24 March 2021

Historical Fiction Spotlight: Deliverance: A Justice Belstrang Mystery (Justice Belstrang Mysteries Book 3)

New on Amazon UK and Amazon US

England, 1618:  At his manor of Thirldon, ex-Justice Belstrang - still at loggerheads with his old rival Justice Standish - receives devastating news: King James intends to purchase the estate for his favourite, the Marquis of Buckingham – and Belstrang must comply.

In the ensuing turmoil, while his son-in-law George petitions the King on his behalf, Belstrang receives a plea from a dying friend, Sir Richard Mountford, to visit him at Foxhill Manor. To take his mind off his troubles Belstrang goes - and discovers things are not so simple.

Sir Richard is not dying, but desperate. His brother John has been killed in an explosion at the family’s iron foundry, down in the remote Forest of Dean. They cast cannons for the Royal Armouries: a privileged and lucrative business. But Sir Richard does not believe John’s death was an accident.

Meanwhile, Mountford's cold-hearted son Francis treats him as an invalid. He fears things are being kept from him - and implores Belstrang to investigate.

The mystery deepens when a forester who was seen talking to Belstrang is murdered. Only after a violent confrontation on the bleak salt-marshes does the truth begin to unfold - and its implications reach far beyond England’s shores.

This time Belstrang must follow the trail to a very bitter end, which could be the making of him - or cause his undoing.

Praise for John Pilkington:

'Away from the corruption of London and no longer a Justice, but that doesn’t stop Belstrang uncovering dark deeds in this Jacobean thriller. A joy from mysterious beginnings to a satisfying conclusion by a master storyteller.' Paul Walker

'In The Witching Pool, John Pilkington once again puts us in the amiable company of retired Jacobean Justice, Robert Belstrang, familiar from his earlier historical thriller Legacy. In this adventure, Belstrang forsakes the mean streets of London in the aftermath of the Gunpowder Plot, for the rural byways of Worcestershire nearer home. But instead of treason, he finds himself confronted with murder, witchcraft, unmentionable crimes and a quest for legendary gold. Breath-takingly tense and gripping. Simply impossible to put down.' Peter Tonkin

'A sturdy and entertaining historical for fans of Elizabethan mysteries.’ Library Journal

‘Pilkington’s third Thomas the Falconer historical offers a real treat… This tale gives an authentic sense of Elizabethan life’s visceral side with all its lawlessness and brutality, including a climactic battle.’ Publishers Weekly

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About the Author

John Pilkington has written plays for radio and theatre, television scripts for the BBC and now concentrates on historical fiction, reflecting his passion for the Tudor and Stuart periods. A writer for over thirty years, he has published around twenty books including the Thomas the Falconer Mysteries (republished by Sharpe Books), the Marbeck spy series (Severn House) and two Restoration-era mysteries featuring actress-turned-sleuth Betsy Brand (republished by Joffe Books). He is also the author of a children’s series, the Elizabethan Mysteries (Usborne). Born in the north-west of England, he now lives in a quiet Devon village with his partner, and has a son who is a musician and composer. Find out more at his website, www.johnpilkington.co.uk, and find John on Twitter @_JohnPilkington.

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