The Proud Sinner

The Proud Sinner

Book - 2017
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In the winter of 1282, snow and ice ravage East Anglia while Prioress Eleanor awaits the decision of her young maid, Gracia, found starving on the streets some years ago, whether to take vows or to leave Tyndal Priory to make her way in the world. But a far greater problem arrives at the priory gate. Seven abbots are riding to meet a papal legate in Norfolk. This is not a pilgrimage-each abbot hopes to make a case for being raised to a bishopric at the next vacancy. One abbot grows so ill the party has detoured to Tyndal. And despite the limited care Sister Anne can offer, Abbot Ilbert dies a horrible death, cause unknown. As his fellows prepare to resume their journey the next day, Abbot Tristram doubles over in great distress. By now the heavy snows have choked all the roads and the priory and village are marooned. Tristram dies. And then another abbot sickens while Sister Anne struggles to determine what killed these men-which question soon becomes not just what, but who did it? One suspect is the gluttonous Odo, the ambitious Abbot of Caldwell and younger brother of Crowner Ralf. Since everyone despises Odo, is he simply a red herring? Prioress Eleanor is determined to stop the carnage that has shattered the tranquility in her priory while the Crowner must enforce the king's justice. Brother Thomas and Sister Anne form part of the investigation which plumbs the priory's kitchens and management as well as its medical facilities. The Proud Sinner, 13th in the Medieval Mysteries by Priscilla Royal, illustrates medieval matters medical and culinary as well as vocations for the religious life in a framework that crosses Chaucer's Canterbury Tales with Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None.
Publisher: Scottsdale, AZ : Poisoned Pen Press, 2017
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9781464207259
1464207259
Branch Call Number: MYSTERY ROYAL 2017
Characteristics: 224 pages ; 23 cm

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Roundcat
Mar 09, 2017

Seven abbots arrive at Tyndale Priory. One of them dies as soon as he can be put into the infirmary, another shorty thereafter. As the story progresses, we realize that each abbot characterizes one of the seven deadly sins. It is the dead of winter and they are snowed in, so we also have the country house mystery situation. One of the abbots is Crowner Ralf's brother--another complication. The following events keep Prioress Eleanor, Brother Thomas, Crowner Ralf, and Sister Anne leaping from theory to theory and interrogating suspects trying to figure out who is plotting against the abbots and how to keep them alive and healthy. The solution was logical, but totally unexpected. Priscilla Royal has outdone herself. I could hardly put it down.

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