THE DEVIL’S NOVICE, by Ellis Peters

I just finished reading THE DEVIL’S NOVICE by Ellis Peters, and it was really, really good. Absolutely brilliant book. The story excellently captures the look and feel of 12th century England, it is an intriguing murder mystery, and the author has keen psychological insight.

I will limit myself to just two of my favorite quotes from the book:

Afterwards, of course, there were plenty of wiseacres pregnant with hindsight, listing portents, talking darkly of omens, brazenly asserting that they had told everyone so. After every shock and reverse, such late experts proliferate.

And this, too:

Cadfael passed them with his eyes still fixed on the girl Roswitha, whose infinite blue gaze opened on him like a summer sky. The slightest of smiles touched her lips as he passed, and a small, contented brightness flashed in her eyes. She knew that he could not but admire her, and even the admiration of an elderly monk was satisfaction to her. Surely the very motions she had made in his presence, so slight and so conscious, had been made in the knowledge that he was well aware of them, cobweb threads to entrammel one more unlikely fly.

He was careful not to look back, for it had dawned on him that she would confidently expect him to.

-JM

7 thoughts on “THE DEVIL’S NOVICE, by Ellis Peters

  • October 12, 2017 at 3:50 pm
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    Ellis Peters was such an evocative writer who was an expert on medieval Welsh history. She turned that expertise into a marvelous series of novels staring Brother Cadfael.

    • October 12, 2017 at 9:47 pm
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      I’ve read eight books of the Cadfael series so far, and they were all excellent.

  • October 13, 2017 at 1:42 am
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    Her books remain high quality right through the last one.

  • October 13, 2017 at 2:58 pm
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    I’ll have to check these books out. I’ve never heard about these books or the author before and I do love finding a new author to enjoy.

    • October 13, 2017 at 9:25 pm
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      They are definitely good books. Murder mysteries set in western England during the war between King Stephen and Empress Matilda.

  • October 15, 2017 at 10:08 am
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    Have you watched the TV series with Derek Jacobi?

    • October 15, 2017 at 10:29 pm
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      I watched the adaption of ONE CORPSE TOO MANY and thought it was pretty good, but I haven’t seen any of the others yet.

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