Short Story Review: A Matter of Flesh and Blood by Gavin Newman

This fast-paced tale is set at the turn of the 17th century.  A number of babies have been stolen over a period of six months and, naturally, witches and satanist are suspected to be lurking somewhere in Warwickshire.

From London a despised witchfinder is dispatched, and a woman is hanged. However, it is generally accepted that the woman was innocent.  Then the witchfinder himself goes missing, suspected murdered at the same hands of those who were involved in the cannibalistic murder of the infants.

Guy Kent is sent to find the witchfinder’s murderer in the hope that it will prevent the arrival of a more brutal witchfinder, accompanied by soldiers, who no doubt would torment the innocent population of the county.

The historical detail is colourful and the characters believable.  A thoroughly enjoyable short story.

This short story can be found in Murder Through the Ages: A Bumper Anthology of Historical Mysteries, ed. Maxim Jakubowski


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