INTO THE FIRE by MANDA SCOTT.
AMAZON.CO.UK BLURB: February 2014: Police Captaine Inés Picaut is called out to investigate a blaze in the old town of Orléans. This is the fourth in a series of increasingly brutal arson attacks, and at the centre of the conflagration lies a body. An Islamic extremist faction claims responsibility, but Inés and her team cannot trace its whereabouts, or any evidence of its existence. And a partly melted memory card found in the victim's throat is the only clue to his identity.
September 1429: Joan of Arc is in the process of turning the tide of the Hundred Years' War. English troops have Orléans under siege, and Thomas Rustbeard, the Duke of Bedford's most accomplished agent, finally has her in his sights. But he knows that killing 'The Maid' - the apparently illiterate peasant girl who nonetheless has an unmatched sense of military strategy and can ride a warhorse in battle - is not enough. He must destroy the legend that has already grown up around her. And to do that, he must get close enough to discover who she really is.
- An abridged synopsis, please click on book title to view whole.
FIRST SENTENCE/MEMORABLE MOMENT: An Uncorrected Proof Copy I'm unable to share these.
MY THOUGHTS: Ooh, crime AND historical fiction with an actual individual at its heart, two of my favourite genres.
Not sure how the merging of events set in the present day and the fifteenth century would combine and half expecting a disjointed narrative as is so often the case with these duel timeline novels I was pleasantly surprised as to how well Into The Fire actually flowed.
Two books for the price of one as it were. Both gritty in their own way. Both set in the same French city. Both their 'leading ladies' saviours of a sort. Both elements of the book a good read in their own right, together, something a bit different. I had expected to find myself totally carried away by the story of 'The Maid', narrated by the spy of an English Duke, instead of which, the past mirrored in the present, 'The Maid's' patriotism hi-jacked for political purposes, I found myself riveted by the events in modern day Orléans.