‘m not totally sure what to say about A Morbid Taste for Bones, the first in the Brother Cadfael mysteries. I expected it to be medieval and good…and it was both of those things!
So. Brother Cadfael is that particular breed of Benedictine monk with whom people are forever sitting down with over a cup of ale (and a haunch of venison, and a trencher of bread and sundry other medival nommables) and shooting the shit, as it were. Having come to the monk-mobile late in life as a sort of austere retirement home, Cadfael has a rich history as a doer-of-various-things-(and-women).
What with this being the first of some 20 books, it looks like Brother Cadfael’s silver years will be punctuated with more than the ordinary number of murders. Like, at least 20. Morbid gets off to a quiet start with some young monk having visions, and a cohort of brothers hieing off to a Welsh village to collect the bones of a forgotten saint on account of said visions. It isn’t until about half-way through that the lord of said village is found murdered and his daughter’s immigrant-beloved is accused but then escapes and Brother Cadfael has to put all of his pre-monkal wisdom to use sussing out the real killer so that the upstanding but landless young Saxon can return and marry his fiery sweetheart. Awesome, right?
To be honest, this is the sort of ramble fantastic that I could read for ages. There could have been nary a murder and I would have happily tottled behind while Brother Cadfael mediated between his relic-hungry prior and the lusty Welsh villagers. Peters is that good. And from the looks of things (via Colleen, who was my gateway drug into the Cadfaelia), she only gets better.
Also, choice exerpt from the back: ‘Soothing, but no shortage of mayhem.’ – Observer
I could not say it better myself. Eight caterpillars.