Ned Hayes : Sinful Folk

Sinful Folk

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History, Fiction & Literature

For Readers Of

Hilary Mantel, Ariana Franklin, Brenda Vantrease, Karen Maitland, Geraldine Brooks

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Campanile Press

Publication Date

Jan 28, 2014



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A tragic loss. A desperate journey. A mother seeks the truth.

In December of 1377, four children were burned to death in a suspicious house fire. Villagers traveled hundreds of miles across England to demand justice. Sinful Folk is the story of this terrible mid-winter journey as seen by Mear, a former nun who has lived for a decade disguised as a mute man, raising her son quietly in this isolated village. For years, she has concealed herself and all her history. But on this journey, she will find the strength to claim the promise of her past and create a new legacy. Mear begins her journey in terror and heartache, and ends in triumph and redemption.

The remarkable new novel by Ned Hayes, illustrated by New York Times bestselling author/illustrator Nikki McClure, Sinful Folk illuminates the medieval era with profound insight and compassion.

Editorial Reviews


*Starred Review*

"Brilliantly conceived and beautifully executed, Hayes’ novel is woven through with a deep knowledge of medieval history, all conveyed in mesmerizing prose. At the center of the novel is Mear, a brave and heartbreaking character whose story of triumph over adversity is a joy to read." -- Joanne Wilkinson


''A pilgrim tale worthy of Chaucer, evocative, compelling and peopled with unforgettable characters artfully delivered by a master storyteller. Be warned: Dress warmly before beginning this perilous journey across a winter-blasted, medieval landscape of fire and ice. Your heart will shiver and not just from the cold. An excellent novel, Sinful Folk. A wonderful book.''

-- Brenda Rickman Vantrease best-selling author of The Illuminator and The Mercy Seller


"An exquisitely written historical thriller that chillingly evokes the fear and cruelty of medieval England in the dark years after the Black Death. Told by a brave and charismatic narrator who will twist your heart-strings with her story from the first page to final startling revelation. An amazing novel based on a truly fascinating, unsolved mystery of the Middle Ages."

-- Karen Maitland, bestselling author of Company of Liars and The Owl Killers


"Sinful Folk' is a beautiful and bleak tale - a murder mystery and a journey of personal revelation - of English commoners making an unimaginable journey of two hundred miles to seek justice and answers. Ned Hayes takes the reader on a time machine trip to the harsh and hopeful life that ordinary people really lived. "

-- William Dietrich, Pulitzer Prize winning best-selling author of the Ethan Gage series.

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More From this Author