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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars First Book in the Series
This is the first in a series of books written by Simon Beaufort and if you think the books are well written and well researched, you would be correct. Because Simon Beaufort is a pseudonym of Susanna Gregory, perhaps better know for the series of books featuring Matthew Bartholomew. I have never read a badly written or boring book by the author and I am sure this series...
Published on 7 Dec. 2006 by J. Chippindale

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable historical mystery
First Sentence: Sir Guibert of Apulia's head snapped up from the ground, and he was alert instantly as he heard the city outside his tent.

Sir Geoffrey Mappstone has come to the Holy City pas part of the Crusades. Before the army even reached the Holy Land, it became less about a noble Christian undertaking, than fighting, and amassing wealth and power...
Published on 8 Jan. 2009 by L. J. Roberts


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars First Book in the Series, 7 Dec. 2006
By 
J. Chippindale (England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This is the first in a series of books written by Simon Beaufort and if you think the books are well written and well researched, you would be correct. Because Simon Beaufort is a pseudonym of Susanna Gregory, perhaps better know for the series of books featuring Matthew Bartholomew. I have never read a badly written or boring book by the author and I am sure this series will be just as good.

It is late in the eleventh century and all men who call themselves Christians are being called to arms to join the Crusade and take Jerusalem from the Infidel. By the year 1100, Sir Geoffrey Mappestone is one of the few Crusaders who have survived the unbearable climate and the fighting to take the city.

On returning to the city after partaking in a patrol across the desert Sir Geoffrey is alerted when he hears a woman screaming. He discovers that a fellow knight and close friend has been murdered in a woman's bed chamber. But this is not the first murder of a knight in the city. Several priests have also been attacked.

Geoffrey's liege lord, Prince Tancred, orders Geoffrey to investigate the murders and it is not long before he find himself embroiled with some of the most dangerous men in Jerusalem. He also learns that some of his closest friends could be his deadliest enemies.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great debut novel of a new historical mystery series, 26 Nov. 1998
By A Customer
In 1100, the holy city of Jerusalem remains a fractured place even though the Crusaders have retaken the city back from the Infidel. Returning from a desert patrol to the city, Sir Geoffrey de Mappstone hears a woman's screams from the nearby Greek bakery. Accompanied by his Sergeant of Arms, Guy goes to investigate. They meet the frazzled woman, Melisande Mikelos, who informs him that there is a corpse in her home. He goes inside and finds the murdered body of John, a Norman knight.
Norman Prince Tancred assigns his vassal Geoffrey to investigate this murder and several similar ones. However, instead of uncovering a simple serial killer or even some twisted from of vengeance, Geoffrey finds a conspiracy to overturn the current precarious power structure of the city. As he continues to make inquiries, Geoffrey places himself in danger of becoming the next victim.
MURDER IN THE HOLY CITY, the first novel in what hopefully is a long series, is a brilliant historical mystery that brings home early twelfth century Jerusalem to the audience. The who-done-it is fun, but it is the motives of the various groups and daily life in the city that makes this a necessary novel for genre fans. Simon Beaufort, a historian at the University of Cambridge, turns history into a gourmet's delight.

Harriet Klausner
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable historical mystery, 8 Jan. 2009
By 
L. J. Roberts (Oakland, CA, USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
First Sentence: Sir Guibert of Apulia's head snapped up from the ground, and he was alert instantly as he heard the city outside his tent.

Sir Geoffrey Mappstone has come to the Holy City pas part of the Crusades. Before the army even reached the Holy Land, it became less about a noble Christian undertaking, than fighting, and amassing wealth and power. Geoffrey, in the employ of the Tancred, who is allied to the Patriarch the head of the Latin Church in the Holy Land, speaks several languages and is more interested in learning than fighting.

One of Geoffrey's fellow knights is murdered with a curved dagger. Other, seemingly unrelated victims follow, the common element being the dagger. As Geoffrey investigates, his suspicion falls upon a friend.

No matter the name under which she writes, Beaufort knows how to tell a good story and teach me a bit of history. She describes the complicated politics of the time and the different groups all trying to find their place in this conflicted land.

Geoffrey is an appealing character. He is realistically written being both intelligent and a solid soldier. I did enjoy the bathhouse scene and his comment about it being four years between baths.

In fact, what marks Beaufort is the quality of the writing, the depiction of life during the time, clear depth of research and the simple fact that it is a great story. I am delighted that this is only the first of the series as it means I've a number of wonderful books awaiting me.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Beaufort's series is wholly a winner!, 29 Jun. 2012
By 
Billy J. Hobbs "Bill Hobbs" (Tyler, TX USA) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
Simon Beaufort's "Murder in the Holy City" is the first in yet another historical mystery series--and it's a welcomed entry. Set in the early 1100s, it features Sir Geoffrey de Mappestone, an English man educated in France, and is now a knight on a crusade to JeRusalem, a city of great contention, dominated at this time by a consortium of religious interests, all eager to make their mark and lay claim to "their" city. Religious causes work in strange circumstances, sometimes.

However, religious and internecine strife aside, the city is caught up in a series of killings---two knights and three priests. One of the knights is a friend of Geoffrey, who was found stabbed to death in the home of a Greek widow. All appear to have been killed by the same jeweled dagger! Geoffrey takes the commission to investigate and uncovers the plot to destabilize what is already an unnerving scenario. Here, Beaufort's narrative, style, and literary skill take over.

This is an exciting "first of a series," as the author goes to great effort and detail--with some interesting glimpses of humor!--to portray the time, the place, and the characters. Beaufort's attention to detail--even if he does employ literary license liberally at times--is a good read. Sir Geoffrey is one protagonist who's got a good future!
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5.0 out of 5 stars I wasn't disappointed. The plot was good, 24 Aug. 2014
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This review is from: Murder in the Holy City: An 11th Century Mystery Set During the Crusades (A Sir Geoffrey Mappestone Mystery) (Hardcover)
Knowing this was the pseudonym of Susanna Gregory I knew this would be a corking book.I wasn't disappointed.The plot was good ,bringing in a strong likeable sleuth in Sir Geoffrey Mappestone.Though I had figured out the murderer halfway through ,it certainly didn't spoil a well thought out story.I look forward to reading the rest of the series.
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4.0 out of 5 stars I found the tale a little slow at first as all the characters are introduced and all the politics explained but the book was a w, 30 Sept. 2014
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This review is from: Murder in the Holy City: An 11th Century Mystery Set During the Crusades (A Sir Geoffrey Mappestone Mystery) (Hardcover)
The first in the Geoffrey Mappestone series.This story deals with a crusaders attempt to solve a number of murders in the the 11th century Holy city.I found the tale a little slow at first as all the characters are introduced and all the politics explained but the book was a well written good read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Murder in the Holy City, 2 Jan. 2013
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I have read others in this series and enjoyed them and was curious to see how the series started and am pleased to have obtained this the first book in that series. I look forward to reading it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Medieval fiction, 13 May 2015
By 
r a e cooper (Tottington Bury UK) - See all my reviews
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I love these books and wish they would write more. Humour and action.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A very promising start and eager to read more., 26 July 2015
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This was bought as a present and so far it's going down very well.
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