CWA Goldsboro Gold Dagger
Following on from Dissolution and Dark Fire, Sovereign is the third gripping historical novel in C. J. Sansom's number one bestselling Shardlake series, for fans of Hilary Mantel and Philippa Gregory.
'When it comes to intriguing Tudor-based narratives, Hilary Mantel has a serious rival' - Sunday Times
‘Sansom has the trick of writing an enthralling narrative. Like Hilary Mantel, he produces densely textured historical novels that absorb their readers in another time’ - Andrew Taylor, Spectator
Autumn, 1541: King Henry VIII has set out on a spectacular Progress to the North to attend an extravagant submission of his rebellious subjects in York.
Already in the city are lawyer Matthew Shardlake and his assistant Jack Barak. As well as assisting with legal work processing petitions to the King, Shardlake has reluctantly undertaken a special mission for the Archbishop Cranmer – to ensure the welfare of an important but dangerous conspirator being returned to London for interrogation.
But the murder of a local glazier involves Shardlake in deeper mysteries, connected not only to the prisoner in York Castle but to the royal family itself. And when Shardlake and Barak stumble upon a cache of secret papers which could threaten the Tudor throne, a chain of events unfolds that will lead to Shardlake facing the most terrifying fate of the age . . .
Continue the number one bestselling historical series with Revelation, Heartstone, Lamentation and Tombland.
I have enjoyed C. J. Sansom's series of historical novels set in Tudor England progressively more and more. Sovereign, following Dissolution and Dark Fire, is the best so far . . . Sansom has the perfect mixture of novelistic passion and historical detail.
Antonia Fraser, Sunday Telegraph Books of the Year
Even if heart-pounding suspense and stomach-tightening tension were all Sansom’s writing brought to the table, few would feel short-changed. Added to these gifts is a superb approximation of the crucible of fear, treachery and mistrust that was Tudor England, and a memorably blood-swollen portrait of the ogreish Henry’s inhumane kingship. A parchment-turner, and a regal one at that.
Not only a great detective novel but also a fabulous insight into the historical happenings of the Tudor period, this book is an absorbing read.