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The Killer of Pilgrims (Matthew Bartholomew Chronicles) Paperback – August 1, 2011


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Product Details

  • Series: Matthew Bartholomew Chronicles (Book 16)
  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group; Reprint edition (August 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 075154258X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0751542585
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 1.4 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #919,470 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. British author Gregory again displays her mastery of complex storytelling and period detail in her 16th mystery set in 14th-century Cambridge, the home of doctor, instructor, and corpse examiner Matthew Bartholomew (after 2009's A Vein of Deceit). Amid an atmosphere of increasing tension between Cambridge's colleges and the less affluent hostels, Bartholomew must identify the killer of taverner John Drax, who was initially believed the victim of an accident, until the physician found a fatal stab wound on his body. For many, the book's pleasures will stem less from the resolution of the various interlocking puzzles than from the utterly convincing portrait of an England still recovering from the great pestilence of the previous decade, complete with familiar complaints about the timeliness of home contractors' work and avaricious people seeking to profit from the tragic plague. Unlike in many other long-running series, newcomers will find nothing inaccessible in this installment. (Nov.) (c)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"Gregory again displays her mastery of complex storytelling and period detail. . . . Unlike in many other long-running series, newcomers will find nothing inaccessible in this installment."  —Publishers Weekly starred review


"A perfect choice for historical fans who miss Ellis Peters."  —Library Journal on A Vein of Deceit

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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I enjoy the characters in the book and they make me smile.
Carl
I appreciate the great historical detail the author uses and she has an obvious understanding of the time, its people and its customs.
J.I. Black
I love Susanna Gregory's Matthew Bartholomew historical mystery series.
S. Schwartz

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By S. Schwartz on November 22, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I love Susanna Gregory's Matthew Bartholomew historical mystery series. Each new book is great and each plot is very different from the previous books in the series. This book is set in Cambridge in the winter of 1358. Cambridge is undergoing a cold and miserable winter, and there is still plenty of unrest and rivalry between "town and gown". Then citizens are being murdered and robbed. Matthew and Michael know that there are evil forces at work in their city, and they need to find the source in order to avoid a huge blowup in the city. I love the mix of true historical figures and Ms. Gregory's fictional characters, and I love the fast-paced plots that are de rigeur for all the books in this series. I never tire of this wonderful series.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By travelswithadiplomat on August 23, 2011
Format: Paperback
It is fairly obvious from my previous reviews of Gregory's novels that I consider her the finest medieval mystery author of her generation. Any Batholomew or Chaloner novel results in any current book being tossed aside as the latest literary mystery from the pen of the pseudonymal Gregory demands immediate attention. No other living author gets six stars from this reviewer; no other author quite such enthusiastic recommendations to friends and colleagues alike. The reason is that Gregory, aside from the prolific nature of her pen, each and every time creates mystery that is unfathomable. Multiple threads abound, some tied, some not. Victims are startling, murderers can be one or many. Politics and history walk hand in hand, the authenticity of Cambridge is carefully researched, the characters taken from real people, the action a plausible interpretation of actual events in fourteenth century England. At the heart of it all, two likeable characters. Senior Proctor Michael and his Corpse Examiner, Matthew Bartholomew make a sleuthing pair to rival Holmes and Watson at their finest. The spray of supporting Michaelhouse characters such as Rougham, Langelee, Agatha, Cynric, William et al. are a joy to read about.
Enough of the effusive praise. It is well merited by this author.
So..."The Killer of Pilgrims"...we have a misinformed and psychotic killer stealing signacula in an attempt to gain a place at God's table. Many readers will know of medieval pardoners through the bad press of Chaucer, and Gregory adds to this with the mendacious, grasping character of Fen and his two fallen nuns. As our collector of baubles grows more desperate so a killer of pilgrims is born, residing in Cambridge.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By J.I. Black on September 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've read all the books in the Matthew Bartholomew series and I have enjoyed each one of them. I appreciate the great historical detail the author uses and she has an obvious understanding of the time, its people and its customs. She has created a very likable main character in Dr. Bartholomew and his companion, Brother Michael, is equally fun to read about. However, after more than a dozen installments in the series, the reader becomes aware of certain patterns in her writing and plots that do take away from the enjoyment of the stories. It seems that after reading all of the series' books, I can already tell who will be the villain/good guy/red herring in each of the stories within the first few chapters. The books don't much follow a central thread, so each story is basically a stand-alone that could mostly be read out of context and out of series.
However, despite a few minor issues, I still thoroughly enjoyed the book and I will continue to read all future Matthew Bartholomew books as soon as they become available.
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By Cinnamon on July 11, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Very interesting look at the place and role of pilgrimages during the times. It was also fun to know what Matthew had forgotten, when it was a really important tribute to his friend. Early universities were excellent places for a good mystery.
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By Carl on May 26, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I enjoy the characters in the book and they make me smile. Even though it is a murder mystery it is easy to read.
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