For me, this is Alexandra Walsh’s best book yet, with strong echoes between the historical and present day timelines. The history is impeccably researched, bringing an entirely new angle to The Gunpowder Plot, and how it might have played out for the women behind the scenes.

In 1605, Bess Throckmorton, wife of Sir Walter Raleigh, must protect her family from the traitorous intentions of her Catholic cousins. Her own husband languishes in the Tower of London, yet enemies at court would still seek to implicate him. Somehow Bess, through the plotters’ wives, must either make the men see sense, or stop them.

In the present day newly divorced Isabella and her daughter Emily come to live at Crestwell Hall, a beautiful Jacobean manor house in Wiltshire with rumoured connections to the Gunpowder Plotters. Isabella needs to find out whether they are true to secure the Hall’s, and her family’s, future. While in the background a terrifying modern day threat to democracy lurks.