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Candle Flame: A novel of Mediaeval London featuring Brother Athelstan (A Brother Athelstan Medieval Mystery Book 13) by [Doherty, Paul]
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Candle Flame: A novel of Mediaeval London featuring Brother Athelstan (A Brother Athelstan Medieval Mystery Book 13) Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 49 customer reviews
Book 13 of 15 in A Brother Athelstan Medieval Mystery (15 Book Series)
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Product Description

About the Author

Paul Doherty studied History at Liverpool and Oxford Universities, and is now headmaster of a school in Essex. He is the author of more than eighty historical mysteries including the Hugh Corbett, Mathilde of Westminster and Canterbury Tales medieval mystery series.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1103 KB
  • Print Length: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Severn House Digital; First World Publication edition (1 July 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00KM2BMCG
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 49 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #81,838 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Kat Man Do TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 20 Mar. 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This has been an excellent last couple of years for lovers of the 'Sorrowful Mysteries' series. Short stories available on Kindle and three new novels of which this is the third in fairly short order. Rather like Michael Jecks series set in the earlier part of the 14th century (Sir Baldwin & Bailiff Puttock and the machinations of the Edwardian Court, the DeSpensers and Queen Isabella) the 'Sorrowful Mysteries' (with the diminutive dominican friar Athelstan and the redoubtable Sir John Cranston) are beginning to move inexorably towards a another critical point in 14th century history, that of the peasants revolt of 1381.

As is usual there is malice afoot in the Southwark runnels and stews and several of the Kings tax collectors and information gatherers are dead. Money is involved and the 'Great Community of the Realm' in the form of the Upright Men are beginning to flex their muscle in the home counties. Athelstan and Cranston are tasked with sorting out this mess and making sense of what has happened. In the meantime Athelstan's parishioners are up to their usual furtive necks in the shennanigans and get caught in the middle of what's going on - enough spoilers now, you'll need to buy the book to find out what happens.

Doherty in all his guises and psuedonyms is one of my goto historical mystery writers and I remain aghast that the 'Sorrowful Mysteries' has never been picked up as a TV series. All of the books are wickedly plotted and rich in almost Dickensian detail of the life of 1370's and 80's London.
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By Keen Reader TOP 50 REVIEWER on 25 Jun. 2014
Format: Hardcover
In this, which I think is the thirteenth Brother Athelstan mystery, the medieval sleuth and man of God finds himself called upon by the Regent, John of Gaunt once again. In the previous Brother Athelstan mystery, The Straw Men, it was becoming more evident that the Upright Men, those who call themselves the protectors of the community against the rule of the lords, are getting stronger and have support in those in high places. In this story, Gaunt’s tax collectors themselves are attacked – brutally murdered at a tavern, The Candle-Flame. Gaunt demands Brother Athelstan find who is responsible.

I love these books; I’ve read every one avidly, and they just keep getting better. Brother Athelstan is a long-suffering peaceful man whose ability to sniff out murderers and malcontents makes him invaluable to his masters, but he’d really rather be left alone with his ragtag community. The fourteenth-century London scenes seem to roll off the page – sound, smell, sight and everyday horror that were so taken for granted then seem to leap out in front of the reader and shock and astound, as well as entertain. The character of John of Gaunt is truly frightening in these books; a man who will brook no opposition and has a way of making things happen, I have no doubt believing that he would really have been like that.

As always in these books, the mystery is such that the reader is kept in the dark till right at the end, when Brother Athelstan patiently puts us out of our misery. His ability to move through the darkest nights and murderous byways makes Brother Athelstan a treasure – and one that die-hard fans look forward to reading more about in books to come.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I really am missing the interplay between the good brother and Sir John. The focus was on the good brother and Sir John was left out for the most part. He had no real hand in the solving of the mystery. That too was important to the early books in the series. Sir John and his marvelous wineskin should be put back into the central story line.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The 13th volume of the fantastic Brother Athelstan series is certainly another one to treasure.
As always Paul Doherty has managed to bring London in the late 14th Century vividly to life with it's own feel and atmosphere of these medieval times.
The storytelling is again of the highest quality and the mystery itself is really fantastic and exciting from start to finish, and so making this book a real page-turner.
The story itself is set in February in the year AD 1381 and the story really begins when the Regent, John of Gaunt, is demanding ever increasing taxes, so much so that people will spark into flame and total resentment.
This unrest will result in a bloody massacre at a Southwark tavern, The Candle-Flame, in which nine people are killed, including Gaunt's tax collectors and their military escorts.
And so Brother Athelstan is ordered by John of Gaunt to investigate these killings, because not only has Gaunt's treasure been stolen, the Regent also believes that there's a French spy active along the Thames, while at the same time there's a professional assassin, Beowulf, on the loose who has sworn vengeance against Gaunt and his minions.
This is another top-notch murder mystery which is packed with great storytelling and excitement, making this Candle Flame "A Bright Light Tale"!
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