Book Thoughts: The Rufus Spy (Alys Clare)


Title: Aelf Fen #8 – The Rufus Spy
Author: Alys Clare
Genre: Fiction /Historical Fiction /Mystery    Pages: 240
First published: to be published on 1 February 2018 by Severn House Publishers
Edition: ARC e-book courtesy of NetGalley and the publisher

October, 1093. Two young men have been brutally beaten to death; a third viciously attacked. All three men are of similar appearance. But could there be another connection?

Lassair meanwhile has agreed to accompany her former lover Rollo on a perilous journey north in search of King William. On their trail is a skilled, relentless and ruthless assassin. Who is he ? and why has he targeted Rollo? If they are to survive, the hunted must become the hunters: Rollo and Lassair must lure their pursuer to the treacherous fenland terrain Lassair knows so well and turn the tables on their would-be killer.

I love historical fiction and even better if it is a mystery set in medieval England. I love reading tales set in that time period. What I did not realise was that this was an eighth book in a series. Although it worked fine as a standalone, I did feel I missed a chunk of background information on a number of the characters which would have improved my reading experience.

As it is, I enjoyed the book. Lassair, a young woman and healer, is the main character and I liked her a lot. I understood her, which is always a great advantage when connecting with a character through the pages. The book is partly written in first-person when it is Lassair’s narrative and part third-person when it is written from other POVs. I kind of like this technique and it works very well here.

I loved the atmosphere the author managed to create and overall The Rufus Spy is a well-crafted novel that pulled me in and kept me reading. I will be keeping an eye out for the previous books in the series.

5 out of 7 stars

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