Kirkus Review for A Conspiracy of Wolves

I’m back from the UK and working on a post about my adventures in York, Leeds, Pontefract, and London. But first I want to alert you to the news that the English language ebook of A Conspiracy of Wolves is now available worldwide!

And I want to share with you a wonderful review from Kirkus Reviews for A Conspiracy of Wolves that will appear in their mid June issue:
“A man with a deep sense of justice and a passion for crime-solving must make a series of life-changing decisions.

“The year 1374 finds Owen Archer, former captain of the guard (A Vigil of Spies, 2015, etc.), still mourning the death of Archbishop Thoresby as he returns to York with his apothecary wife, Lucie Wilton; their family; and Geoffrey Chaucer, a spy for Prince Edward. Upon the road they meet Bartolf Swann, coroner of Galtres Forest, and Brother Michaelo, who was Thoresby’s secretary. Swann begs them to find the killer of Hobana conspiracy of wolves rgb final small, the son he claims was savaged by dogs or wolves. Hoban’s own dogs and horse are missing, and when Owen examines his body, he finds that although Hoban was indeed bitten, someone had cut his throat as well. Back in York, Owen is torn between the mayor, the aldermen, and merchants who want him to become captain of the city bailiffs and a more generous offer from Prince Edward, who’s invited him to become a member of his household so that he can keep an eye on the powerful northern families who are enemies of the throne. While Owen ponders his choices, he seeks information from several people and comes to suspect that Alisoun Ffulford, apprentice to Magda Digby, midwife, healer, and wise woman, is holding something back. Soon after a mysterious man with a large dog is spotted in the city, Bartolf Swann is found murdered. Owen becomes convinced that the Swann, Tirwhit, and Braithwaite families are all connected not only by marriage, but by a dangerous secret from the past that may provide the motive for the murders in the present. Real-life historical figures mix with fictional characters in a portrait of a deeply dangerous time that Owen must navigate with care if he’s to solve the murders and settle his own future.

“History and mystery combine in a fine, complex tale of love and hate.”

I’ll take that!

And just an FYI, at the time of writing this (Monday, 3 June), the US publisher of the firstThe Apothecary Rose (Small) 300p 10 Owen Archers, Diversion Books, has a sale on 5 of the earlier Owen Archer ebooks: The Apothecary Rose, The Lady Chapel, The King’s Bishop, The Riddle of St. Leonard’s, and A Gift of Sanctuary are $1.99 on all platforms!

(Why they skipped The Nun’s Tale is a mystery to me. But some of the Margaret Kerrs are on sale as well!)


7 Comments on “Kirkus Review for A Conspiracy of Wolves

  1. Sorry I never responded to this, Bob. It just popped up in the comments today. I cannot fathom what went wrong. I do recall that I didn’t provide links because I would have needed to link to far too many–all US e-book platforms for those titles were part of the sale. I should have made that clear.

    I hope you are safe and well!


    • Candace,

      We are well, and Spomenka has begun to see clients again, but with masks. Her main clients are children for whom she is doing intelligence testing—one client per week, so that simplifies things quite a bit.

      I may have mentioned before that I am not an ebook fan. I have a few trade editions of Owen Archer that I would like to replace when I find them at a reasonable price. While waiting for #12 I went back and read a half dozen to keep my mind active (I celebrated 80 years last Michaelmas). After that I picked up Chris Nickson’s books for a second read (I seem to need multiple reads these days). Why are there so many typos in books nowadays? And not only typos—in The Crooked Spire Richard de Harville is introduced on page 23 and then later he is re referred to as Robert de Harville, when Robert is the monk’s name? Once he is called de Havrille. Do authors get one last chance to read their book before publication? Your copy editors have been quite good to you.

      What is the status of #12? Will it be offered in hardback or just trade paper? What’s the expected date? I’m waiting expectantly.


      Bob Newman



  2. Bob, it’s so good to hear from you and that you and Spomenka are doing well. Book 12 will be out in the US on 2 July, in hardcover and ebook, then later in trade paperback, just as book 11 was. I am glad that Severn House moved publication day forward rather than back, which has happened to many authors. (BP (before pandemic) it was scheduled for early October in the US. Rejoice! As for the typos, I notice them in so many books as well. My copy editors and proofreaders have been as good to me as they are to other–I happen to be obsessive about editing my own manuscripts because I once did that for scientific papers in my previous career as an editor–I did everything from rewriting for clarity to copyediting to proofreading. Possibly why I never manage to produce more than 1 book a year? Warmly, Candace


  3. Thanks for your response, Candace. I wrote a few scientific papers while working on my dissertation, then edited both of Spomenka’s dissertations, and now edit reports, so I suppose I am hypercritical.

    I suspect that your “one book a year” maintains the high quality of your output; at least that’s my story and I’m sticking to it. I still wish a producer would come along and see the value of an “Owen Archer video series”.


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