A young apprentice must use every skill he's learned to free his master from prison.
Crispin Guest lost everything but his honor when his support of the Duke of Lancaster earned him the enmity of King Richard II. Now he earns a living for himself and his apprentice, Jack Tucker, by pursuing thieves and murderers, an activity that’s earned him the sobriquet the Tracker (The Silence of Stones, 2016). Guest is drunk in a tavern when a man enveloped in a cloak gives him a purse of coins and a note bidding him to kill Elizabeth le Porter. Guest, no hit man, goes to warn the woman, who easily seduces him. He awakens to find her strangled. Certain that he’ll be assumed guilty, he sneaks off, hoping to find the real killer before the sheriffs, who bear him no love, arrest him. Although he’s identified by some neighbors who saw him on the scene, the sheriffs give him a few days to find the killer. With Jack’s help, Guest discovers that le Porter was a lady’s maid for a wealthy widow who possesses a valuable relic, the Virgin’s Tears. The Noreys family, desperate for money, has claimed the relic as theirs. When two Noreys brothers accuse Guest of having the relic himself, the ensuing fight leaves one of them dead. Placed under arrest, Guest must count on Jack to find the real killer. Jack finds help in a newly minted lawyer and some of Guest’s friends, but only in the middle of Guest’s confusing trial, when he is oddly set free on his own recognizance, do the sleuths find a way to establish his innocence.
Once again Guest’s past misdeeds actually help him in the present in a case that includes plenty of red herrings and an interesting look at medieval jurisprudence.