Touchstone Books, Paperback, 9781451626865, 409pp.
Publication Date: September 4, 2012
Joanna Stafford, a Dominican nun, learns that her favorite cousin has been condemned by Henry VIII to be burned at the stake. Defying the rule of enclosure, Joanna leaves the priory to stand at her cousin's side. Arrested for interfering with the king's justice, Joanna, along with her father, is sent to the Tower of London.
While Joanna is in the Tower, the ruthless Bishop of Winchester forces her to spy for him: to save her father's life she must find an ancient relic--a crown so powerful, it may possess the ability to end the Reformation.
With Cromwell's troops threatening to shutter her priory, bright and bold Joanna must decide who she can trust so that she may save herself, her family, and her sacred way of life. This provocative story melds heart-stopping suspense with historical detail and brings to life the poignant dramas of women and men at a fascinating and critical moment in England's past.
“An engrossing thriller…[the] extensive historical research shines.” – Entertainment Weekly
“Part The Da Vinci Code, part The Other Boleyn Girl, it will keep you guessing until the very end!” – Woman’s Day, Book Pick of the Month
“Bilyeau deftly weaves extensive historical research throughout, but the real draw of this suspenseful novel is its juicy blend of lust, murder, conspiracy, and betrayal.” – O, The Oprah Magazine
“[An] inventive thriller…A captivating heroine, Stafford will have you eagerly following every step of her quest.” – Parade
“[A] captivating thriller.” – All You
“The right sort of action to lure fans of historical fiction: righteous nuns, evil bishops, real-world figures and a potential burning at the stake.” – Time Out New York
“When her cousin is condemned to death by King Henry VIII, daring young nun Joanna risks everything to be by her side.” – People Magazine
“History buffs will delight in the details interwoven in the story.” – Times Record News
“I’m loving ‘The Crown.’” – Redbook
“Bilyeau weaves her breathtaking story though a string of events to a pleasing conclusion while giving the reader a more thorough understanding of a complicated bit of history. Historical fiction as it should be.” – Florida Times-Union