The Last Hours

Minette Walters

RRP: £13.99

2 November 2017

Published by Allen & Unwin

ISBN: 9781760632151

RRP: £20.00

2 November 2017

Published by Allen & Unwin

ISBN: 9781760632137

RRP: £8.99

2 November 2017

Published by Allen & Unwin

ISBN: 9781760638849

June, 1348: the Black Death enters England through the port of Melcombe in the county of Dorsetshire. Unprepared for the virulence of the disease, and the speed with which it spreads, the people of the county start to die in their thousands.

In the estate of Develish, Lady Anne takes control of her people’s future – including the lives of two hundred bonded serfs. Strong, compassionate and resourceful, Lady Anne chooses a bastard slave, Thaddeus Thurkell, to act as her steward. Together, they decide to quarantine Develish by bringing the serfs inside the walls. With this sudden overturning of the accepted social order, where serfs exist only to serve their lords, conflicts soon arise. Ignorant of what is happening in the world outside, they wrestle with themselves, with God and with the terrible uncertainty of their futures.

Lady Anne’s people fear starvation but they fear the pestilence more. Who amongst them has the courage to leave the security of the walls?

And how safe is anyone in Develish when a dreadful event threatens the uneasy status quo…?


Wonderful and sweeping, with a fabulous sense of place and history
Kate Mosse on The Last Hours

An enthralling account of a calamitous time, and above all a wonderful testimony to the strength of the human spirit. I was caught from the first page.
Julian Fellowes on The Last Hours

A vividly-wrought and powerful story. With The Last Hours, Minette Walters has brought her impressive skill as a writer of psychological crime to create a dark and gripping depiction of Medieval England in the jaws of the Black Death.
Elizabeth Fremantle on The Last Hours

A staggeringly talented writer.

A seductive writer with an imagination that makes her dangerous to know
Sunday Express

Minette Walters is a master at building engrossing tales around a single, life-shattering event.
Washington Post

Atmosphere, imagination and narrative power of which few other writers are capable
The Times