When two prostitutes are found murdered - their bodies ripped open and their right eyes gouged out - it is feared a notorious killer, the Nefandus, has returned. Rumoured to be an imperial officer, he once waged bloody murder amongst Rome's prostitutes but vanished before his identity could be discovered. Has he reappeared, or is someone working in his guise? Desperate to retain order, the Empress Helena turns to her most trusted agent, Claudia. Helena commands her to discover the truth behind the Nefandus, before Rome descends further into chaos and confusion.
What readers are saying about Paul Doherty:
'Paul Doherty's books are a joy to read'
'The sounds and smells of the period seem to waft from the pages of [Paul Doherty's] books'
'A great read - I recommend to anyone who loves a good mystery'