Nine for the Devil cover


"In Reed and Mayer's superior ninth mystery set in sixth-century Constantinople...the puzzle is challenging enough to keep readers searching for clues, but the triumph of the authors lies in their spot-on recreation of the political and bureaucratic climate of the times."
-- Publisher's Weekly, 1/9/2012 Read the whole review

"The authors once again make the Byzantine Empire vibrant and nuanced."
--Library Journal, 3/1/2012

"More complex and colorful than any Byzantine mosaic, Nine for the Devil, will sweep you back into the cruel intrigue-ridden court of the Emperor Justinian, where treachery and murder linger behind every shadowed column of the imperial palace in Constantinople."
-- Robin Burcell, award-winning author of The Bone Chamber

"Twisty plotting, fabulous dialogue, and aristocratic backstabbing drew me into this clever plot (Who killed an Empress who showed no signs of being murdered?) and I could not stop reading until I watched master problem-solver John dance his way out of the deadly wrath of his grieving emperor."
Jerrilyn Farmer, bestselling author of the Madeline Bean mysteries

"The unusual premise instills the narrative with a disturbing tension...Nine for the Devil is a good example of how to set a mystery within a real-life scenario...a denouement that's both satisfying and historically plausible."
--Sarah Johnson
Read the whole review at Reading the Past.

"Words cannot describe the creeping fear which seeps through... this excellent story, drawing the reader into the stranglehold of life in the 6th Century of the Byzantine Empire."
--Diana Hockley
Read the whole review at Kings River Life.

"...a great entry that combines a strong whodunit with a puissant look at the period mostly inside the place but somewhat also through the heroes’ friends and family outside too."
--Harriet Klausner
Read the whole review at Genre Go Round Reviews

"The first John the Lord Chamberlain mystery I have read and I am now truly a fan! Can't wait to see John again. This husband and wife team of authors took me back in time accurately and in an intoxicating manner."
--Anne Tarski at NetGalley, 2/22/2012

"This book was AWESOME!! ... There was phenomenal character development and the book oozed that it was intelligently written. This is def. a series I will go back and start from the first book and stalk for continued new releases!!!"
--Noami Blackburn at

"...far more complex than a whodunit...A dark chilling look at a delicate balance of politics...and the search for a killer that may not exist!"
--Alan Bishop.
Read the whole review at Criminal History

"An absolute page-turner, and one that is easily read without having started with other books in the series."
--Amy Sikes at

The latest John the Lord Chamberlain sixth century Constantinople mystery (see Eight for Eternity) is a great entry that combines a strong whodunit with a puissant look at the period mostly inside the place but somewhat also through the heroes' friends and family outside too. The palace politics engages the audience as the norm is superstition (for instance the Emperor is a demon), backstabbing and betrayal. John knows the urgency of his mission as time is running out on him and his loved ones with Justinian demanding the head of his wife's killer. With a moral dilemma to hand over someone or else, fans will enjoy John's latest adventures in the palace of Emperor Justinian. -- Midwest Book Review March 2012