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If I had not seen the tv series....,
This review is from: Brother Cadfael's Penance: 20: The Twentieth Chronicle of Brother Cadfael (Cadfael Chronicles) (Paperback)
this would not have been a book I enjoyed reading. It was my first try at reading a Cadfael book, and it will probably be my last. The characters come alive because you are inserting them with the tv series images, but in truth are not so interesting. The storyline is more a linear development than a plot, very few surprises there.
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Initial post: 31 Jul 2010 20:07:46 BDT
Welsh Bookworm says:
I would suggest that you would have enjoyed Cadfael books more if you hadn't started with the last one in the series of 20! It makes a great deal more sense if you know more of the background and relationships of the characters and the historical period, which you can gain by reading the other books (or at least some of them) first. Much of the pleasure from reading this book is seeing characters whom you already 'know' developing and depening thieir relationships.
Also, some of the characters in the TV versions are badly cast and portrayed - particularly Beringar - so it can be hard to fit preconceptions from watching the TV into the original books. Please try again with an earlier book - perhaps One Corpse Too Many or St Peter's Fair, both of which are full of surprises. You could even try something novel and begin with the first one - A Morbid Taste for Bones.
In reply to an earlier post on 1 Dec 2010 20:40:56 GMT
Yes, I agree. You must start at the very beginning and give these books a chance. If after say three or four you reach the same conclusion, then fair enough, but to read the last first hardly does the series justice. I think The Virgin in the Ice is my favourite story.
Welsh Bookworm is correct about the casting and despite three attempts, the character of Hugh Beringar never was cast correctly and neither was Cadfael. Though the excellent Sir Derek Jacobi is a fine actor and did very well, I yearned to see Philip Madoc play the part but guess his name was not a big enough draw for TV audiences and perhaps Anthony Hopkins was too expensive, or not available, if indeed he was approached at all.
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