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Extended Audio Sample Heartstone: A Matthew Shardlake Mystery, by C. J. Sansom Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (3,311 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: C. J. Sansom Narrator: Steven Crossley Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Shardlake Series Release Date:
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The clever plotting and brilliantly evoked world of Heartstone—the fifth Matthew Shardlake mystery from bestselling author C. J. Sansom—will dazzle both mystery fans and Tudor history buffs.

Summer, 1545. England is at war, and Matthew Shardlake is about to encounter the most politically dangerous case of his career. While a massive French fleet prepares to attack, every able-bodied man is being pressed into military service. Meanwhile, an old servant of Queen Catherine Parr asks Shardlake to investigate claims of “monstrous wrongs” committed against a young ward of the court. Shardlake’s inquiries take him and his loyal assistant, Jack Barak, to Hoyland Priory and Portsmouth, where the English fleet is gathering. There they uncover a startling link between the ward and a woman incarcerated in Bedlam.

With a fantastic backdrop of wartime intrigue and a dramatic finale onboard one of Henry VIII’s great warships, Heartstone is certain to catapult this internationally bestselling series to greater prominence.

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Quotes & Awards

  • Heartstone may be the best novel in this richly entertaining and reassuringly scholarly series…With his customary grace, Sansom places Shardlake’s rousing fictional adventures into an authentic historical context…History never seemed so real.”

    New York Times

  • “[This] exceptional, knock-your-socks-off…novel has it all: an ingenious plot, ceaseless suspense, villains galore, tipsy priests, a bull-baiting, a stag hunt, several murders, the horrors of war, a brooding sense of evil, and a glittering portrait of a fascinating age.”

    Washington Post

  • “A rousing good read.”

    Seattle Post-Intelligencer

  • “Murder, mystery, and turbulent history are expertly twisted together in Sansom’s fifth Tudor crime novel.”

    Sunday Times (London)

  • “The pace and tension hot up splendidly as Shardlake’s inquiries take him to the Hampshire home of a family with a great deal to hide. A wholly unexpected twist takes us to a superb denouement...terrific stuff, for both fans and newcomers to the series.”

    Guardian (London)

  • “Sansom’s attention to detail is rightly praised...Yet it is the rich characterization that really brings this series to life, none more so than Shardlake himself, a beguiling hero.”

    Financial Times

  • “Few contemporary authors are as adept as Sansom at blending a whodunit with a sweeping historical epic...Strong prose makes Tudor England instantly accessible, and the clockwork plotting sustains deep interest throughout.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “[Steven] Crossley’s masterful ability to combine speech patterns and dialects with a striking range of emotion ignites the listening experience.”


  • “Enjoyable for mystery, thriller, and historical fiction readers, this is also recommended to fans of all things Tudor.”

    Library Journal

  • A USA Today Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Tracys | 2/18/2014

    " The latest in the Shardlake series doesn't disappoint, either in mystery story terms or in Sansom's fabulous descriptions of Tudor England. If you've enjoyed the other books, you're pretty much guaranteed to like this one too. If you haven't yet read any of the series - shame on you. Get yourself down to your nearest bookshop, pick up Dissolution now and begin your journey through Shardlake's murky world. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Nicola Mcnee | 2/11/2014

    " The best in the Shardlake series so far. Lots about Warfare Hhenry VIII's time and atmospheric description nof Portsmount harbour with teh Mary Rose. Loved it! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Methanie | 1/19/2014

    " Another entertaining read in the Matthew Shardlake series. I have to admit, I got a little bored at the end and tired of all of the horseback riding to and fro that poor Matthew had to undertake. But ultimately, the mysteries were good and held my interest. I'll keep reading this series. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Elaine | 1/18/2014

    " I think this may be the last in the Matthew Shardlake series by Sansom. I've really enjoyed his books as he really brings alive the Tudor period as well as writing a really riveting mystery/thriller. He is a great storyteller and keeps you guessing to the end...nothing predictable about this author. I will miss Matthew and Barak and all their adventures!!! "

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