Welcome to THE COLOUR OF BONE, the eleventh novel in the popular Seb Foxley series by Toni Mount, set in fifteenth century London.
It’s May 1480 in the City of London.
When workmen discover the body of a nun in a newly-opened tomb, Seb Foxley, a talented artist and bookseller is persuaded to assist in solving the mystery of her death when a member of the Duke of Gloucester’s household meets an untimely end. Evil is again abroad the crowded, grimy streets of medieval London and even in the grandest of royal mansions.
Some wicked rogue is setting fires in the city and no house is safe from the hungry flames. Will Seb and his loved ones come to grief when a man returns from the dead and Seb has to appear before the Lord Mayor?
Join our hero as he feasts with royalty yet struggles to save his own business and attempts to unravel this latest series of medieval mysteries.
The Charnel House, St Paul’s Cathedral in the City of London
My goodwife believes I be quite mad to wish to spend time in such a dismal place as this.
‘Who would want to pass time willingly with the remains of our ancestors long dead?’ she asked when I informed her of my intentions. ‘Why do you crave the company of their empty skulls and crumbling limbs?’
‘Though my art does not demand it, the knowledge I acquire there will aid me in my portraiture,’ I explained. ‘Understanding the shape and underlying form and structure of the skeleton will make my representations of the living of more substance and, well, more lifelike.’
I realised that argument sounded perverse, if not absurd, but it happens to be true.
Thus, upon most Saturday afternoons of late, when the shop closes for the half day, you will find me in St Paul’s Charnel House, with the permission of the Dean and Chapter, of course. Here I sit in this chill, heartless ossuary with chalks and charcoal, drawing scores of images for future reference, surrounded by a thousand hollow-eyed skulls. Silent they may be, yet they have much to say and teach me.
I see that the skeletal forms of men and women be different in ways other than simply height and sturdiness and that there be every degree in between, from the daintiest female to the burliest male. I learn to know and recognise the signs of age upon teeth and joint, the lesions left by injury or long sickness. Even years of abiding in poverty leave their mark. The forgotten citizens of London each have a story to tell.
And so I work to my great profit, garnering new knowledge here amongst the dead, where the very dust itself is the colour of bone.
About the author
Toni Mount is a best-selling author of medieval non-fiction books. She is the creator of the Sebastian Foxley series of medieval murder mysteries and her work focuses on the ordinary lives of fascinating characters from history. She has a first class honours degree from the Open University and a Master degree by research from the University of Kent however her first career was as a scientist which brings an added dimension to her writing. Her detailed knowledge of the medieval period helps her create believable characters and realistic settings based on years of detailed study.
For more information visit Toni’s website at www.tonimount.com. The Colour of Bone, along with the previous Seb Foxley novels, are available on Amazon in both Kindle and paperback.