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Morbid Taste for Bones
by Ellis Peters
ISBN 0333223241 / 9780333223246 / 0-333-22324-1
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A delightful detective makes his appearance in the person of Brother Cadfael, in charge of the herb-gardens in the Benedictine Monastery of Shrewsbury. Cadfael is not very unwordly, since he entered the cloister late in life. But his role becomes a very vital one when his superiors become obsessed with the notion of acquiring the bones of an obscure saint from a remote Welsh village. Miraculous powers had been attributed to this saint, and it is thought the possession of her remains will add much to the prestige of the Shrewsbury Foundation - and of its prior. The ambitious prior leads a delegation into Wales to acquire these relics. They encounter many obstacles - the worst of them murder. Dissention, the tangled affairs of two pairs of lovers, a surfeit of unwelcome miracles and visitations plague them. But in the end Brother Cadfael gets all the bones and all the bodies into the most appropriate places and makes all the survivors happy. [via]