The Altarpiece: Sarah Kennedy

★★½

The Cross and the Crown: Book I

It is 1535 and Henry VIII, bedazzled by a pair of black eyes, has put aside his wife Katherine of Aragon and turned his back on the Catholic Church in favour of Reform. His sentence falls heavily on the kingdom’s monasteries, which are charged with immorality and avarice, and their rich goods and lands seized for the benefit of the king – or more accurately the benefit of the local lord, should he have the courage to take them.

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