Set in Elizabethan England, The Scar-Crow Men is a new take on the plague, and the political turmoil of the age.
I have to admit that it took a few chapters for me to really get into this book. The characters were fine but the story itself seemed to take a bit to really build up and grab me. That being said once I got into the story I had a hard time putting it down.
My favorite character in The Scar-Crow Men has definitely got to be Meg. Her tenacity and fire are a great counter to the cool and collected Swyfte. She has a wit and passion that is endearing and frustrating at the same time.
The Scar-Crow Men is a fabulous story filled with court intrigue, murder, mayhem and just a bit of magic. I will definitely be looking for more of Mark Chadbourn’s works. And I will be eagerly awaiting the next installment in the Swords of Albion series.
The year is 1593. The London of Elizabeth I is in the terrible grip of the Black Death. As thousands die from the plague and the queen hides behind the walls of her palace, English spies are being murdered across the city. The killer's next target: Will Swyfte.
For Swyfte--adventurer, rake, scholar, and spy--this is the darkest time he has known. His mentor, the grand old spymaster Sir Francis Walsingham, is dead. The new head of the secret service is more concerned about his own advancement than defending the nation, and a rival faction at the court has established its own network of spies. Plots are everywhere, and no one can be trusted. Meanwhile, England's greatest enemy, the haunted Unseelie Court, prepares to make its move.
A dark, bloody scheme, years in the making, is about to be realized. The endgame begins on the night of the first performance of Dr. Faustus, the new play by Swyfte's close friend and fellow spy Christopher Marlowe. A devil is conjured in the middle of the crowded theater, taking the form of Will Swyfte's long-lost love, Jenny--and it has a horrifying message for him alone.
That night Marlowe is murdered, and Swyfte embarks on a personal and brutal crusade for vengeance. Friendless, with enemies on every side and a devil at his back, the spy may find that even his vaunted skills are no match for the supernatural powers arrayed against him.