1536: a year when strange ideas intrude, strange lands are discovered, and the king's dissolution of the monasteries overturns the customs and authorities of centuries. In the new world order, spies abound. Who can be trusted? For Brother Pacificus of the Abbey of St Benet's in Norfolk, it seems as if his Abbey alone will be spared. But this last Benedictine house is mired in murder and intrigue. When Pacificus is implicated, more than his own dark past comes to light, while the body count keeps rising. Pacificus' fate becomes entwined with that of three local children after their parents are arrested for treason and heresy. Protected only by this errant monk, a mysterious leper and a Dutch eel-catcher, the children must quickly adjust; seeking their own identity, they soon find that neither parents nor protectors are quite what they seem. Based on historical events, this post-medieval mystery is laced with romance, fuelled by greed and decorated with bouts of feasting, smuggling and jailbreak.
`Quite magnificent... moments of astonishing power... a work of importance... the capacity to become a cult book' -- Penelope Wilcock This engrossing story takes the reader into the cauldron of Reformation England, where every choice balances between agonising death and compromised conscience. -- Edoardo Albert `I was immediately drawn in to The Heretic. I couldn't stop reading. It's a book of big ideas, political intrigue, and action; I came to love Brother Pacificus, Simon, the children, and the many other characters, and I have to admit, I shed several tears on their behalf. Based on historical events, this book has it all, and I would recommend it to anyone interested in such a tumultuous time period.' -- Historical Novels Review