I really enjoyed the first novel in this series of historical mysteries set in the Scots borderlands during the reign of Elizabeth I. The second one is - happily - just as good, with well drawn characters, lots of interesting historical detail and a clever whodunit at the center.
One of the great things about this series so far is that the history is more than scenery and decoration. Important plot points come out of the conditions of the place and the time. For example there is a wonderful scene in this one where Jenny Dodd impatiently tells the Deputy Warden only a man would imagine that any woman in her right mind would knife someone in her own bed. As any goodwife would tell you, that would just cause too much laundry to be contemplated!
Well think about it! You have to haul the water bucket by bucket from the well down at the end of the street, heat it on the hearth, drag it out into the yard, shave soap into it, scrub and rinse and wring and hang yards and yards and yards of heavy cloth. Its a whole day of back breaking work, and good luck hiding from you neighbors that you are washing blood out of your sheets.
Fun stuff here and I'm looking forward to the next in the series.