In this installment, Henry sends Adelia to Glastonbury to verify that a pair of skeletons found in a fissure in the earth that was opened after an earthquake are actually Arthur and Guinevere. The Welsh believe that Arthur is still living in Avalon with plans to return them to glorious freedom and are quite rebellious. To quell their rebellions, Henry needs unequivocal proof that those bones are Arthur's and that he is really, most sincerely, dead.
Adelia of course is at a loss as to how to prove such a thing. But Henry is cannier than that. He needs her to prove that they aren't anyone else. So she sets off with her daughter, her servant Gyltha and her protector Mansur, luckily one step ahead of the church inquisition that plans to question her and possibly put her on trial for witchcraft.
At Glastonbury, Adelia quickly finds herself enmeshed in various mysteries. First her friend Emma, Lady Wolvercote goes missing. There is the question of who set the fire that destroyed the whole Abbey and thus blighted the town. And finally there is the mystery of the bones themselves.
I found this installment a big draggy in the middle. At one point I actually struggled through parts of it. I wonder if maybe I am a little put off by the repeated elements in the books? Henry browbeats Adelia into investigating, the Church is heavily involved in everything and Adelia is always in danger. She has been kidnapped in all three of the books, she's been at the point of being killed by a villain in all three books (until she save at the last moment) and in at least two of the books she's been thrown into pits. A little repetitive, methinks.
But the book did pick up momentum in the last third and got a lot more entertaining. I do have to commend the writer on her characters. The minor characters and great and there is a nice, subtle thread of humor that runs through the books that is becoming more evident with each installment.
I have to say I HATED the final paragraph of the book. It struck me as a bit horror movie-esque and really wasn't worthy of this series. I literally rolled my eyes and said 'Oh,come on!' I was incredibly annoyed.
Still I'll probably read the next book.