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The Devil You Know
Mike Carey
Whodunnit? Murder in Mystery Manor
Anthony E. Zuiker
One Corpse Too Many - Ellis Peters 3.75, but let's round it to four stars!
Not as impressive as the first novel in the series (which I highly recommend) this second adventure of brother Cadfael is still a great read. The story happens mostly outdoors, in the area surrounding the abbey, which allows the reader to familiarize themselves with both the abbey itself and the area around Shrewsbury. This is perfect for those who will continue the series.
The setting of the story is also quite interesting. A war of succession and the death toll is carries are an original backdrop to this mystery novel and provide a reminder that all was not chivalry and maidens in hill-top castles in medieval times.
On the down side, is the "mystery" itself. Unlike in the first novel, the resolution of the crimes seems like an afterthought to the rest of the story. In this regards, One Corpse Too Many felt more like a thriller (will they make it?, will they get caught?) than a mystery novel. The very resolution and detection were hurriedly dealt with in the last few pages and made the protagonist seem more Columbo than Sherlock Holmes.
Still, a very well written historic fiction well worth reading.