It is medieval times, and the year is 1367. Master Hugh is much enjoying the peaceful life of Bampton, when a badly beaten chapman (traveling merchant) is found under the porch of St. Andrew's Chapel, where a former enemy now is a Priest. Master Hugh's attention is caught when they find an ancient, corroded coin is found in the man's mouth before burying him on the church grounds. The search is on for the dead chapman's killers, and where this coin came from - but there are many obstacles in his way, thanks to men of power and wealth, and that old nemesis who clearly is on their side. Never to be easy, they find themselves crossing paths with a kidnapped maiden, a tyrannical abbot, and a suffering monk. Will Master Hugh and his groom, Arthur uncover the killers before something happens to them?
While this is book five in the Chronicles Of Hugh de Singleton, you can easily jump into reading this one before reading the other four - but I recommend you pick them up if you haven't already, because this is a great set of historical mysteries. I found The Tainted Coin to be a page turner - I am completely guilty of ignoring the outside world and reading this one all in one evening!
I absolutely adore this series - yes, in part because it's set in my favorite time in history, of course, but also because the author's writing is absolutely wonderful, and he does a pretty good job at the historical point of view. For those unfamiliar with medieval speak, there is a glossary in the beginning of the book with many words that are no longer common in today's tongue, as well as a map of the town.
The Tainted Coin: The Fifth Chronicle Of Hugh de Singleton, Surgeon by Mel Starr is a paperback historical fiction book published by Monarch Books. It is 238 pages long. The suggested cover price is $14.99, but Amazon has it available for $10.19 as of this posting. It is also available as an e-book for the Kindle and other e-readers.
I received a copy of this book as part of a Kregel blog tour in order to share my thoughts on it. All opinions are my own, and not that of the author(s) or publisher.