Revelation, By C J Samson
Sunday 19 October 2008
This fourth novel in the series featuring C J Samson's 16th-century hunchbacked lawyer Matthew Shardlake, is nearly a tick-all-the-boxes, on-trend combination of history and crime, pandering as it does to our apparently never-ending fascination with the Tudors and with those biblically-inspired serial killers in the manner of the film Seven, to form the basis of the plot.
When Shardlake's close friend is murdered in a particularly bizarre manner, the ensuing investigation takes on a personal element. (Is it desire for revenge or desire for justice that motivates the seeker after truth? It's always a staple question of crime fiction.) Samson's historical detail is nicely plied, never too forced, but his tone can be a little dry and, in spite of the fascinating period – Lady Latimer is about to become Catherine Parr, sixth wife of Henry the VIII, unless counter-reformationists stop the whole show, while incarceration in Bedlam looms for another young character – tension is subdued almost to the point of silence.
arts + entsThere were towering ideas, some scintillating performances and revelatory grooves... our writers pick out their personal highlights
elephant appealThe first 23 lots in our charity auction have now gone. But there are 22 more still up for grabs
elephant appealPrince William signs up for our charity appeal
peoplePrepare to be entranced by worms as the molecular biologist gets ready to give the Royal Institution science lectures
elephant appealSo says man jailed for cutting off dead elephant's tusks
booksWe examine the best titles for teens
voicesPeople moan that Christmas is too commercial, the spirit lost. But it is a time to over-indulge, and always has been, says DJ Taylor
scienceResearchers teach border collie to understand sentences using more than 1,000 words
booksA Christmas story in six parts
travelWill high-value tourism help the workshops of this Renaissance city?
food + drinkA trifle without custard? Surely not! Nonsense – and here’s three to finish your festive meal that prove it
Geoffrey Macnab does not like the comedian's big screen debut
Arts & Ents blogs
Heavy rain and years of 'benign neglect' may have caused Apollo Theatre roof collapse
Christmas comes early: Justin Bieber is 'retiring from music'
Justin Bieber isn't retiring from music after all
Nymphomaniac, film review: 'Despite the surreal sex scenes this is a serious drama'
The publisher who played with fire: the battle for control of Larsson's £30m legacy
- 1 Top PR exec Justine Sacco under fire for sending racist tweet before flying to Africa
- 2 French pub fined €9,000 after customers returned empties to bar - because it's 'undeclared labour'
- 3 Sun will 'flip upside down' within weeks, says Nasa
- 4 The publisher who played with fire: the battle for control of Larsson's £30m legacy
- 5 Police seize possessions of rough sleepers in crackdown on homelessness
- < Previous
- Next >