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This immensely appealing launch of a new series is set in seventh-century Ireland, which in Tremayne's rendering is a golden age of enlightenment and of total equality for women. Such narrative stumbling blocks as an abundance of stereotypical characters and much more dynastic trivia, ecclesiastical and secular history than can be absorbed are offset by the vigorous, intriguing puzzle posed by a series of murders and by Sister Fidelma, the tale's brilliant and beguiling heroine. An ecclesiastical conclave to settle major divisions between the Roman and Celtic branch of Christianity is held at Whitby in 664. When a major proponent of the Celtic way, the Abbess of Kildare, is murdered, Sister Fidelma, a fellow Celtic follower and legally trained scholar, is asked to investigate. She is paired with her ideological opposite, Brother Eadulf, on the Roman side, who is shrewd, highly educated and immediately smitten with the outspoken sister. The intellectual and physical sparks that are ignited between these two clerics (in an age before celibacy) light up the pages, and when two monks are killed and the malevolence thickens, the book becomes difficult to put down. It is reassuring to read that Sister Fidelma and Brother Eadulf will reappear... next time in Rome.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Peter Tremayne is the fiction pseudonym of a well-known authority on the ancient Celts, who has utilised his knowledge of the Brehon law system and 7th-Century Irish society to create a new concept in detective fiction.
If you haven't met Sister Fidelna, Brehon, yet - then you've been missing out. I love a good murder mystery and I love a good historical novel and I get them both in Fidelma. Read morePublished on March 14 2004 by Susanna Duffy
I purchased this book via "used" selection. I am an Anglo junkie including reading history of early Brits, i.e. Celts. Read morePublished on Oct. 18 2003 by Dianne Foster
I just finished reading this book, it was rather short, but I found that I enjoyed it quite a bit. The historical aspects were interesting and unique. Read morePublished on July 9 2002 by Lora Friedenthal
This book wasn't too bad for a first effort. The era is an interesting one, and there is some pretty good history here if you're interested in early Christianity and Ancient... Read morePublished on June 4 2002 by Shirley Schwartz
The historical setting of this book with the conflict between Celtic and Roman Christianity was intriguing and realistic. You get a genuine sense for the time and place. Read morePublished on Feb. 11 2002 by K. Eames
My first impression of this series was that the books were interesting, entertaining, and the balance between mystery and history done fairly well. Read morePublished on Jan. 17 2002 by Stoneheart
I first picked up the first edition to this book which is The Subtle Serpent which is also a very good book. I picked it up not realizing what it was actually about. Read morePublished on July 18 2001 by Holly
The setting, a religious counsel in the year 664 C.E. gathered to debate conflicts between the Church of Ireland and the Church of Rome, promises much. Read morePublished on April 26 2001