Daisy Kirkcaldy (The Last Knight's Daughter) has become the most successful of the small group of female entrepreneurs in Scotland, but success has brought her little joy. While she stayed behind at home in The Cangate awaiting the arrival of her firstborn, Hepburn's merchant ship was blown out of the water by the Spanish near Ostend. Nearly two years have passed without any word of survivors and demand for ransom. With emotional support from Uncle James Melville, her half-brother Gil, and Queen Anne's prim but smitten secretary Will Fowler, she pursues her money lending enterprises and her fabrication of fine jewelry for the Queen, doing her best to provide a cheerful household environment for her wee bairn, Peter. But, being a wealthy widow makes her vulnerable. When her lusty warlord kinsman Sir Andrew Ker of Ferniehirst's attraction to his young aunt takes an aggressive turn with Hepburn out of the picture, Daisy should have seen it coming. Even though she successfully drives him off, she kws there will be a next time, if t from Andy, from someone like him. Even Queen Anne has been pushing her to accept Hepburn's death and move on with her life. But Daisy is quick to declare she will do such thing until someone brings her a sack containing her husband's bones. When an assassin tries to scale the outer walls of Cockie house to enter her second-floor chamber, she has idea of the motive for the attack, but she suspects is t a robbery. Then, she receives a te from her foster-sister, the French nun kwn as La Belle Ecossaise, with news that Hepburn may be alive. Sister Marguerite de Kircaldie has reason to believe Will's disappearance may be part of a plot to kill the Scottish king before Elizabeth Tudor dies, replacing him with the unkwn princess born in secret at Loch Leven. The attack on Daisy is a thwarted attempt at blackmail to assure her silence, in case a factual basis exists for her vehement denials of Hepburn's death. Although there is thing the nun can do to prevent the slaughter of her secret brother without breaking her holy vows, the daughter of the dead queen's last champion is t similarly restrained. Hence, Edinburgh famous wadwife and a few intimate friends embark on a bold enterprise ending in a dramatic showdown in the Spanish Netherlands, once again pitting Daisy and an eclectic group of allies against James VI's traitorous cousin Wild Frank Stewart, the half- mad Earl of Bothwell. With the executed Queen Marie Stuart's heartrending secret in the balance, Daisy places her life on the line in a contest in which the English crown is the trophy, and the likely hero is a horse. Join Daisy, Will, and a host of charters from Unkwn Princess and The Last Knight's Daughter, along with cameo appearance by Catherine d'Medici's granddaughter, Archduchess Isabella Clara Eugenia, and her husband Archduke Albert of Austria. The newest addition to the Scots in the series is the historical character, Sir Andrew Ker of Oxnam, Master of Jedburgh, who appears as Dand, in hor of his infamous Reiver ancestor, Sir Andrew (Dand) Ker of Ferniehirst, scourge of the Middle Marches during the first half of the 16th Century.
Linda Root is the author of two large historical novels in the Queen of Scots Suite, The First Marie and the Queen of Scots and the Last Knight and the Queen of Scots, and the books in the Legacy of the Queen of Scots series, including The Unknown Princess, The Last Knight's Daughter, 1603: The Queen's Revenge, and In the Shadow of the Gallows. She is a retired major crimes prosecutor and former Supervising Deputy District Attorney in the Morongo Basin of San Bernardino County, an area known for its wild beauty and the bizarre nature of its crime. Root is a member of the State Bar of California, The Bar of the Supreme Court of the United States and the Marie Stuart Society, She serves on the current Board of the M.m.Bennetts Award for Historical Fiction, and an alumnus of Pomona College and Thomas Jefferson School of Law. She lives in Yucca Valley, California on the edge of the Joshua Tree National Park.