The Last Hours (Hardback)Minette Walters (author)
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June, 1348: the Black Death enters England through the port of Melcombe in the county of Dorsetshire.
Unprepared for the virulence of the disease, and the speed with which it spreads, the people of the county start to die in their thousands.
In the estate of Develish, Lady Anne takes control of her people's future - including the lives of two hundred bonded serfs. Strong, compassionate and resourceful, Lady Anne chooses a bastard slave, Thaddeus Thurkell, to act as her steward. Together, they decide to quarantine Develish by bringing the serfs inside the walls.
With this sudden overturning of the accepted social order, where serfs exist only to serve their lords, conflicts soon arise. Ignorant of what is happening in the world outside, they wrestle with themselves, with God and with the terrible uncertainty of their futures.
Lady Anne's people fear starvation but they fear the pestilence more. Who amongst them has the courage to leave the security of the walls? And how safe is anyone in Develish when a dreadful event threatens the uneasy status quo..?
A bestselling British crime writer, Minette Walters published her first full-length novel, The Ice House in 1992, winning the Crime Writers’ Association John Creasy Award for best first novel. Her other novels include The Sculptress and The Scold’s Bridle. Her first novel for ten years, The Last Hours is also her first work of fiction outside of the crime genre.
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Number of pages: 560
Weight: 866 g
Dimensions: 240 x 162 x 46 mm
Wonderful and sweeping, with a fabulous sense of place and history * Kate Mosse on The Last Hours *
An enthralling account of a calamitous time, and above all a wonderful testimony to the strength of the human spirit. I was caught from the first page. * Julian Fellowes on The Last Hours *
Atmosphere, imagination and narrative power of which few other writers are capable * The Times *
A vividly-wrought and powerful story. With The Last Hours, Minette Walters has brought her impressive skill as a writer of psychological crime to create a dark and gripping depiction of Medieval England in the jaws of the Black Death. * Elizabeth Fremantle on The Last Hours *
A seductive writer with an imagination that makes her dangerous to know * Sunday Express *
Walters's skill and subtlety in portraying the suffering and disarray of a feudal society in which disease rampages and God has seemingly gone mad is masterly. And, as with her bestselling suspense novels, the psychological drama is gripping. -- Elizabeth Buchan * Daily Mail *
Walters's crime novels are admired for their claustrophobic atmosphere and precision-engineered suspense. With The Last Hours, she has swapped that taut plotting for a more expansive structure and ambitiously broad canvas. * Guardian *
Gripping and original * BBC History Magazine *
Historical novels depend upon the writer's ability to create a credible past world and Walters manages this very well... This is an ideal read for those who just want a good story well told. Snuggle up in a chair on a cold winter night and enjoy. * nudge-book.com *
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I was really drawn into this enjoyable historical novel which painted an imaginative and thoroughly-researched picture of life in medieval England. It was a brutal and frightening world with a strict hierarchy imposed... More
“A breathtaking journey of the human spirit and its survival”
The arrival of the Black Death pits the selfish expectations and blinkered resistance of some, against those who have opened their eyes and hearts to work with each other, lessoning the ordeals they face by taking... More
“A change in style”
I was sent a copy of The Last Hours by Minette Walters to read and review by NetGalley.
This is a very different book from Minette Walters compared to her ‘classics’ The Ice House and The Sculptress. This novel is set... More
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