There are four titles within the series:
Kindred Spirits: Tower of London
Kindred Spirits: Royal Mile
Kindred Spirits: Westminster Abbey
Kindred Spirits: York
Author: Jennifer C. Wilson
Genre: Paranormal Historical Fiction
Publisher All are published by Crooked Cat Books
Kindred Spirits: Tower of London
A King, three Queens, a handful of nobles and a host of former courtiers…
In the Tower of London, the dead outnumber the living, with the likes of Tudor Queens Anne Boleyn and Katherine Howard rubbing shoulders with one man who has made his way back from his place of death at Bosworth Field to discover the truth about the disappearance of his famous nephews.
Amidst the chaos of daily life, with political and personal tensions running high, Richard III takes control, as each ghostly resident looks for their own peace in the former palace – where privacy was always a limited luxury.
With so many characters haunting the Tower of London, will they all find the calm they crave? But foremost – will the young Plantagenet Princes join them?
Kindred Spirits: Royal Mile
Along Edinburgh’s historic Royal Mile, royalty and commoners – living and dead – mingle amongst the museums, cafés and former royal residences. From Castle Hill to Abbey Strand, there is far more going on than meets the eye, as ghosts of every era and background make their home along the Mile.
Returning to the city for her annual visit, Mary, Queen of Scots, is troubled by the lacklustre attitude of her father, King James V of Scotland, and decides to do something about it, with the aid of her spiritual companions. More troubling, though, is the arrival of a constant thorn in her side: her second husband, Lord Darnley.
Can Mary resolve both her own issues and those of her small, ghostly court?
Kindred Spirits: Westminster Abbey
On hallowed ground…
With over three thousand burials and memorials, including seventeen monarchs, life for the ghostly community of Westminster Abbey was never going to be a quiet one. Add in some fiery Tudor tempers, and several centuries-old feuds, and things can only go one way: chaotic.
Against the backdrop of England’s most important church, though, it isn't all tempers and tantrums. Poets' Corner hosts poetry battles and writing workshops, and close friendships form across the ages.
With the arrival of Mary Queen of Scots, however, battle ensues. Will Queens Mary I and Elizabeth I ever find their common ground, and lasting peace?
The bestselling Kindred Spirits series continues within the ancient walls of Westminster Abbey.
Kindred Spirits: York
In the ancient city of York, something sinister is stirring...
What do a highwayman, an infamous traitor, and two hardened soldiers have in common? Centuries of friendship, a duty to the town, and a sense of mischief – until they realise that someone is trying to bring chaos to their home.
Joining forces with local Vikings, the four friends keep an eye on the situation, but then, disaster strikes.
Can peace be restored both inside and out of the city walls?
Kindred Spirits: Tower of London Excerpt
Anne sighed. “We’ve been through this before, Richard. It wasn’t funny then, and it isn’t funny now.”
“Well, it’s this lot. All these years, and I could swear they’re getting worse.” He leaned back against the cool brick, and shaded his eyes as he scanned a group of already-bored teenagers being herded by an increasingly-frustrated tour guide.
“Perhaps we are simply getting jaded. Come on, I know you love your school trips.”
She gave him no choice, pulling him away from the wall. He sighed. Anne was right; he did enjoy independent tours like this one, although he would enjoy them so much more if they got their facts right. He watched her as she wandered around the back of the group, looking for targets.
“Shall we give them the full works?” she called over to him, the pearls of her favourite necklace winking in the sunlight, and the famous ‘B’ glistening. She still never took it off, pinning it to her dress with a brooch during her headless periods.
“Why not?” replied Richard, pulling himself together. “Where’s George?”
“Yours or mine?”
Richard laughed; the two brother Georges, one of a dozen things he and Anne had in common. Things had become so confused over the years that in the end, they had agreed that for clarity, in general company they would refer to ‘Clarence’ for George Plantagenet, and ‘Boleyn’ for George Boleyn. Between themselves, however, the joke still continued.
“Yours,” clarified Richard. “A removable head is probably more their thing than rising from a barrel whilst gargling malmsey.”
“I haven’t seen him today actually; I think he’s pestering Jane again.”
“Very funny. He’s hardly going to be trying to seduce his own wife now, is he?” Anne laughed at her own joke.
“True,” said Richard, as he mirrored Anne’s path around the group. “Anyway, show-time?”
The former Queen grinned at Richard, as they took up their positions.
“I presume the others are in their usual places?” asked Richard, as he checked Anne’s necklace was neatly aligned, and tugged the waistline of his own jacked once he was satisfied with the fastenings at the neck of his shirt. Being dead was one thing, but that was not an excuse not to take care in your appearance. Especially not when you had been a King.
“…And this is Traitor’s Gate, where both the guilty and the innocent have been brought into the Tower down the years, knowing full well the fate which could await them, once they set food within these walls,” the guide informed her charges, trying unsuccessfully to inject some enthusiasm into them. “Anne Boleyn herself, the Queen of England, second wife of Henry VIII, entered the Tower for her final visit through this very gate.”
“And I never left,” Anne whispered into the ear of the nearest student, a shy-looking boy with blond hair. He spun around, eyes wide with anger, as though ready to confront a fellow student guilty of the trick. Seeing nobody, he shook his head, and turned back to the guide.
“An easy target,” Anne said, smiling as she turned to Richard. “Onwards!”
Kindred Spirits: Royal Mile Excerpt
As the tour party set off, Mary and Clare fell in with the group, following along at the back, as they made their way along the Mile, their guide outlining the foul deeds which had befallen people throughout Edinburgh’s history. From the poor kitchen boy, to the piper, with even Lady Janet getting a mention, no stone was left unturned as they wound along darkened alleyways, tales getting distinctly taller as the night progressed. On such a warm night, the desired chill in the air did not materialize for the tour guide, but as they edged down Mary King’s lose, something did indeed brush against the visitors’ arms as they passed, tugging gently at hair, and moaning unintelligibly.
“The students are on good form,” whispered Mary to Clare, as they passed two girls, dressed entirely in black, hugging an alcove from which they performed their ‘haunting’. With the visitors moving on, Mary gestured to Clare, who pulled herself up to her full height, and, in full visibility, flashed past the girls, her blue gown billowing around her in all its glory, the silk rustling as it brushed their legs.
“Did you see that? No, no, it cannot be…”
The girls’ voices merged into one as they leapt from their hiding place, and stared up the alley.
“It must have been one of the other tours, getting into position, that’s all,” said one, reaching for her friend’s hand in the darkness.
“But we don’t do costumes. None of them do tonight, remember? We were told.”
“Then what was…”
Her question was cut off by her friend’s scream. As she turned to see what had caused it, Mary was perfectly positioned. Head under her arm, she swooped down on them, her headless neck inches away from their faces.
It was expert timing. The terrified girls fled the scene, just as the next tour group arrived to see if they would have any luck tracking down the spirits of the Close.
“Don’t go down there, just don’t,” one of the girls yelled as they raced past, desperate for open space, air, and the safety of the evening’s dwindling crowds. She scarcely looked at the tourists, who were laughing nervously, as though certain this was ‘part of the show’.
Down in the Close, Mary and Clare were being double with laughter at the reaction of the two girls.
Kindred Spirits: Westminster Abbey Excerpt
Queen Elizabeth I of England was sulking. And not quietly, as the rest of the Abbey’s residents would have preferred. Despite her advancing years, she could still flounce in style, and was keen to ensure everyone knew what was annoying her this time.
“It’s so boring here!” she exclaimed, dropping gracelessly into one of the choir stalls. “Nothing ever happens.”
“She’s been to the Tower again,” whispered Catherine Knollys to her brother, but not quite quietly enough, as the queen’s friends and cousins wandered over to see what specifically had been troubling her this time.
“Yes, yes, I have. At least things happen there.”
“Our Uncle George still as entertaining as ever then?” Henry Carey tried to divert his cousin’s attention, but only made it worse.
“Naturally. He was haunting the barrel of Malmsey with Clarence, and it was hilarious, as usual. Scaring people out of their skins. That’s what we ghosts should be doing, not just loitering about discussing experiments.” She glared at where Charles Darwin and Robert Stephenson were once again in deep conversation, sitting out of the way of the early tourists starting to make their way through the great church. Without a word, Darwin glared at her, then shifted in his seat turning his back against her, much to Elizabeth’s disgust.
“We do plenty of haunting, Cousin. It’s just that, well, you know the Abbey’s never really lent itself to that.”
“No, Catherine – everyone has simply become too old and too dull over the centuries. And too weak to stand up to my wretched great-grandmother. It’s all her fault.”
Catherine and Henry shot nervous glances at each other. When Elizabeth was in one of these moods, little could be done to stop her. Even her beloved Dudley had retreated back to Warwick after witnessing one of her angrier days. Before either could speak again, their cousin had moved on, stomping through the Abbey until she found the memorial to William Pulteney, the Earl of Bath.
As though knowing what was expected, the book in the centre of the statue flicked pages in silence. It wasn’t good enough.
“See? See that? A page of a statue’s book turning. Over three thousand of us in here, seventeen monarchs, no less, as the guidebooks tell us, and that’s the best we can come up with?” Queen Elizabeth spun on her heel, turning back to the siblings. “At the Tower they have my mother removing her severed head, with my step-mother and my aunt alongside her. They have a young, robust King, leading the way forward. They have wailings and chain-rattlings and, well, everything. We have a statue, turning its page.”
By now, a crowd had grown around the Queen, noting, not for the first time, how similar she was to her great-grandmother when her temper really took hold. Fiery Tudor blood indeed.
Kindred Spirits: York Excerpt
“Have you seen this, Tudor? They said we wouldn’t make it to Stevenage – Stevenage is the first stop!” The ghost of King Richard III of England was staring up at the departures board at King’s Cross Station, studying the times of the upcoming trains. “Honestly, they have no faith.”
“Your wives have no doubt that this is still a ridiculous idea,” muttered Anne Neville, shooting a smile at her niece Elizabeth of York, who loitered at her side, moving her weight from foot to foot. Well, what would have been her weight, if she had any.
“Did you know it was first?” Elizabeth asked her aunt, quietly.
“Not necessarily first, but it was either there or Peterborough. I’m still convinced they’ll try and destroy each other before we’ve even left the end of the platform.” Her mind drifted back to the Tube ride across town, and the hassle that four ghosts could get into, even without trying. And now they had two hours on a train to look forward to. The men were still bickering.
“We’ll go to my exhibition first – chronological. Think about it, it even has the word ‘logical’ in the middle of it,” Richard was saying.
“But mine’s closer to the station – why waste time in back-tracking?” countered Henry VII.
Richard looked to his wife and niece.
“First, we go to the Minster to pay our respects, say our prayers, and ensure the local dignitaries know we have arrived,” stipulated Anne. “Two kings of England cannot just turn up unannounced and start sightseeing. Especially not you two. Especially not in York.” She raised her hand to both men, silencing any further discussion on the topic.
“Come on, they’ve put up the platform number for our first option,” said Elizabeth, glancing around to confirm where they needed to be.
“Don’t worry, we can wait for the next, or even the one after that,” said Henry, draping his arm around his wife’s waist. “There’s somebody we need to visit here first. Now, which way to platform 9 or 10?”
“Really? Aren’t we a bit too serious to start annoying the Harry Potter fans?” scoffed Richard, looking back at the queue which had already formed next to the sculpture of a luggage trolley vanishing through a wall.
“I mean the real platform 9 or 10,” replied Henry, his eyes scanning the signs with intent.
Suddenly, Richard realised what he was thinking. “Boudicca?”
At the name, Anne and Elizabeth stopped looking at the board and spun to face Richard.
“What?” he asked.
“No,” said Elizabeth, as Anne nodded her agreement. “I won’t hear of it. We met, as planned. We got here, as planned. We are sticking to that plan. No deviations, no sidetracks, and no risking annoying an infamous warrior queen on her own territory. Nobody knows for certain that she’s here anyway. And who knows who else we might inadvertently disturb by looking for her?”
“But—” started Henry.
“No,” Anne cut him off. “Come on, I haven’t seen many move towards this one, let’s go find ourselves some seats.” She glanced at Elizabeth. “There should be plenty of room in first class, all being well.”
Slipping through the metal, they found themselves an empty table for four, and settled themselves. Anne had been right; first class was almost empty. They could travel north to York in style, even if she doubted they could get there in peace.
Amazon US series link: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07KPKHK82?ref=series_rw_dp_labf
Amazon CA series link: https://www.amazon.ca/gp/bookseries/B071CWJQ4F/ref=dp_st_1911381032
Amazon UK series link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/bookseries/B071D5RYRV/
Jennifer C. Wilson is a marine biologist by training, who developed an equal passion for history and historical fiction whilst stalking Mary, Queen of Scots on childhood holidays (she has since moved on to Richard III). Enrolling on an adult education workshop on her return to the north-east of England for work reignited her pastime of creative writing, and she has been filling notebooks ever since.
In 2014, Jennifer won the Story Tyne short story competition, and has been working on a number of projects since, including co-hosting the North Tyneside Writers’ Circle. Her Kindred Spirits novels are published by Crooked Cat Books and her timeslip novella, The Last Plantagenet?, by Ocelot Press.
She lives in North Tyneside, and is very proud of her approximately 2-inch view of the North Sea.
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