A notable landmark outside Bath becomes the scene of murder and mayhem down through the ages.
Solsbury Hill, the supposed site of King Arthur’s last battle against the Saxons, is one of the places Symon Cole and his wife Gwenllian must investigate in 1199 as they look into the suspicious death of the much disliked prior of Bath Abbey at the command of King John, who has no love for them. They get little help from the abbey members or the townsfolk. When more deaths follow, the sleuthing pair, who cannot accept the tale of a killer wolf, must solve the crime or lose their home. A century later, the hill features in the tale of Eldred, a poor monk accused of stealing valuable church property. Can his friends solve the crime in time to save his life? In 1453 the hill becomes the temporary home of a mystic whose past conceals from his followers a nasty secret that leads to more deaths on the haunted hill. Centuries later, actor Nick Revill of the King’s Men helps a damsel in distress and searches for lost treasure on the same hill. His inquiries are followed many years later by a pair of tricksters who try to solve a murder involving royalty. Finally, police and archeologists searching in 2010 for a serial killer’s gravesites find much more than they bargained for.
The seventh short-story cycle by The Medieval Murderers, featuring some of the same sleuths as their past collaborations (King Arthur’s Bones, 2009, etc.), provides an eventful but often uneven look at murder down through the centuries.