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The Canterbury Papers by Judith K. Healy

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Review Excerpts

Detroit Free Press – January 11, 2004
“Alais might be a minor figure in the history books, but Judith Koll Healey imagines her as a star -- and a worthy foil to Eleanor -- in her assured and wholly entertaining suspense novel, The Canterbury Papers… The success of a historical suspense-romance novel like this is almost entirely in the style of the prose, which can easily run breathless and cloying. Healey manages to keep Alais and her perils believable and the romance between Alais and William mature. The Canterbury Papers is the medieval reimagining you wish you could have read in school.”
-- Marta Salij

Minneapolis Star Tribune – December 21, 2003
“A mystery well-steeped in history… Princess Alaïs Capet, sister to the King of France, is the loveable, middle-aged protagonist of this medieval tale of intrigue and betrayal… Creating an authentic setting is this author's strong suit, and using characters plucked straight from the pages of history lends the story additional plausibility. Koll Healey has clearly done her research on this bloody era... An absorbing plot line... [and] a suspenseful finish as satisfying for readers as it is for the unusual Princess Alaïs.”
-- Andrea Hoag

Booklist – November 15, 2003
“Debut novelist Healey brings medieval history to life in magnificent fashion as she adds a new twist to an old legend… Alaïs must unravel an intricately tangled web of family intrigue and deception that could lead either to a reunion with her lost son or to her own destruction. Plagued by infidelity and mistrust, petty jealously and political rivalry, the infamously dysfunctional Plantagenets plot and scheme against one another in this electrifying journey into the past.”

Library Journal Review – November 15, 2003
“In this well-plotted debut, Princess Alais Capet is the heroine – and a delightful one at that… brave, outspoken, and passionate... There are details aplenty of medieval life and lore, but the place moves at the breakneck speed as Alais travels from France to England and back again on the trial of what becomes an evermore complex mystery involving the crown of England. This will appeal both to fans of historical fiction and medieval/Renaissance mystery series... Highly recommended for all public libraries.”

Publishers Weekly – November 10, 2003
“This engaging medieval suspense debut is alternately playful and sober in its exploration of the power maneuvers and backstabbing of the royal families of England and France. Healey's well-researched historical drama – many of the characters and circumstances are based on real-life models – delights in poking fun at the stuffiness and misbehavior that characterized the royal families of the time. The pace may be a little too leisurely for some readers, but Alais's tart, wry perspective makes this age-old story fresh and absorbing.”

Mysterious Women – November 2003
“This delightful book takes place in 1200 A.D. England and France… The mysteries in this book, which I could hardly put down and even had to re-read include: 1) did the child survive and where is he now? 2) what happened to the Becket letters? 3) who and what is William? There is romance, intrigue, and lots of movement from one place to another, often in a hurry. The book will be out December 23rd and definitely one to look for and put on your holiday want list.”

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