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A Friar's Bloodfeud [Paperback]

Michael Jecks

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Book Description

June 5 2006 Knights Templar Mysteries (Headline) (Book 20)
Bailiff Simon Puttock's servant, Hugh, has been granted leave to look after his wife Constance and help raise her child. One day she is attacked and raped by a gang of men at her home. She sees her son being murdered and her man Hugh struck down before she is killed and the house set on fire. When Simon and Sir Baldwin Furnshill, Keeper of the King's Peace, arrive on the scene, the cottage has burned to the ground and the body of the child lies outside. Inside there is a woman's torso, badly burned, but no remains of Hugh. The fire raged so fiercely, all believe Hugh died inside. However, things are not so simple, and not only does Simon vow revenge, there are dark forces lurking which will cause no end of mischief and bloodshed.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Headline (June 5 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0755323009
  • ISBN-13: 978-0755323005
  • Product Dimensions: 17.1 x 11.7 x 3.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 259 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #724,743 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Despite myriad characters and rapid, often cumbersome scene changes, Jecks's 17th medieval historical (after 2005's The Butcher of St. Peters's) paints a vivid and bloody panorama of Edward II's "war-scarred kingdom." In 1324, rival landowners battle for property and power, and Keeper of the King's Peace Sir Baldwin de Furnshill is reluctantly drawn into the conflict when the family of his neighbor, Hugh, a humble moorland shepherd, is found butchered and burned by unknown assailants. This tragedy follows the rape and torture of Lady Lucy of Meeth and her servant, leading Baldwin to suspect the involvement of ruthless Hugh Despenser (an ally of the king) and his fearsome steward, Sir Geoffrey Servington. Opposing this land-grab by Edward's surrogates is a third Hugh, Lord Hugh de Courtenay, also with powerful allies in knights Sir Odo de Bordeaux and Sir John Sully. Nervously observing all this carnage is shadowy renegade Friar Humphrey, who's ostensibly caring for an elderly priest, but is caught in a dilemma of his own making. Despite multiple subplots, Baldwin's perseverance leads to a just resolution.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.


"Nicely detailed and tightly argued, with involving and memorable characters. The whole series belongs in any collection wherehistoricals are popular."

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Amazon.com: 4.9 out of 5 stars  8 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just as Good as the Rest July 21 2006
By J. Chippindale - Published on Amazon.com
For those readers who are familiar with Michael Jecks books, this one is just as good as all the rest. For those who have not read Michael Jecks, but like historical novels, particularly about medieval England, you are in for all real treat.

The two main characters in the books are Sir Baldwin de Furnshill and Bailiff Simon Puttock. Sir Baldwin is an ex Crusader knight, who has managed to escape the wrath of the French King who ordered the destruction of the Order and all of its members.

Sir Baldwin is now the head of the family manor after the death of his brother and is also Keeper of the King's Peace in Devon.

Word reaches Simon that a gang of men have broken into the house of his servant Hugh and attacked the family. When Simon reaches the cottage he find it burnt to the ground and the bodies already buried. It would seem that Hugh must have perished in a dreadful accident, but Simon and Sir Baldwin begin to suspect that there is much more to it than that
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More Murder and Mayhem in Merrie Old England! May 13 2009
By Michael OConnor - Published on Amazon.com
Murder most foul raises its ugly head once again in Michael Jecks' ongoing 'Knights Templar' series but this time the loss is a personal one for the team of Furnshill and Puttock. Puttock's former servant, Hugh, his wife and son have been slaughtered and other Iddesleigh residents terrorized by unknown villains. As the Keeper of the King's Peace and his old friend and their wives journey to the scene of the crime to investigate, the reader is plunged into yet another entertaining medieval murder mystery.

As events turn out, Hugh's death is apparently wrapped up in the ongoing duel of wits between two competing manors. Discovering just who the murderers are and how the whole puzzle falls together takes up the book's 500 pages, a task not made easier as bodies pile up.

A FRIAR'S BLOODFEUD is vintage Jecks. His ability to construct intricate storylines that have the reader frantically turning page after page, his wide-ranging knowledge of medieval England and, most importantly, his ability to construct multi-dimensional characters are all in evidence.

As much as I have enjoyed the 'Knights Templar' series, I also find myself coming away from the stories with new insights about humanity circa 1300. Reading A FRIAR'S BLOODFEUD left me appalled at the casual brutality with which the 'haves' of medieval England treated the 'have nots.' Though they were knights, the conduct of the two opposing masters of Fishleigh and Monkleigh was reprehensible but probably typical of those times.

In any case, Furnshill and Puttock triumph in the end but you'll have to read A FRIAR'S BLOODFEUD to find out who did it and why. Along the way, you'll be treated to another marvelous, insightful and wonderfully entertaining journey through medieval England. Highly recommended.
4.0 out of 5 stars Petite and petty warfare between lords ravages like a storm. May 22 2010
By I should be at the gym - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
In this the 20th of the Knights Templar Mysteries of Devon-based writer Michael Jecks, we watch in dread--along with the protagonists Sir Baldwin de Furnshill, Keeper of the King's Peace, and Bailiff Simon Puttock--as Sir Odo, who serves a vassal of Lord Hugh de Courtnay (a powerful lord in several of Jecks's tales), and Sir Geoffrey, a Despenser man, escalate their intra-county cold war into something raw and fierce that carelessly drags into its cruelty the lives of innocents, as such petite and petty wars did 1,000s of times during the Middle Ages in Britain and Europe. Most troubling of all, the clash of these two men and their machinations engulf Hugh, Simon's servant. It is up to Baldwin and Simon, along with Baldwin's servant Edgar, to work to salvage a vestige of justice from the harsh events spinning out of control. But even as our heroes become the most clear-eyed center of a storm whirling about them, they uncover shocking realities that rest behind the Odo-Geoffrey feud, and are faced with the reality that in war, justice that they rightly cherish so dearly can be messy and come from unexpected quarters.
5.0 out of 5 stars The entire Knights Templar series is riveting and captivating. Feb. 25 2013
By Jack - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
To have your imagination captured after the first novel and continue to be immersed in the characters and plots throughout the series of novels is both amazingly unexpected and intellectualy satisfying. A master work by a mystery master.,
5.0 out of 5 stars HISTORY Feb. 13 2013
By Mary Husted - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
i love to read about the past History. True these are fiction but written very well. Of course the 'Templar' Knights are very true. So the way that Mr Jecks writes makes for very good reading.

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