Book Review: One Corpse Too Many by Ellis Peters Four Stars

Book Review: One Corpse Too Many (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael #2) by Ellis Peters

Four Stars

(Third Reading: 2016)

“No one can do more than choose his own road according to his conscience, and bear the consequences of his choice.”

The more I read science fiction, the more I appreciate well-written historical fiction. The Cadfael mysteries are historical fiction at its best.

“In all my life and all my fighting I’ve fought for only one king.”

One Corpse introduces us to the historical setting and culture more than A Morbid Taste for Bones. It also introduces Hugh Berengar and other characters who will add depth and complications to Brother Cadfael’s retirement from the world and its troubles. Somehow, the troubles keep finding him. That’s half the fun.

“All the things of the wild have their proper uses, only misuse makes them evil.”

A word about religion: it is difficult to portray what people, especially monastics, felt or thought a thousand years ago. Their inner life was animated by a different world view and set of assumptions from moderns, even modern Christians. While having no apparent Christian perspective, Edith Pargeter knew Wales and medieval history. The reader benefits from her other time, almost-other-world perspective.

“God will require an accounting.”