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A Gift of Sanctuary (Owen Archer Mystery) [Hardcover]

Candace Robb
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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Book Description

5 Nov 1998 Owen Archer Mystery
The sixth medieval whodunnit to feature Owen Archer, one-eyed former soldier and occasional sleuth, opens as he accompanies a pilgrimage to Wales. His task is to recruit archers to send to France, but he must also investigate the threat of an uprising against the English, led by a Welshman.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: William Heinemann Ltd; 1st ed. edition (5 Nov 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 043400295X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0434002955
  • Product Dimensions: 25.4 x 18 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 211,099 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"Robb deftly interweaves a complex story of love, passion and murder into the troubled and tangled fabric of Welsh history, fashioning a rich and satisfying novel" (Publishers Weekly)

"This compelling historical mystery lives up to the standard set by the master medievalist Ellis Peters" (Booklist) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Book Description

The sixth novel in the compelling Owen Archer Series --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A well written book 2 May 2004
Candace Robb's Owen Archer Mystery series is a treat which should not be missed by readers who are fond of fiction set in mediaeval times. She has produced another gripping story in 'A Gift of Sanctuary' - sixth book in her Owen Archer Mystery series. (Till date the eight titles published in the series are; The Apothecary Rose, The Lady Chapel, The Nun's Tale, The King's Bishop, The Riddle of St. Leonard's, A Gift of Sanctuary, A Spy for the Redeemer and The Cross-legged Knight.)
Owen Archer, one eyed ex-soldier and part time spy in the 14th century England, accompanies a pilgrimage to the city of St.David's. Accompanied by Geoffrey Chaucer, he is to recruit archers for the Duke of Lancaster. His hidden agenda is to ascertain the loyalty of Duke's steward at Cydweli. Candace Robb weaves the story well. Right from the beginning one gets involved in the characters and their struggles. Owen's self-doubt about his own loyalties as he returns to his homeland - Wales. Sir Robert and Brother Michaelo's inner journey into their past, their regrets and repentance. Chaucer's forays into poetry. And all this successfully knitted into a tight tale of murder, suspense and politics backed by excellent research in the time period by the author. Though a reader like me who does not have any previous knowledge of the Welsh history gets a little lost in the maze of Welsh names and historical references, it does not detract heavily from the overall satisfaction of a reading a well written book. Lovers of this genre may like to check out 'Chronicles of Brother Cadfael' by Ellis Peters and the master piece of this genre, Umberto Eco's 'The Name of the Rose'.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not as enjoyable as earlier ones in the series 16 Dec 2006
I didn't enjoy this as much as the earlier Owen Archer novels, I think probably because it did not feature the usual York characters and settings. None of the SW Wales characters really grabbed me and this was rather a chore.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Gift of a Good Book 29 Nov 2004
By J. Chippindale TOP 500 REVIEWER
Spring 1369, Owen Archer, one-time soldier and spy is out recruiting archers for the Duke of Lancaster, but he is also on a mission to find out whether the Duke's own steward is betraying him to the Welsh rebels. Trouble goes before them and a body in the Duke's livery is left at the city gates.
All of Candace Robb's novels have great appeal to those interested in the medieval period and this one is no exception. Owen Archer is a believable hero and the area of York in which he lived is not too far from my own home which lends a extra dimension to the novels from me.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Somewhat disappointing and difficult to follow. 21 Aug 2001
By A Customer
This Owen Archer mystery is set in Wales. Intriguing as that sounds, Owen Archer is without his principle cast of family and friends, namely, Lucie Wilton, Magda Digby, Archbishop Thoresby, Bess and Jasper de Melton. Alone with Sir Robert and Brother Michaelo, he returns to his homeland for a pilgrimage and to recruit archers for his King. He does an admirable job with the characters he has to work with, but this book does not have the same feel of the previous mysteries. If one cares more for reading a history of Wales than of a thrilling mystery, it is a good book. If the reverse is true, I found it disappointing.
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1.0 out of 5 stars The only disappointing Owen Archer book 19 Oct 2013
I found this book very difficult to follow, mainly on account of the greater references to Welsh and English political figures and the history of the tension between England and Wales. Keeping track of all the Welsh names was a chore. Candace Robb's books work best when they avoid the national politics of the day and concentrate on the York characters: I missed Lucie, Jasper, Thoresby, Magda and Bess - and of course the streets of York which I know well. Taking Owen and transplanting him to another place, even if it is the land of his birth, did not work at all for me. It is not often that I give up on a book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Candace Robb's writing never fails to please 22 April 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This story woven around life in the life of a spy and an apothecaries apprentice in mediaeval times, is both entertaining and informative.
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