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A Twisted Vengeance

(Kate Clifford #2)

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  205 ratings  ·  29 reviews
1399. York is preparing for civil war, teeming with knights and their armed retainers summoned for the city’s defense. Henry of Lancaster is rumored to have landed on the northeast coast of England, not so far from York, intent on reclaiming his inheritance—an inheritance which his cousin, King Richard, has declared forfeit.

With the city unsettled and rife with rumors, Ele
Hardcover, 400 pages
Published May 9th 2017 by Pegasus Books
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Average rating 3.97  · 
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Jul 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
**RATING 4.5**

While I do enjoy reading historical novels, historical mysteries is not a genre that I have much experience of, but I am so glad that I picked up the Kate Clifford series as they really are so descriptive and engrossing. Having devoured the first book, THE SERVICE OF THE DEAD, I immediately jumped into A TWISTED VENGEANCE, and I can happily say that both books are equally as addictive.

In this series, we meet Kate, a young widow, who is desp
May 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Originally published at Reading Reality

In yesterday’s review, I noted that one of the things that historical mysteries often have in common is that they are set in times of great political upheaval. And so it proves with A Twisted Vengeance, the second book in Candace Robb’s Kate Clifford series, after last year’s The Service of the Dead.

Kate Clifford, the protagonist and amateur detective of this series, lives in York, England in 1399, a time when England was again on the cusp of civil war. (Wh
Jul 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is the second book in the Kate Clifford series and I must admit that I really like this character. This second book picks up where the first book left off – our heroine is trying to keep her family save and to save enough money to pay off her deceased husband’s debts. Her mother had just returned to town with three beguines – holy women – and she was looking to reestablish a relationship with Kate. But Kate was very leery.

The politics of the time are dangerous and changeable and Kate just w
Janet Martin
Mar 23, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not as strong as the previous entry in this series due to too many characters, too much walking around holding short conversations. But still a decent mystery and interesting historical setting make it a better than average read
Eustacia Tan
Jul 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nlb-ereads
My hold for A Twisted Vengeance came while I was in the UK, so I managed to read this while actually visiting York! While I didn’t manage to wander around, book in hand, reading this while in a Tudor-period house made the book come alive and made me fall more in love with the series – so prepare yourself for some gushing ahead.

A Twisted Vengeance is the second book in the Kate Clifford mysteries. It picks up shortly where The Service of the Dead left off, with Kate’s mother in York. Kate and her
Jenny Q
Jul 13, 2017 marked it as to-check-out
Shelves: blog-tour
Casting a Female Sleuth in a Historical Crime Series - Guest Post + Giveaway @ Let Them Read Books ...more
May 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
To start with, Candace Robb really knows York. If time travel existed, she could go back to this period and feel right at home. That comes through to the reader in this book. In this, the second in this series, Kate Clifford's world is shaken up when her mother returns and moves in next door along with a group of poor sisters. They are women without dowries who cannot enter a convent without one. I found that part of the story very interesting. When one of the women is attacked and she has quest ...more
Jenny Wheeler
May 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoy Candace Robb's historical mysteries and this one is no exception. Set against a background of looming civil war, her heroine Kate Clifford has to unravel why her mother - newly returned from the Continent - refuses to acknowledge what might lie behind her servants mysterious deaths - as well as keep her own household safe in a time of political danger. I note one reviewer described Kate as a "feminist ahead of her time" and I agree but I didn't find her audacity incompatible with ...more
Ann  Theis
Jul 28, 2017 added it
Shelves: 2017-stars
Jul 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: what-an-animal
I did like the previous novel slightly better than this second entry and do recommend you read the books in order but if you have any interest in historical fiction, this is a series not to pass by.

Scandals and betrayals on top of political unrest make for a deeply complex mystery with layers and layers. Also consider Kate's seemingly unnatural connection to her deceased twin brother and to the endearing pair of war hounds, Lille and Ghent.
With Kate's mother's recent arrival, and seemingly chan
Deanna Madden
Jun 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
A Twisted Vengeance is the second novel in Candace Robb’s Kate Clifford mystery series set in York in 1399 as Henry Lancaster arrives in England to challenge his cousin, Richard II, for the throne. I loved the first novel (The Service of the Dead) with its wonderfully detailed recreation of a distant time and place as well as the fascinating independent heroine, Kate Clifford, a young woman struggling to live her life on her own terms at a time when it was difficult to do so. Kate is back in thi ...more
Martha Conway
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I have been waiting for this second book in the Kate Clifford series ever since I finished the first one, and it did not disappoint. The heroine and amateur sleuth, Katherine Clifford, is a strong, capable, smart, and loving woman who is trying to make a living in medieval York after her husband died (and left her with debts as well as two out-of-wedlock children from a liaison with a French woman). In this novel, Kate's prickly mother comes to live in York under mysterious circumstances. Kate a ...more
May 07, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
1399 and a civil war looms. With the widow Catherine Clifford wondering at the secrets her mother, Eleanor has with her abrupt arrival in York. While living next door to Catherine, one of Eleanor's beguines or poor sisters is attacked. But this is just the start.
I enjoyed the mystery and the historical setting. I also liked most of the characters but the story seems to lack a spark to keep me totally engrossed. Which is unusual as I have read quite a few books from this author which I have reall
Kristyn Stimach
Jan 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
I have thoroughly enjoyed reading both books in the series. I find that sometimes the second book in a series lacks the excitement and thrill when you first start a book with twists and turns. I did not feel that way with this one. It was suspenseful and I absolutely couldn't put it down until I could find out all the twists and turns that was going on. I am so glad I won these two books in a goodreads giveaway and will definitely be looking for other books by this author in the future.
Cindy Ladensack
I really like Kate (and the rest of her household, especially the dogs), and the story was well-plotted, but this time period is just not my cup of tea. All the intrigue and unrest is kind of exhausting, even just to read about, and really confusing. I suppose if I understood more about the history, and had read the first book in the series, I might have enjoyed it more.
Elizabeth Ambrey
Jan 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Sad to say I read book 3 first so found this one a bit unusual as I already knew some of the outcomes. Great read though- but I would say for enjoyment might be better to read in sequence. Have just started Volume 1. Really doing a disservice. The Author is great . Loved her writing for many years. Didn't realise how many I have missed.
Jan 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Kate's mother and her beguines have set up in the house next door when break ins begin, followed by murder. Kate, with her resourceful servants and two wolf hounds, investigates and uncovers a tale of betrayal and revenge. The book is well written although it got off to a slow start. Robb has certainly created a cast of interesting characters.
Aug 08, 2017 rated it liked it
I enjoyed this novel but once again the beginning is slow to start. The characters are all great but I found the story confusing with all the names tossed in. The plot moves fairly quickly once the story gets going. I do enjoy a strong female protagonist!
Sep 03, 2017 rated it it was ok
"meticulous" attention to detail of medieval York really means exhaustive, pedantic, and droning detail. I had to force myself to finish this one, even though the characters were fully envisioned, as it droned on and on and on.
barbara trudel
Mar 13, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Betrayal versus Trust

Set in the late Middle Ages, this story emphasizes the impact the Catholic Church had on society as well as On the actions of individual people. The behind-the-scene national and family politics are as corrupt as they are today.
Kathy Moberg
Oct 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Candace Robb's newest series is off to a very good start. As I wrote after reading the first of the "Kate books", I'm very glad that she's back writing medieval mysteries!
Mary Hale
Oct 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Read the first book in the series first.
I love the characters in this book, but to be honest the mystery is kind of weak.
Jul 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
Really interesting book though it took me a bit to remember the characters and their back story...if you like historical fiction--you will enjoy this book.
Aug 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Continues to add depth to the lives of these characters in medieval York. I am booked on this rich historical series with heart and mystery.
Mary Kay Kare
Ultimately, disappointing. I very much feel Kate is a modern woman in fancy dress. yes, 1399 is the end of the Middle Ages, but it's still 600 years ago!
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Oct 25, 2017
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Sep 27, 2019
Ruth Peabody
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Oct 09, 2018
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Storyteller, mythweaver, author of the Owen Archer, Kate Clifford, & Margaret Kerr mysteries. Primary residence, medieval York.

I blog about writing, medieval history, writing women's stories, and feature new scholarship in my field at, and share loads of medieval news, folklore, and whimsy on my facebook page, Candace Robb

Other books in the series

Kate Clifford (3 books)
  • The Service of the Dead (Kate Clifford #1)
  • A Murdered Peace (Kate Clifford #3)

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