MYSTERY

Death at St. Vedast: A Bianca Goddard Mystery

Kensington. Dec. 2016. 304p. ISBN 9781617737145. pap. $15; ebk. ISBN 9781617737152. M
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The year is 1543, and herbalist Bianca Goddard and her husband, John, are moving into central London from Southwark. Bianca is unhappy to be leaving behind her beloved study of chemistries and medicinals, but John believes he can become a member of the silver guild more quickly if they live closer to the guild hall. On the day of their arrival, a pregnant young woman is found dead in the courtyard of St. Vedast, the very same church where John's friend, Boisvert, is to marry Odile, the wealthy widow of a goldsmith. At the wedding reception, the bride suddenly drops dead. Did Boisvert poison his beloved Odile or was it something more sinister?
VERDICT Full of period details, Lawrence's latest series outing (after Death of an Alchemist) captures Tudor London in all its colorful, if noisome, splendor. A solid choice for devotees of Kathy Lynn Emerson's "Lady Appleton" series or Karen Harper's Elizabethan mysteries.

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