The Divine Sacrifice receives a starred review in Publishers Weekly

The Divinie Sacrifice, Tony Hays second novel in his medieval mystery seriesreceived a starred review in the February 15th edition of Publishers Weekly.

The Divine Sacrifice Tony Hays. Forge, $24.99 (304p) ISBN 978-0-7653-1946-3

Hays’s brilliant second mystery set in fifth-century Britain delivers on the promise of its predecessor, The Killing Way (2009). Much of the novel’s strength derives from its complex lead, Malgwyn ap Cuneglas, a soldier who lost a limb in combat and is now a trusted counselor to Arthur, “the High King of all Britannia.” When a monk, Brother Elafius, dies in mysterious circumstances, the abbot calls for Malgwyn, who has previously displayed a talent for detection, to investigate. Malgwyn can’t immediately identify the cause of death, but eventually finds evidence that Elafius’s neck was broken. A theological struggle centered on the Pelagian heresy (i.e., that man can achieve eternal life through good works alone) as well as threats to Arthur’s rule cloud the inquiry. Hays does a superb job of making the legendary king a convincing historical figure. Already, this series rivals the work of such proven masters of the subgenre as Steven Saylor and Laura Joh Rowland. (Apr.)