The Alchemist’s Daughter Book reviews


Author(s): Mary LawrenceDownload  


In the year 1543 of King Henry VIII’s turbulent reign, the daughter of a notorious alchemist finds herself suspected of cold-blooded murder. . . .Bianca Goddard employs her knowledge of herbs and medicinal plants to concoct remedies for the disease-riddled poor in London’s squalid Southwark slum. But when her friend Jolyn comes to her complaining of severe stomach pains, Bianca’s prescription seems to kill her on the spot. Recovering from her shock, Bianca suspects Jolyn may have been poisoned before coming to her—but the local constable is not so easily convinced.To clear her name and keep her neck free of the gallows, Bianca must apply her knowledge of the healing arts to deduce exactly how her friend was murdered and by whom—before she herself falls victim to a similar fate.

Some Reviews: 201 in

Meredith ( on Semi-Hiatus until February)

The Alchemist’s Daughter is an enjoyable mystery.

Bianca Goddard, daughter of an infamous alchemist in 16th century London, is falsely accused of murdering her friend, Jolyn. Bianca must use her medicinal knowledge in order to solve Jolyn’s murder.


Julie  rated it      

breezed through this book very quickly, reading it in a matter of hours. At times the language did slow me down as the author added as much authenticity to the slang and pronunciations as possible without losing the reader in the process. I thought this was a nice touch and added more atmosphere and realism. Still, this is a very easy read, very different from the usual procedural type mystery making it especially fun to read. I am thankful this novel is a part of a series featuring Bianca because this book has made me a fan.
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Betty rated it     

The story is set during the reign of King Henry VIII so there’s a fair amount of squalor depicted and you get a whole new appreciation for indoor plumbing, electricity, etc! Bianca Goddard is in the lower rungs of society but she manages to eke out a living concocting herbal remedies for the poor and unfortunate. Her friend, Jolyn, comes to her one day complaining of severe abdominal pain and cramping. Bianca puts together a tried and true remedy for her friend who promptly dies on the spot. Now Bianca has to figure out who actually poisoned Jolyn in order to save herself from the gallows. Full disclosure: I received an advance copy of this book from Goodreads in exchange for an unbiased review.

Tara Kable

Tara Kable rated it     

I received an ARC copy of this from netgalley in return for an honest review. This book took a minute for me to get into, but only because it was written as if we were in the 1600’s…which we were, so thats a good thing, just unusual. I love the idea of potions and spells, and this one had a really good who done it! Thank you netgalley!


Roberta rated it     

There has always been a lot of interest in Tudor England during the reign of Henry VIII. In recent years there have been books, movies and TV shows that explored that turbulent time. Mostly there has been depiction of the royals of that time when there seemed to be endless intrigues and plots. You could be in high regard with King Henry at one point and then fall out of favor and be executed without a trial.

Life was very precarious in the mid 1500’s. The people at the bottom rung of society had a much tougher life than those of noble birth. The laws of the land and awful living conditions made it a daily struggle just to survive.

Bianca Goddard is one of those who live in less than favorable conditions. She does have to gift of being able to craft medicinals. This is usually a blessing for those around her, but it becomes a curse after her best friend dies after drinking a potion that was supposed to help abdominal cramping. Bianca is accused of poisoning her friend and she is afraid she will be put to death before the real killer can be found.

THE ALCHEMIST’S DAUGHTER by Mary Lawrence is the first in a mystery series. Bianca is a strong, brave women who must look out for herself in difficult situations. She does have some friends to help her. One of the most helpful is Meddybemps, a street seller. He has a lot of street smarts and adds some comic relief to a sometimes dark, gritty tale.

Historical fiction has been one of my favorite genres in recent years. I always learn new things about eras gone by. Mary Lawrence has done deep research on the common people’s lives in Tudor England. Besides being truly engaged in the story, I learned where the terms “muckraker” and “the Clink” originated.

If you like mysteries and/or historical fiction, you will want to pick up a copy of THE ALCHEMIST’S DAUGHTER by Mary Lawrence. I am looking forward to the second novel in this series.


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