No Good Stede Goes Unpunished by Eddie Jones

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1600s – Caribbean

At the conclusion of a seminar on, “Trances and Visions: Exploring the Out-of-Body Experience,” the wealthy daughter of a prominent physician approaches Ricky with an offer. “If my father could fix things so your mother would receive the best cancer treatment for free, would you go back in time to clear my ancestor’s good name?”

Ricky explains that he can’t simply will himself to have an episode and take a time-travel trip. “Absence seizures don’t work that way. Even if I could go back, I can’t control when and where I end up.” But Ricky also knows there have been instances where someone claimed they slipped into a trance and saw past and future events. John, the Apostle of Christ. Saul/Paul, also an Apostle of Christ. Joseph Smith, founder of the Latter-day Saints. Black American slave Nat Turner who led the only effective, sustained slave rebellion. “They saw things, yes,” Ricky says to the rich girl, “but didn’t change what happened in the past.”

Then, for the third time since last Christmas, Ricky experiences a short period of “blanking out,” of staring into and sailing through space and time. Moments later Ricky finds himself in pirate land with Stede Bonnet, a rich sugar plantation owner who thought becoming a pirate might be a fun way to live out the rest of his life. And for Bonnet it was a Yabba Dabba Doo good time right up until the moment Ricky stepped aboard the Revenge. Set sail from Barbados with Bonnet’s crew as they slant west towards the North American coast, and run afoul of the British Royal Navy, the good citizens of Charleston, and Blackbeard the pirate. Will Ricky swing by the neck or die on the deck?

Fawkes by Nadine Brandes

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1604 – England

Thomas Fawkes is turning to stone, and the only cure to the Stone Plague is to join his father’s plot to assassinate the king of England.

Silent wars leave the most carnage. The wars that are never declared but are carried out in dark alleys with masks and hidden knives. Wars where color power alters the natural rhythm of 17th-century London. And when the king calls for peace, no one listens until he finally calls for death.

But what if death finds him first?

Keepers think the Igniters caused the plague. Igniters think the Keepers did it. But all Thomas knows is that the Stone Plague infecting his eye is spreading. And if he doesn’t do something soon, he’ll be a lifeless statue. So when his Keeper father, Guy Fawkes, invites him to join the Gunpowder Plot—claiming it will put an end to the plague—Thomas is in.

The plan: use 36 barrels of gunpowder to blow up the Igniter King.

The problem: Doing so will destroy the family of the girl Thomas loves. But backing out of the plot will send his father and the other plotters to the gallows. To save one, Thomas will lose the other.

No matter Thomas’s choice, one thing is clear: once the decision is made and the color masks have been put on, there’s no turning back.

Written on Silk by Linda Chaikin

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1600s – France

A royal wedding masks the unfolding of Catherine de Medici’s murderous plot against the Huguenots. Will any of the Huguenot princes survive? Life and death rest with two people … Rachelle Dushane-Macquinet, couturiere from a celebrated silk-making family, has come back to the Louvre Palais to create the royal wedding gown. Recruited into the evil Queen Mother’s ring of women spies, she must use her wits to preserve her honor—and the lives of her fellow Huguenots. Marquis Fabien de Vendome has also returned from a buccaneering venture against Spain. The Queen Mother plans to implicate him in an assassination. But Fabien has designs of his own. A man and a woman caught up in history’s deadly swirl and love’s uncertainties seek to escape the venom of Madame le Serpent. Faith in Christ must uphold them, and all who stand alone, in a city gone diabolically mad.

Glastonbury Tor by LeAnne Hardy

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1538 – England

The ancient olivewood drinking bowl that young Colin finds in the treasury of Glastonbury Abbey, was disregarded as worthless wood by King Henry VIII’s men when they inventoried the abbey’s treasures. But Father Dunstan, the tortured prior who preaches forgiveness, treasures it. Father Bede, as demanding as the hated father from whom Colin has fled, covets it. Abbot Whiting finds in it the courage to face his enemy, even as monasteries are being dismantled all over sixteenth century England. Will Colin find the personal faith and sense of worth he seeks? Can he ever forgive his father… or himself?

Daughter of Silk by Linda Chaikin

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1600s – France

Pursuing the family name as the finest silk producer in Lyon, the young Huguenot Rachelle Dushane-Macquinet is thrilled to accompany her famous couturier Grandmere to Paris, there to create a silk trousseau for the Royal Princess Marguerite Valois. The Court is magnificent; its regent, Catherine de Medici, deceptively charming … and the circumstances, darker than Rachelle could possibly imagine. At a time in history when the tortures of the Bastille and the fiery stake are an almost casual consequence in France, a scourge of recrimination is moving fast and furious against the Huguenots—and as the Queen Mother’s political intrigues weave a web of deception around her, Rachelle finds herself in imminent danger. Hope rests in warning the handsome Marquis Fabien de Vendome of the wicked plot against his kin. But to do so, Rachelle must follow a perilous course.