The Leper's Bell (Sister Fidelma Series #13)

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Overview

In November of 667 A.D., Fidelma of Cashel has returned home to her brother's castle to discover that a servant, her son's nurse, has been found brutally murdered in the woods near town, and her son is missing, presumed kidnapped or worse. Sister Fidelma, sister to king of Muman in Ireland, an advocate of the Brehon courts, and a religieuse of the Celtic Church, and her husband Brother Eadulf now must face their most personal and baffling case ever. Is there a traitor at her brother's court? Are the Ui Fidgente, ...

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2005 Hard cover New. No dust jacket. lt shelf wear...Book Is New! Glued binding. Cloth over boards. With dust jacket. 276 p. Sister Fidelma Mysteries (Hardcover). Audience: ... General/trade. Read more Show Less

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The Leper's Bell (Sister Fidelma Series #13)

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Overview

In November of 667 A.D., Fidelma of Cashel has returned home to her brother's castle to discover that a servant, her son's nurse, has been found brutally murdered in the woods near town, and her son is missing, presumed kidnapped or worse. Sister Fidelma, sister to king of Muman in Ireland, an advocate of the Brehon courts, and a religieuse of the Celtic Church, and her husband Brother Eadulf now must face their most personal and baffling case ever. Is there a traitor at her brother's court? Are the Ui Fidgente, the old blood enemies of Fidelma's family, involved? And what is the role of the mysterious dwarf seen leaving the kingdom carrying a leper's bell? With few clues and precious little time, Fidelma must unravel this complicated puzzle in time to rescue her missing child.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...the author... once again brings the people and customs of seventh-century Ireland to vivid life."

Publishers Weekly

 

"Tremayne brings his customary attention to historical detail to a narrative that incorporates surprisingly modern concerns."

—Booklist

Publishers Weekly
In the pseudonymous Tremayne's intriguing 15th Irish historical (after 2005's Badger's Moon), Fidelma of Cashel suffers a terrible personal loss. On returning in the fall of A.D. 667 to the castle of her brother, Colgu, who's the king of Muman, Fidelma discovers that her baby son's nurse has been murdered and her son has disappeared. She and Brother Eadulf, her partner in a trial marriage, become involved in a complex plot involving palace politics and hostile tribes, frightening captures and hair-raising escapes. The diverse supporting cast includes warriors and woodsmen, bishops and apothecaries, dwarfs and lepers. Despite some clunky prose, the author, an authority on ancient Celtic culture under his real name of Peter Berresford Ellis, once again brings the people and customs of seventh-century Ireland to vivid life. (Jan.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Sister Fidelma (Badger's Moon, 2005, etc.) searches for her missing son and the murderer of his nurse. Anyone who thinks seventh-century Ireland offers women no opportunities has never met the indomitable Fidelma, advocate of the law courts, sister to King Colgu and mother to a child conceived during her trial marriage to the Saxon Brother Eadulf. Now her sleuthing skills are challenged by the murder of nurse Sarait and the apparent kidnapping of baby Alchu. A ransom note demands the release of imprisoned enemy chieftains of the Ui Fidgente. While Fidelma and Eadulf await proof that the mysterious correspondent actually has the child, Eadulf discovers a clue that leads him to neighboring territory in search of itinerants seen with two infants. Eadulf must escape from the evil leper Lord Uaman before his search can succeed. In the meantime, Fidelma is captured by the released chieftains only to be rescued by their warlord, who insists he had nothing to do with the ransom demand. The adventures the couple face before realizing that the solution lies closer to home read like a chapter misplaced from Lord of the Rings. In the end, like Frodo, they triumph over evil. The historical detail, laid on with a trowel, often makes Tremayne a tough slog. But at least Fidelma is becoming more human. Her 15th case may win her a larger audience.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312323431
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 12/27/2005
  • Series: Sister Fidelma Series , #13
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.37 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 0.87 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter Tremayne is the pseudonym of Peter Berresford Ellis, a well-known authority on the ancient Celts. As Tremayne, he is the author of several books featuring Sister Fidelma, most recently Badger's Moon. He lives in London.

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Table of Contents

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 7 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(4)

4 Star

(2)

3 Star

(1)

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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 20, 2012

    An immersion into ancient Ireland

    This is the third Tremayne/Sister Fidelma book that I have read. For those unfamiliar with the series, Tremayne is a historian well versed about life in seventh century Ireland. The books are written almost as if they are meant to be read by people of the period - lots of references to places, myths, etc that people of the period would be familiar with. Tremayne provides added phrases (interpretions, translations) to help the modern reader, but one cannot possibly absorb it all. The fun is feeling like you are being immersed into a foreign culture. In the midst of this, a mystery (or adventure) story takes place.

    With regard to this specific book, the plot line revolves around the murder of their nursemaid and abduction of Fidelma and Eudulf's baby child. (Fidelma and Eudulf are the two main characters in this series of novels.) Most of the novel is more of an adventure story than a mystery, but the book turns into a traditional mystery in the final chapters where it is revealed who did what.

    On the whole, this is well written book. Of particular interest is a subplot about the tensions that have built up between Fidelma and Eudulf as they near the end of their one year trial marriage. (According to the Irish law of the time, people can enter into a one year relationship at the end of which they have to decide whether to continue on in a permanent marriage.)

    I downgraded the book one star because there are a couple of remarkablely timed coinidences toward the end of the book to save the main characters, and, the resolution of the mystery, while plausible, is thin with regard to proof.

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    delightful medieval who-done-it

    In the seventh century, dalieh Sister Fidelma of Cashel, travels around Eire as an advocate of the law courts accompanied by her lover and trial marriage partner Brother Eadulf of Seaxmund's Ham. After their current trek in which they left their young son home with his competent nurse Sarat, they return home to tragedy. Sarat has been murdered and their child is missing, probably kidnapped, but no ransom or any message has been delivered by the perpetrators. --- Fidelma¿s brother King Colgu of Muman is irate over the abduction of his nephew. He meets with his advisers and Eadulf on how to proceed. All agree on one thing not to allow the normally logical Fidelma to investigate especially since she holds herself culpable for going on her last assignment while leaving her child behind. However, Fidelma remains determined to get involved regardless of the commands from her brother the king and her spouse. --- Peter Tremayne refreshes the delightful long running medieval who-done-it by bringing the case home and making it personal for the normally rational Fidlema. However, this time she must keep calm in order to follow the clues to rescue her beloved son even though her brother and husband think she is incapable of performing such a detached investigation. The Leper¿s Bell is Peter Tremayne at his very best (which is incredible). --- Harriet Klausner

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 21, 2011

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    Posted November 24, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 30, 2012

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    Posted December 12, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2009

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