In THE DEADLIEST LIE, Miriam tells her aunt why she studies alchemy:
I want to make it safe to study metals. If I can make an apparatus for experimenting with metals safely, it might prevent the sicknesses that are afflicting our alchemists. And not just the alchemists but the dyers in our textile factories. They too are showing the same deadly symptoms. I think they’re being poisoned by the metals in either the dyes or the mordants that set the dyes on the fabrics.
But there’s another reason too. Judah, the man Miriam is in love with, studies alchemy. But as she explains:
Papa would never permit him in our home. First, Judah is a bastard. No one, including Judah himself, knows anything about his father. And second, he is neither a Roman citizen nor a member of any other privileged class, so he’s subject to the poll tax, a humiliating tax on accountable males, which could reduce him to slavery overnight. So, Papa wants me to have nothing to do with him. To Papa, he’s just another bastard with no future.
THE DEADLIEST LIE will not only take you and Miriam into the underbelly of Alexandria during the Roman occupation on a maddening search for a set of high-states alchemical documents, but it will thrust you into the quandary of Miriam’s life, whether to obey her father or follow her own heart.
The Historical Novel Society praises THE DEADLIEST LIE as “finely crafted and fascinating historical fiction,” Readers’ Favorite awarded it 5 of 5 stars, and Wiki Ezvid selected it as one of the nine most riveting mysteries set in the distant past. To watch the book trailer, click here.