Get an exclusive free story about Carey when he was a boy. Click here!Exclusive free story about Robert Carey, aged eight

"From opening line to bottom line, the felicity of the language leads us through a neatly dovetailed plot that ranges from high comedy to genuine pathos, but never loses its sense of engagement -- because it's dealing with characters who are Real People."

Diana Gabaldon

Carey is summoned to London by his father, Lord Hunsdon, where he emphatically does not want to go. His father wants him to find his elder brother who has disappeared. This embroils Carey in a toxic brew of Catholics, courtiers and players, including the well-known spy, Christopher Marlowe and a lovesick scribbler with no future called Will Shakespeare.

A Plague of Angels Poisoned Pen Press Kobo

In 1592, the dashing courtier Sir Robert Carey took up his northern post as Deputy Warden of the West March in order to escape the complications of creditors and court life. Trouble, however, dogs his heels wherever he goes. And where he goes in autumn, after various misadventures in the North, is back to London on a summons from his father.

Carey is on difficult terms with his powerful sire, Henry, Lord Hunsdon. Hunsdon, son of Anne Boleyn’s elder sister, Mary – and probably of a young King Henry VIII – swings a lot of weight as “cousin” to Queen Elizabeth. But Hunsdon needs his ingenious younger son to sort out the problems his elder son has got himself into as an innocent party in a plot to discredit the family.

Accompanied by the shrewd Sergeant Dodd, who’s like a fish out of water as he copes with the Londoners, Carey tackles Catholics, treachery, and such persons known to history and students of literature as George Greene and Christopher Marlowe, both working as spies and double agents. And what of that miserable lovesick scribbler, Will Shakespeare?

A Plague of Angels Poisoned Pen Press Kobo