The Death of a Falcon: A Muirteach MacPhee Mystery
by Susan McDuffie
Publication Date: March 2, 2018
eBook & Paperback; 310 Pages
Genre: Historical Mystery
Series: Muirteach MacPhee Mystery, Book 4
Scotland, 1375: Muirteach MacPhee and his wife Mariota visit Edinburgh Castle, assisting the Lord of the Isles in his negotiations with King Robert II. A trading vessel arrives at the nearby port of Leith from the far away Norse settlement in Greenland. The ship brings unexpected diversion and carries coveted wares: gyrfalcons, unicorn’s horns, and fine furs. Both King Robert and the Lord of the Isles desire the rare birds, easily worth a king’s ransom.
Muirteach and Mariota, unaccustomed to the sophistication of castle life, initially find pleasure in the heady and flirtatious glamor of the royal court. Then sudden and unexpected cruelty, followed by the senseless death of a beautiful young girl, plunge the couple into a murky sea of alliances and intrigue that stretches from Scotland across the icy western ocean to the far northern lands of the Norse, leaving trails of treachery and murder in its wake.
Praise for the Award-Winning Muirteach MacPhee Mysteries
“McDuffie brings. this period to life in such a way that the reader is transported. Her characters are rich and multi-faceted. . . the perfect blend of history, rich in historical detail, and a mysterious investigation.” -The Most Happy Reader
“A superb mystery, and historically correct in every aspect. McDuffie knows her Scottish history and this period intimately and is a powerful storyteller.” -Reading the Ages
“Well-paced and engrossing.” -Kirkus Reviews
“A good choice.” -Library Journal
“Well worth reading.” -CelticLady’s Reviews
My Review: Have you ever had someone ask you for your opinion about a book, and you get completely tongue-tied? Tongue-tied because you loved it so much that you don’t know what to talk about first?
Yeah, raising my hand and shaking it around. I have the joy of telling you about The Death of a Falcon, and I quite literally don’t know where to begin. I’m supposed to say something awesome, but all I can think to say is, “Scotland Norse Historical Fiction Mystery Writing Ancestors Plot Characters OMG OMG OMG!”
Sigh. See my problem? So, let’s try to put this into some sort of coherent sentence, shall we?
Y’all already know that I absolutely love and adore historical fiction. What you may not know is that I am also pretty crazy about mystery (as my collection of Nancy Drew books can attest to from years (and years) ago. While I’m fairly picky about historical fiction novels, I am even more so about mystery. (I would explain why, if I knew the answer.) So when I heard about The Death of a Falcon, and saw that Susan McDuffie combined historical fiction with mystery, I was so excited. And rightfully so.
Because this book is excellent.
The author managed to write an absolutely superb historical fiction set in one of my favorite time-periods, but also succeeded in adding mystery to the plot that kept me guessing until the last stinkin’ page. (Have you ever read a mystery that was the opposite of mystery?) (Me, too) (The Death of a Falcon isn’t one of those.) From the incredibly developed characters to the descriptive writing, I was hooked. (Subsequently, I am now a forever-Susan-McDuffie-fan. I need all her books. Like, yesterday.)
Get it, Friends. You won’t regret it.
About the Author
A fan of historical fiction since childhood, Susan McDuffie spent such vast amounts of time reading stories set in the past that she wondered if she had mistakenly been born in the wrong century. As an adult her discovery that Clorox was not marketed prior to 1922 reconciled her to life in this era. Susan’s childhood interest in Scotland was fueled by family stories of the McDuffie clan’s ancestral lands on Colonsay and their traditional role as “Keeper of the Records” for the Lords of the Isles. On her first visit to Scotland she hitchhiked her way through the Hebrides, and her initial visit to Colonsay and the Oronsay Priory ruins planted the seeds for her medieval mysteries. Those seeds have grown into the Muirteach MacPhee mysteries, set in medieval Scotland during the Celtic Lordship of the Isles. The series includes A MASS FOR THE DEAD, THE FAERIE HILLS (2011 New Mexico Book Awards “Best Historical Novel”), THE STUDY OF MURDER (New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards Finalist 2014), and THE DEATH OF A FALCON. Susan frequently presents at workshops and conferences and regularly reviews historical fiction books for the Historical Novel Society’s “Historical Novels Review.
Susan lives in New Mexico and shares her life with a Native American artist and four cosseted cats. She enjoys taking flamenco dance classes in her spare time. Susan loves to hear from readers and can be contacted via Facebook or through her website.
Blog Tour Schedule
Monday, April 16
Excerpt at Teaser Addicts Book Blog
Wednesday, April 18
Excerpt at What Is That Book About
Friday, April 20
Interview at Passages to the Past
Wednesday, April 25
Feature at Maiden of the Pages
Saturday, April 28
Excerpt at Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen
Monday, April 30
Guest Post at Let Them Read Books
Tuesday, May 1
Review at Bibliophile Reviews
Thursday, May 3
Review at Donna’s Book Blog
Monday, May 7
Interview at Reading the Past
Tuesday, May 8
Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit
During the Blog Tour we will be giving away 5 paperback copies & 5 eBooks of The Death of a Falcon! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.
– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on May 11th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open to US residents only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.