An absolute triumph from start to finish. I can't begin to describe effectively how this book made me feel. Such a whirlwind of emotions. Grounded in harsh, morbid reality, steeped with mystery, romance and intrigue its a perfect read. I couldn't put this down and stayed up into the wee hours finishing this book totally gripped, actually shouting at it. The book is beautifully written and realised with great characters. One of the good things about it (though may not be for some) is how frustrated I felt with the characters at the end, what they did and how they acted. But it was never out of character and this stirred a strong emotional reaction, was thought-provoking and realistic. Good qualities in a book if you ask me! I will definatley be re-reading this and also seeking out C.J. Sansom's other work.