Four savage murders . . . an elusive killer . . . and one extraordinary woman who can reveal the secrets of the dead. In medieval Cambridge, four children have been murdered. The Catholic townsfolk blame their Jewish neighbors, so to save them from the rioting mob, the Cambridge Jews are placed under the protection of the king. Hoping scientific investigation will help catch the true killer, King Henry II calls on his cousin, the King of Sicily–whose subjects include the best medical experts in Europe–and asks for his finest "master of the art of death," the earliest form of medical examiner. The Italian doctor chosen for the task is a young prodigy from the University of Salerno, an expert in the science of anatomy and the art of detection. But her name is Adelia; the king has been sent a "mistress of the art of death." In a backward and superstitious country like England, Adelia faces danger at every turn. As she examines the victims and retraces their last steps, she must conceal her true identity in order to avoid accusations of witchcraft. As Adelia's investigation takes her along Cambridge's shadowy river paths, and behind the closed doors of its churches and nunneries, the hunt intensifies and the killer prepares to strike again. . . . From the Compact Disc edition.