After returning from an errand, Chris finds his master dead, just like the other apothecaries. With his future hanging in the balance now he is without a home and master, Chris discovers puzzles that have been left for him, ones that once decoded, will hold the key to the mystery of the cult that is supposedly behind the attacks. The deeper he digs, the more danger he finds himself in as the murderers set their sights on him.
What worked: When Chris discovers the real reason behind the deaths, I was surprised like him. I didn't see that coming, and it certainly provided an unexpected twist, which is always fun.
Chris is a pretty independent main character, but he is helped throughout the book by his best friend, Tom. I liked their friendship as the boys stood by each other despite the dangers.
One other thing that bothered me, and is a good reminder to me as a writer, was too much description. There were large chunks of description (and backstory) that I tended to either skim or skip entirely because it bogged down the story in places
Overall, I'd give it a 4 out of 5. It was an interesting read with likable characters.