Thursday, 21 January 2010

Review:- Alis HAWKINS – “Testament”

Year Published: - 2008
Where the book was from:- Pensby Library
ISBN: - 978-0-230-70638-5
Pages: - 568pp
Genre: - Historical mystery
Location:- Salster - a fictional S English town.
How I came across it: - On the new book shelf in library
Rating: - ***** ***
One sentence summary:- A historical mystery that brings the mystery forward to the present day.

Describe the plot without giving anything away:-

In the 14th century master mason Simon of Kinnerton is preparing plans for his magnum opus, a college to rival anything in England. His work only interrupted when he becomes father to the son he has longed for for twenty years. Six hundred years later Damia Miller is employed to promote revered Kinnerton and Dacre college. It doesn't take her long to recognise that a grotesque antique painting recently uncovered on one of the college's walls might hold the key to the college's financial future. Damia grows increasingly obsessed with the mysterious wall-painting and the college's dark history. What is the painting trying to tell her? Why was the college named after its mason as well as its founder? And who does the statue of the  boy in the Toby Yard represent? In mediaeval Salster, Simon of Kinnerton is struggling to come to terms with the fact that his son is  ‘cursed’ in the eyes of many of Salster's townspeople. But just as Simon himself is coming to accept young Toby a tragedy occurs whose repercussions will echo until the present day.

General comments:-

An excellent first novel but I have to confess I am beginning to tire of books that flit backwards and forwards between centuries.

AUTHOR Notes:-
Brought up in west Wales, Alis Hawkins read English at Oxford before training as a speech and language therapist. She lives in Canterbury with her partner and teenage sons.

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