A Cruel Necessity

by L. C. Tyler

Part of the A John Grey Historical Mystery Series

Action / Adventure / Spy / Espionage Crime / Mystery eBooks of the Month Historical Fiction

LoveReading View on A Cruel Necessity

Len Tyler has, until now, been best known for his humorous Ethelred and Elsie series, in which a mid-list crime writer and his intrepid agent solved perky crimes with aplomb. This, however, is another kettle of fish, the debut volume in an ambitious historical series, featuring John Grey, a young lawyer with few clients at the time of Oliver Cromwell and Charles Stuart. Painstaking research gives the proceedings a strong patina of credibility and the main character, a man with a mission to defend the truth in a period of plots and counterplots involving the wrath of John Thurloe, Cromwell's spy master and the corpse of a Royalist spy found in an Essex village, proves engaging and sympathetic. From the success of Hilary Mantel's novels, we know the fascination the period exerts on readers; Tyler might well have found a new criminal milieu. ~

Maxim Jakubowski

A Cruel Necessity Synopsis

The theatres are padlocked. Christmas has been cancelled. It is 1657 and the unloved English Republic is eight years old. Though Cromwell's joyless grip on power appears immovable, many still look to Charles Stuart's dissolute and threadbare court-in-exile, and some are prepared to risk their lives plotting a restoration. For the officers of the Republic, constant vigilance is needed. So, when the bloody corpse of a Royalist spy is discovered on the dung heap of a small Essex village, why is the local magistrate so reluctant to investigate? John Grey, a young lawyer with no clients, finds himself alone in believing that the murdered man deserves justice. Grey is drawn into a vortex of plot and counter-plot and into the all-encompassing web of intrigue spun by Cromwell's own spy-master, John Thurloe. So when nothing is what is seems, can Grey trust anyone?

The Good Book Guide Review

Trainee lawyer John Grey is a man with a conscience in Puritan England where Cromwell’s grip has ensured the criminalisation of Christmas and anything even mildly enjoyable. When a Royalist spy’s body is found, and the authorities predictably remain unmoved, Grey sets about solving the mystery himself and bringing the murderer to justice with little thought for his own safety. This is the age before forensics and Holmesian deductions, but John Grey is nothing if not intrepid, and he refuses to be warned off. Tyler writes with wit and a touching warmth, and the ending to his story is a cracker.

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781472115041
Publication date: 07/05/2015
Publisher: Constable an imprint of Little, Brown Book Group
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9781472115034
Publication date: 06/11/2014
Publisher: Constable an imprint of Little, Brown Book Group
Format: Hardback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781472115041
Publication date: 7th May 2015
Author: L. C. Tyler
Publisher: Constable an imprint of Little, Brown Book Group
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 320 pages
Genres: Action Adventure / Spy, Crime / Mystery, eBook Favourites, Historical Fiction,
Categories: Crime & mystery,

About L. C. Tyler

L C Tyler was raised in Essex and studied geography at Oxford. He has worked for the British Council in Malaysia, Sudan, Thailand and Denmark, before turning to full time writing.

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