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Thursday 9 March 2017

'The Plague Road' by L. C. Tyler

Published by Constable,
6 October 2016.
ISBN 978-1-4721-2285-8

This book really evokes the atmosphere of a disease-ridden country.  It is 1665 and London is in the grip of the Great Plague.  John Grey, a lawyer, has remained in the City and is called on by Lord Arlington to investigate a very strange occurrence indeed.  It is that old chestnut - a body hidden amongst other bodies; in this case the body of a murdered man is discovered among the corpses rolled into a Plague pit.  The dead man has been stabbed and, since he was known to be carrying a letter from the Duke of York to the French ambassador, Arlington wants to get it back.

Grey finds he must travel out of London  and his journey reveals all the nightmare responses to a malignant disease that frightened people produce.  Others search for the letter and it is difficult to know who to trust.  John Grey has to tackle his task constantly fearing a stab in the back or the revelation of disease in those around him.  Samuel Pepys is one of the real life characters who appear in the tale.

The ramifications of the search get more and more complex as John tries to make sense of the happenings around him.  An exciting and well told tale with a satisfying conclusion.
Reviewer: Jennifer S. Palmer
L. C. Tyler has written 2 previous adventures for John Grey and also a comic series about Ethelred Tressider and Elsie Thirkettle.

L. C. Tyler  L C Tyler was born in Southend, Essex, and educated at Southend High School for Boys, Jesus College Oxford and City University London. After university he joined the Civil Service and worked at the Department of the Environment in London and Hong Kong. He then moved to the British Council, where his postings included Malaysia, Thailand, Sudan and Denmark.

Since returning to the UK he has lived in Sussex and London, and was Chief Executive of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health for eleven years. He is now a full time writer. His first novel, The Herring Seller's Apprentice, was published by Macmillan in 2007, followed by A Very Persistent Illusion, Ten Little Herrings, The Herring in the Library and Herring on the Nile. The first book in a new historical series, A Cruel Necessity, was published by Constable and Robinson in November 2014. The follow up is A Masterpiece of Corruption and was published in January 2016.

Jennifer Palmer Throughout my reading life crime fiction has been a constant interest; I really enjoyed my 15 years as an expatriate in the Far East, the Netherlands & the USA but occasionally the solace of closing my door to the outside world and sitting reading was highly therapeutic. I now lecture to adults on historical topics including Famous Historical Mysteries.

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