Exeter, 1195. When a prominent burgess and guild-master falls dead across his horse, Crowner John declines to hold an inquest as the man had been complaining of chest pains and shows no signs of injury.
Events take a sinister turn, however, when a straw-dolly is discovered hidden under the man's saddle, a spike driven through its heart.
Enlisting the help of her cousin, a cathedral canon with an eye to ecclesiastical advancement, the victim's strident widow begins a campaign in the name of the Church against witchcraft and the so-called 'cunning women' who practise it.
This escalates until Exeter is divided into two camps and a climate of fear predominates.
Still the coroner refuses to get involved - until his beloved mistress is accused of witchcraft.
Can Crowner John unearth the real culprit and save Nesta from the hangman's noose?
- Format: Paperback / softback
- Pages: 400 pages
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster
- Publication Date: 05/04/2004
- Category: Crime & mystery
- ISBN: 9780743449892