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The Confession of Brother Haluin [Large Print] [Hardcover]

Ellis Peters
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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Book Description

July 1989 Ulverscroft Large Print
Eighteen years before, confesses Brother Haluin, he had been responsible for the death of the girl he loved and the baby she was to bear. Now, after a near-miraculous escape from death, he wants nothing more than to beg the forgiveness of Bertrade's mother, Adelais de Clary, and do penance for his sins. But Haluin's mission brings death in its wake, for Bertrade de Clary's secrets were not hers alone and, even now, the revelation of them would bring shame and condemnation. Brother Cadfael, sent to nurse Haluin, turns detective once again with a murderer to bring to justice.
--This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

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From Publishers Weekly

The worldly-wise and compassionate Brother Cadfael makes a welcome, 15th appearance. On his deathbed, Brother Haluin confesses to the abbot and Brother Cadfael that 18 years previously he had fallen in love with Bertrade de Clary, whose mother had forbidden their marriage. The girl had later died as a result of herbs he had given her mother, Adelais de Clary, to abort their baby. Haluin unexpectedly recovers from his fall, however, and he now is determined to make a pilgrimage to the girl's tomb. But when he and Brother Cadfael arrive at Hales, they find Adelais de Clary strangely indifferent and no tomb for Bertrade at the church. Haluin insists on traveling to Elford, the chief seat of the de Clarys, in search of Beltrade's final resting place. The two monks find more than the tomb there, and on their homeward journey through Staffordshire they encounter forbidden love, a hastily arranged marriage, violent emotions and murder. It is up to Brother Cadfael to untangle the threads that bind the past to the present to avert another tragedy. Though the plot is somewhat obvious, Peters knows her period well and does not strike one false note in this thoroughly entertaining medieval mystery.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.


Gripping and knowledgeable The Spectator --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Good in this series Feb. 10 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The confessions of Brother Haluin is another in ellis peters series of mystery tales set in a Benedictine monastery In Civil War England in the late 1130's and 40's. the main characters are Brother Cadfael, a former Crusader who enetered the monastery late in life[age 40] his chief nemisis Prior Robert tennat[who is a strict by the book prior] ,the Priors ferret like assistant,brother Jerome, and the Abbot,Radulfus,who stands above the fray[and always sides with Cadfael] Cadfeal is a renown herbalist,and is forever off helping some sick or downtrodden individual. He has a herb garden where he is able to get a respite,and where some of the more intersting dialogue occurs. Hugh Beringer is the Sherrif of the Shire{he was introduced in the second book, one corspe too many]and Cadfaels staunch ally and dearest friend{Cadfael is godfather to The Beringers son, Giles}. Cadfael, by virtue of his long stint abroad, is far more worldly then his fellows, and by default is an ametuer sleuth. In this volume, the deep winter has decended upon the town of Shrewsbury. the heavy snows are imperelling the roofs of the monastery enclosure, and some monks are snt, in shifts[due to the intense cold] to repair the problem.Brother Haluin,a calligrapher of the highest order[and perpetual penitent] has an accident, and confesses what he believes is a deathbed confession to the Abbot and Brother Cadfeal. He recovers, though mangled for life, and sets out on a pligrimage to make amends for his wrongs, and of course, Cadfael accompanies him...things,of course ,do not turn out quite as expected. ZThis is a fine addition to the series,the writing is still fine, the scenes of 12th century england gripped in a mad civil war are well done, and the deep, profound wisdom and compassion of Cadfael shine forth, making him one of the more appealing creations in modern crime fiction. In all, good great fun,and excellent book in the series
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By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Sometimes I can figure out "who done it," but not this one. It keeps you hooked until the end. A monk who has been with the order for 18 years is seriously injured, and given Last Rights. He wants to give a final confession: That he killed his former lover and their unborn child! Alas, he eventually recovers from his injuries, although permenantly crippled. He goes in search of the girl's mother to confess to her and ask forgiveness. He goes on foot, with crutches, accompanied by Brother Cadfael. The story doesn't become an strange mystery until he arrives at his destination. Then, you're on the edge of your seat until all the questions are answered. A very good book, as are all of Ellis Peters' Cadfael stories.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A treasure of a book! Dec 20 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
BUT! Now Brother Cadfael belongs to history, and the readers who love him so.
Start at the beginning and READ THIS SERIES! Miss Peters had an unparalleled gift for conjuring the most beautiful images with her words. I mean, how many people can write about the grim and gritty middle ages and almost make you want to live there? When Cadfael digs in his garden and breathes in the scent of his herbs, you are there, my friend.
In this volume we meet Brother Haluin, whom we take to our hearts straight away. This book never fails to wring my heart, and yet leave me with a sweet feeling of satisfaction at the end. A 'keeper'. Like me you will read this book over and over again.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Slower than most of the series... July 12 2000
By Christy
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I felt this entry in the Brother Cadfael series (I'm reading them in order after discovering them a couple of years ago) was more predictable than most.
I'm not usually able to figure them out ahead of time -- or what I figure usually ends with an unexpected twist. Because it turned out as I had expected, it seemed to go more slowly, and so I was glad when I finished it.
But along the way, it was fascinating, as all of the books are. Peters picks you up and immerses you completely in the 12th century, adding some interesting historical points as well as giving you a vivid picture of what it was like to live during that period.
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By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Peters isn't Shakespeare, but she does know how to hook you in. I could see quite clearly Brother Haluin dragging his failing body over miles and miles to atone for his sins, and gentle and wise Brother Cadfael putting all the pieces together (both physical and intellecutal) to make sense of the journey. Peters has a wonderful grasp of human emotions in this book, and draws a very clear picture of Medieaval monastic life with its limitations and its glories, making us feel as though we fit right in even though it's 800 years later. I want to hang out with Cadfael and hoist a glass of ale or two with this warm, compassionate and clever monk.
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5.0 out of 5 stars MYSTERY IN MEDIEVAL TIMES - I'm hooked! Aug. 4 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This novel is one of two by Ellis Peters that I've now read. But I'm hooked! Although I've only read a couple of this series about the medieval detective Cadfael, my appetite has been whetted, and I'm certain to read more!
Peters' command of the English language is outstanding, as is her precise portrait of medieval times. The intriguing element of mystery that makes detective Cadfael's presence essential to the plot clinches this novel as a romping success.
If you enjoy mystery, as well as a writer's ability to make excellent use of the English language with colourful descriptions, you are sure to enjoy this book.
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