Short Story Review: A Sad and Bloody Hour by Joe Gores

A Sad and Bloody Hour is an interesting and clever detective mystery set in Elizabethan London, centred around the death of poet and playwright Christopher Marlowe.

A friend of Christopher ‘Kit’ Marlowe (whose identity remains hidden until the very end of the book) is visited by a woman, Anne Page, who claims that their mutual friend did not die the year before from plague.  He was in fact murdered, and the deed covered up by Marlowe’s well-connected patron, Thomas Walsingham.

Anne Page challenges the man that if he truly was a friend of Kit he must search out the truth behind his untimely demise.  Of course, he takes up this challenge and investigates the mysterious circumstances around his friend’s death.

Does this man, who becomes one of the most famous men in history, get to the bottom of Christopher Marlowe’s murder?  And can his desire for revenge be brought under control before it consumes him?

I came across this short story in The Mammoth Book of Historical Whodunnits, ed. Mike Ashley.


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