Murder and kidnapping are set against the momentous events of 1483.
Roger the Chapman has no sooner returned to Bristol from London when he is recalled by Richard of Gloucester, who wants him to solve the locked-room murder of a tutor and the abduction of his charge, Gideon Fitzalan. The death of Gloucester’s brother King Edward IV has set London abuzz with rumors. Gloucester suspects, but is unable to prove, that Edward was a bastard and his marriage to Elizabeth Woodville illegal. He has escorted his nephew to London to be crowned but still finds time to task Roger to solve the puzzling crime. Accompanied by Gideon’s valet Piers Daubenay, Roger arrives at Baynard’s to question Gideon’s nurse Dame Copley and Amphillis Hill, a seamstress at the castle, who was the last person to see Gideon and his tutor alive. Roger becomes suspicious of Amphillis, who seems to spend more time in meetings with various women in the streets of London than she does working in the castle. Roger narrowly escapes several murder attempts as he uses information about a pagan religion to find the truth.
Once more, Sedley (Wheel of Fate, 2010, etc.) cleverly weaves one of her stronger mysteries into a background of notable historical events.