Camelot, a disfigured seller of ancient relics
Rodrigo and Jofre, 2 Musicians from Italy
Zophiel, a sideshow keeper and conjuror
Osmond and Adela, a couple expecting their first child
Cygnus, a storyteller
Pleasance, a healer
Narigorm, a 12 year old reader of runes
It's 1348 and the plague is ravaging England. This group of outcasts and misfits form an uneasy alliance as they travel across the country trying to keep one step ahead of the Pestilence. But as they travel the secrets and lies that they rely on to survive begin to haunt each of them in terrible ways.
I stayed up until 2.30 this morning so I could finish this book. According to my proof copy it's 'Michael Joseph's Biggest Launch of 2008', and I can see why. It's a wonderfully told story which makes you feel like the other member of this motley crew. It's well researched and I love the way that it dips into fairy tale and folk-lore and at the same time engages you in the horrible reality of their situation.
I think it's out next week and it's a shame it's a hardback. But at £12.99 in most good independents, and some bad ones as well I'd give it 8 and a half seeping boils out of 10.