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Book Log 7/2017 - Ellis Peters: A Morbid Taste for Bones - Cadfael #1

Morbid Taste for BonesI've seen all of the Cadfael TV shows, of course, so Derek Jacobi is my default Cadfael and it’s gard to get that image and voice out of my head when reading what came before. This is the first book in the series that I've read, though I'm familiar with the story, of course. Cadfael, Welshman and late adopter of the Benedictine habit is a man happy in his own skin, content with tending the abbey's vegetable garden and brewing healing potions from herbs. He's the nearest thing to a medieval forensic scientist and because he spent close to fifty years in the world before retiring to the cloister, he has a wider knowledge than most of the brothers in Shrewsbury.

The abbey is short of funds and it seems that if they can acquire suitable relics as the focus for pilgrimage, then their finances and their standing might both take a turn for the better. When one of the young monks has a vision, an expedition to find and recover the bones of Saint Winifred from the small Welsh Village of Gwytherin includes Brother Cadfael, a native Welsh speaker.

The villagers haven't exactly looked after the Saint's resting place but they are still reluctant to allow some English 'foreigners' to dig her up and take her away. When the leader of the opposition id shot with an arrow and the wrong man is blamed for it, Cadfael begins a quiet investigation which not only catches the killer, but smooths the path of true love - twice.


A word of advice- read them in sequence.

We now live in 'Cadfael country' of course! :o)
You haven't read Cadfael before! Well, if you liked this one, you are in for a treat. As cmcmck says, it's best to read them in order because the lives of the recurring characters progress through the series so though the mystery is complete in each book, the ongoing story is also interesting to follow.
I liked the Cadfael books, but I found eventually I could predict who was innocent simply by whether they were in love...
Well, yes. I'm familiar with the stories as shown on TV and there's always the sweet romantic angle.
Read them in order yes, but also do not binge on them, they are best read well spaced out.
blue eyes

April 2017



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