As Lord Chamberlain, John spent his days counseling Emperor Justinian while passing the small hours of night in conversation with the solemn-eyed little girl depicted in a mosaic on his study wall. He never expected to meet her in a public square-or afterwards, to find her red-dyed corpse in a subterranean cistern. Had the mysterious woman truly been the model for the mosaic years before, as she claimed? Who was she? Who wanted her dead and why? The answers seem to lie among the denizens of the smoky streets of that quarter of Constantinople known as the Copper Market, where artisans, beggars, prostitutes, pillar saints, and exiled aristocrats struggle to survive within sight of the Great Palace and yet worlds distant. Before long, John suspects he is attempting to unravel not just a murder but also a plot against the empire.
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by Mary Reed, Eric Mayer
by Rennie Airth
by Laura Joh Rowland
by Eric McCormack
by Francis Duncan
by Jessica Ellicott
by Laurie R. King
"In the authors' John the Eunuch series, the main character is lord chamberlain to the emperor Justinian in sixth-century Byzantium. In this seventh installment John becomes obsessed with a woman who claims to have been the model for a girl in a mural that graces the courtier's walls. Later he finds the woman beaten to death. The resulting plot line is truly byzantine. Narrator James Adams sounds mildly bored as he delivers this convoluted story, but he does a fine job delineating characters, including women as diverse as an elderly nurse, an actress, and a royal pretender. The plotting is clever and the climax dramatic. Historical mystery lovers will welcome this investigator to the roster of able historic sleuths. D.L.G. (c) AudioFile 2008, Portland, Maine"
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