The Chatelaine: Unabridged edition

By Kate Heartfield, Read by Beth Eyre

Winner of the Aurora Award for Best Novel, 2019

Hell is empty and all the demons are here.

The Chatelaine has come.

The year is 1328 and Bruges is under siege by the Chatelaine of Hell and her army of chimeras – —creatures forged in the deep fires of the Hellbeast.

At night, revenants crawl over the walls and bring plague and grief to this city of widows. Margriet de Vos learns she’s a widow herself when her good-for-nothing husband comes home dead from the war. But he didn’t come back for her. The revenant who was her husband pulls a secret treasure of coins and weapons from under his floorboards and goes back through the mouth of the beast called Hell.

Margriet killed her first soldier when she was eleven. She’s buried six of her seven children. She’ll do anything for her daughter, even if it means raiding Hell itself to get her inheritance back.

Margriet’s daughter Beatrix is haunted by a dead husband of her own, and blessed, or cursed, with an enchanted distaff that allows her to control the revenants and see the future.

Together with a transgender man-at-arms who has unfinished business with the Chatelaine, a traumatised widow with a giant water-powered forgehammer at her disposal, and a wealthy alderman’s wife who escapes Bruges with her children, Margriet and Beatrix forge a raiding party the likes of which Hell has never seen…

Format: Audio-Book
Release Date: 20 Jul 2023
Pages: None
ISBN: 978-0-00-856783-5
Detailed Edition: Unabridged edition
Kate Heartfield is the author of the Sunday Times bestselling The Embroidered Book, the Aurora-winning novel Armed in Her Fashion, and the Nebula-shortlisted novella Alice Payne Arrives, along with dozens of other stories. Her interactive fiction projects The Road to Canterbury and The Magician’s Workshop were shortlisted for the Nebula in game writing. She lives in Canada.Visit her at or on Twitter @kateheartfield.


”'The novel is written with arresting detail and challenges literary tropes about women. Its roster includes half a dozen complex female characters and one trans male character, all of them captivating, sympathetic, repulsive, flawed, dangerous, selfless, determined, and damaged. They and Heartfield's powerful battle scenes make this well worth the price of admission” - Publishers Weekly, starred review


”'Armed in Her Fashion is Kate Heartfield’s debut novel, and what a strange, compelling, genre-bending debut it is. Part horror, part fantasy, part history, and part epic, it combines all of its elements into a commentary on gender, power, and patriarchy…enormously fun…” - Liz Bourke,

‘An absorbing novel … Heartfield sustains a fine balance between history and fantasy’Guardian -

‘Where fantasy and history meet … an entertaining and dark read’Stylist -

‘Reminded me in places of Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell. I loved the depth of characterisation and the feel of the magic … beautifully written’Elizabeth Chadwick, bestselling and award-winning author of The Summer Queen -

‘Richly imagined and skilfully told, The Embroidered Book is an intricate and spellbinding tale’JJA Harwood, Sunday Times bestselling author of The Shadow in the Glass -

‘The Embroidered Book is superb from its opening scene to its heartbreaking end … Politics, magic, love, and sacrifice compete on equal terms in a sweeping, absolutely splendid epic novel about two sisters and familial love. If you like historical feminist fantasy, you will love The Embroidered Book’Lisbeth Campbell, author of The Vanished Queen -

‘Sacrifice, family, dreams, and deep, dark magic, The Embroidered Book is a triumph’Julie E. Czerneda, author of The Gossamer Mage -