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Paradise Walk by Mary Malloy

Paradise Walk

Following the path of a medieval pilgrimage, historian Lizzie Manning finds unexpected danger. Chaucer may have based his “Wife of Bath” on a real woman, whose descendant holds a journal and several artifacts.  But can the investigation lead to something more sinister? Are the bones of St. Thomas Becket hidden in Canterbury Cathedral, and is someone willing to kill to protect the secret?

If Paradise Walk piqued your interest in The Canterbury Tales, Arthurian Romances, English History, or the process of making a pilgrimage or long walk, Mary has suggestions for more reading.

Is your book group reading Paradise Walk?  Would you like Mary to visit your reading group?  Contact Mary to learn more about available dates. 

The Thomas Becket reliquary described in Paradise Walk is based on a remarkable series of enameled boxes made in the decades following Becket’s murder in 1170.  At that time Limoges (now in France), was under the rule of the English kings.  Artists in this flourishing center of enamelling on copper, created at least forty boxes to hold relics of the saint, which survive to the present.  The first one pictured below was purchased by the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, from Sotheby’s Auction House in 1997 (and is mentioned in Paradise Walk!); the second one is at the Louvre. 

Thomas Beckett

Image: Wikimedia Commons

Thomas Beckett

Image: Wikimedia commons

For more on the Becket reliquaries follow this link.

Becket Reliquaries on exhibit in the U.S.
The Metropolitan Museum in New York currently has a small enameled Becket reliquary on exhibit, along with other Becket items, including a wonderful badge of the tomb worn by medieval pilgrims.  Until 27 May 2012, the reliquary owned by the London Society of Antiquaries will be on exhibit at the Yale Center for British Art in New Haven, CT.  For more information visit this link at the Yale Center for British Art.  

Read more about Paradise Walk at Leapfrog Press.