Book Notification

Ann Swinfen Books In Order

Book links take you to Amazon. As an Amazon Associate I earn money from qualifying purchases.

Publication Order of Chronicles Of Christoval Alvarez Books

The Secret World of Christoval Alvarez (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Enterprise of England (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Portuguese Affair (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
Bartholomew Fair (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
Suffer the Little Children (2015)Description / Buy at Amazon
Voyage to Muscovy (2015)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Play's the Thing (2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
That Time May Cease (2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Lopez Affair (2017)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Fenland Books

Publication Order of Oxford Medieval Mysteries Books

The Bookseller's Tale (2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Novice's Tale (2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Huntsman's Tale (2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Merchant's Tale (2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Troubadour's Tale (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Stonemason's Tale (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

The Anniversary (1996)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Travellers (1997)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Running Tide (1998)Description / Buy at Amazon
Mere Incidents of War (1999)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Testament of Mariam (2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
This Rough Ocean (2015)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Short Stories/Novellas

Envy (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Mutual Silence (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Scent of Oranges (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Secret of Santa Fabriata (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Walk in the Woods (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

In Defence of Fantasy (1984)Description / Buy at Amazon

Ann Swinfen is a bestselling author of Literary Fiction and Historical Fiction novels. She has been writing all her life but became a full-time writer after the youngest of her five children joined university and quit her academic teaching job. Swinfen became a published author in when her stand alone nonfiction novel In Defence of Fantasy was published. Since then the author has written over five stand alone books and three novel series.

Swinfen spent her childhood in England and in the United States. She studies Classics & Mathematics at Oxford University and later married her fellow undergraduate, David Swinfen. While raising her five children and also studying for a BA & Ph.D. in English literature and MSc in Mathematics, she took on a variety of jobs including, translator, university lecturer, software designer and freelance journalist. For nine years, she worked on the governing council of the Open University and worked as a manager and editor for five years for an international computer company. She founded Dundee Book Events in 1995, an organization promoting authors and new books to the general public. Random House published her first three novels, A Running Tide, The Travelers, and The Anniversary and have been translated into German and Dutch.

The Bookseller’s Tale

The Bookseller’s Tale is the first novel in Oxford Medieval Series written by Ann Swinfen. The year is 1353 in Oxford when Nicholas Elyot, a bookseller finds the body of William Farringdom a student floating in river Cherwell.

At first, Nicholas concludes that drowning was the cause of death, but upon further investigation, he discovers evidence of murder. Who could have killed this promising student? As Nicholas and his sidekick try to unravel the mystery surrounding the death of William they find out that he was innocently entangled in a criminal plot and when their inquiries begin to involve the town and the university, Nicholas takes one risky gamble that places his family in jeopardy.
The Bestseller’s Tale is an excellent and enjoyable historical mystery and a good start to a promising series set in the medieval world. The Black Death has swept the entire Europe leaving many people dead including the beautiful wife of Nicholas Elyot. Besides the well woven lovable character, the author introduces the readers to an era when books were scripted and bound by hand. The book features lots of references to other books and well-detailed descriptions of book making.

The characterization in this story is brilliantly done. There is Nicholas’s bossy sister Margaret, a famous cook and very protective of her brother and his two cute children. Nicholas is brilliantly portrayed and so are other characters. Some several historical figures are mentioned in the novel, for instance, there is Queen Philippa and King Edward III and John Wycliffe, the leader of Lollards.

The Novice’s Tale

After novice Emma Thorgold vanishes from Godstow Abbey during the summer of 1353, the hunt begins throughout the entire Oxfordshire countryside. Nicholas and his sidekick Jordain are anxious to help the girl. However, it appears that her stepfather has other intentions. Why is the stepfather determined to destroy her? Will Emma be found unarmed? This second series installment is utterly charming and a more interesting read than the first book. The author has uniquely and neatly woven each character so that the reader can get to know them much better. Additionally, Swinfen makes use of old English words that could regularly send you to your dictionary; however, this should not discourage you to reading the novel as it adds some historical texture to this beautifully woven story. The history in this story is unique and the period details have been vividly described to give the reader an insight of how life was like during the medieval period.

If you like reading historical fiction mysteries, that not only give you a glimpse of the medieval world but also an overview of how mysteries were solved, then Oxford Medieval Mysteries is an ideal series for you.

The Secret World of Christoval Alvarez

The year is 1586 and England is full of traitors who are plotting to assassinate the Queen. Then there is Christoval Alvarez, a refugee who is persuaded to becoming an agent and code-breaker in Sir Francis Walsingham’s secret service. In the race to unravel the assassination plot, who will finally win? – The cold state or the ruthless conspirators?

Alvarez is an immigrant who settles in England from Portugal forced to join Judaism to evade the Inquisition. He wants to become a learned physician just like his dad. However, his gift for mathematics attracts the attention of Sir Francis Walsingham.

Then there is Mary Queen, who is under house arrest but steadily hold treasonous communications with an operative in France want to replace Protestant Elizabeth with a Catholic Queen. The good news is that Walsingham’s team has discovered how these conversations take place, but the problem is that they are coded and also in Spanish and French.

Christoval abilities and skills make him the right person who can decipher these encrypted messages. His past experiences of the Spanish invasion of Portugal give him the courage to help in deciphering. He agrees to take on the job even though it takes him away from the hospital where he always wanted to be. Besides this, his secret only known to one man he distrusts prevents him from refusing Walsingham’s requirements, regardless of the threat they pose to life, health or happiness.

The first novel in Chronicles of Christoval Alvarez is an engaging book. The main character real name is Katerina who disguises herself as a man named Christoval to escape and help her father as a physician in St. Barts hospital. Her disguise as a man adds some more tension to this adventure. The story of her past life and how she escapes from Portugal is satisfying. Espionage tales set in Elizabethan times are quite satisfying and promising, and the author, Ann Swinfen delivers a well-plotted story that is presented in the proper atmospheric setting. Christoval is an engaging and smart protagonist who is easy to get along with and fun to follow. This novel is a brilliant series opener that will firmly grip your attention from the first book to the last.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Ann Swinfen

2 Responses to “Ann Swinfen”

  1. Lee: 1 year ago

    I’m with you Marie. I hope another book is planned to tie up the loose ends in this great series.

  2. Marie Flechas: 2 years ago

    I’ve just finished The Stonemason’s Tale. Please tell me if and when there will be a sequel! Nicholas & Emma aren’t married yet!!! It can’t end there!


Leave a Reply