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The Spoils of Avalon

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4.04  ·  Rating details ·  28 ratings  ·  14 reviews
The death of a humble clergyman in 1877 leads amateur sleuths Violet Paget and John Singer Sargent into a medieval world of saints and kings-including the legendary Arthur-as they follow a trail of relics and antiquities lost since the destruction of Glastonbury Abbey in 1539. Written in alternating chapters between the two time periods, The Spoils of Avalon creates a spar ...more
Paperback, 306 pages
Published July 31st 2014 by Sand Hill Review Press
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4.04  · 
Rating details
 ·  28 ratings  ·  14 reviews


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Stephanie
Oct 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
When The Spoils of Avalon Book Tour was presented to me the title drew my attention immediately. My first though on reading the title was, ‘Cool, ancient relics….how interesting….” Then I read the book description:

The death of a humble clergyman in 1877 leads amateur sleuths Violet Paget and John Singer Sargent into a medieval world of saints and kings—including the legendary Arthur—as they follow a trail of relics and antiquities lost since the destruction of Glastonbury Abbey in 1539. Written
...more
Stephanie
Aug 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I have read very few mysteries which have both moved me to tears and filled me with delight, but such is THE SPOILS OF AVALON, the first of a series whose sleuths are the young artist John Singer Sargent and his equally young writer and feminist friend Violet Paget. Both set off from London in 1877 where they are beginning their careers to the north of England to visit Violet’s elderly clergyman uncle in a small village. They find him dead, likely murdered, and feel the murder has something to d ...more
Alana White
Feb 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The first in a terrific new series featuring Violet Page (the writer, Vernon Lee) and portrait painter John Singer Sargent. Set in 1877 England and Glastonbury Abbey in 1539 as monasteries face changes at the hands of Henry VIII and Thomas Cromwell.
Elise Miller
Nov 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
In “The Spoils of Avalon,” author Mary F. Burns imaginatively presents the two amateur sleuths as dynamic, bright, and bantering in an endearing and sometimes hilarious way. This is the "real life" creative pair, 19th century artist John Singer Sargent and his lifelong friend, writer Violet Paget—that I came to know in Burns' novel, “Portraits of an Artist." Fiction can make you laugh, cry and fear – and so can real history! As an historian, I loved learning about events with which I was unfamil ...more
Lelia Taylor
Nov 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: full-reviews
Writing a novel in two different time periods is nothing new but doing it really well is not so easy. The Spoils of Avalon is, to my way of thinking, a prime example of doing it oh, so very well. I was intrigued when offered the chance to read and review this because I’m fond of both the Arthurian legend and its time and the Victorian period for historical fiction and historical mysteries (not to mention pure historical nonfiction). Ms. Burns not only didn’t fail me, she gave me one of the best ...more
Annette
Summary:
The death of a humble clergyman in 1877 leads amateur sleuths Violet Paget and John Singer Sargent into a medieval world of saints and kings—including the legendary Arthur—as they follow a trail of relics and antiquities lost since the destruction of Glastonbury Abbey in 1539. Written in alternating chapters between the two time periods, The Spoils of Avalon creates a sparkling, magical mystery that bridges the gap between two worlds that could hardly be more different—the industrialized
...more
Lauralee
Nov 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Spoils of Avalon is a mystery novel that stars real historical figures, the artists Violet Paget and John Sargent. When Violet gets a letter from her relative Mr. Crickley, a clergyman, telling her that he found something interesting the two lifelong friends decide to visit him, only to discover that he is dead. His mysterious death leads them to a trail of holy relics that links them to the legendary King Arthur and Joseph of Arimathea, who as legend says traveled to England after the death ...more
Kimberly
Aug 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
The Spoils of Avalon is a different type of historical mystery covering two separate eras with chapters jumping from sixteenth century Arthurian themed Tudor England to nineteenth century Victorian England. The difference lies in the use of dual narrators and main characters, real life artistic figures John Singer Sargent and his friend author Violet Paget.

Who could have ever imagined that the arrival of a letter could set into place a complex faith driven murder mystery that Sargent and Paget
...more
Michelle Miller (True Book Addict)
I have recently become a fan of historical mysteries so when I was offered this book for review, I jumped at the chance. The beauty of this book is we get two historical eras for the price of one and our historical sleuths are real figures in history, from the art and literary worlds.

The mystery involves the death of a clergyman in the 19th century surrounding the disappearance of a holy relic which came from Glastonbury Abbey in the Tudor era, 16th century England. In it, we get the unlikely pa
...more
Margaret
As posted at http://www.justonemorechapter.com/

This book takes place in 2 different time periods, the 1800's and mid 1500's (under the rule of King Henry VIII). The monasteries are being destroyed under the command of the King and mix in some history, myth from King Arthur and Avalon and you get an entertaining read.

Violet Paget and John Singer Sargent are real historical figures and brought together in 1877, what is suppose to be a friendly visit turns tragic when Violets friend passes under my
...more
CoffeeTimeRomance andMore
The Spoils of Avalon is a truly enjoyable read. Traveling through two different periods of time, as the story is told, takes the reader on a stunning trip. Violet is witty and warm, and the pairing with John is truly magical. The way Ms. Burns tells the story, through the eyes of Violet Paget, allows the reader to relish each moment of the adventure. She fills the story with intrigue and suspense, captivating the reader. Anyone who enjoys a good mystery, accompanied with a journey, will enjoy an ...more
Harvee
Nov 04, 2014 rated it really liked it
Atmospheric settings and intriguing historical facts are woven into this impressive novel. I recommend it for English history buffs and mystery lovers both. The main characters, Paget and Singer Sargent, are an unlikely pair for sleuths but this works well as the book is also set in Victorian England.

For my full review, visit http://bookdilettante.blogspot.com/20...
Sheila
Aug 21, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this first mystery involving John Singer Sargent and Violet Paget. I liked the alternating timelines, 1877 with the young John and Violet, and 1539, as Henry VIII and his minions were "reforming" (pillaging,destroying) the great abbeys and priories of England, and in particular Glastonbury. I'm looking forward to the next in the series.
Tory
Dec 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
What fun to see John Singer Sargent with his pal Violet Paget, who was also the author Vernon Lee. Burns sets the stage for this whodunnit and lets us have a romp through the English countryside. I loved it.
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Mary Burns’ debut historical novel J-THE WOMAN WHO WROTE THE BIBLE was published in July 2010 by O-Books (John Hunt Publishers, UK). Ms. Burns is a member of and book reviewer for the Historical Novel Society and a member of the HNS Conference board of directors. Her second novel, PORTRAITS OF AN ARTIST about the 19th century portrait artist John Singer Sargent, was published by Sand Hill Review P ...more