In A.D. 670 Fidelma of Cashel is asked to act as an advisor to the Irish delegation to a hostile church council. In an abbey in Burgundy, Bishop Leodegar of Autun has assembled church leaders from all over western Europe, intending to use the council to deliver a death blow to the Celtic Church. But his plans are threatened when one of the delgates is found murdered, his skull crushed.
Fidelma and her husband, Brother Eadulf, are suddenly in the midst of a murder investigation involving some of the most powerful religious leaders. The duo soon find that between the autocratic Bishop Leodegar and the malignant abbess, Mother Audofleda, a web of sinister intrigue is spreading throughout the abbey. And murder is only the beginning. The theft of a priceless reliquary box, the disappearance of local women and children, and the concurrent rumors of a slave trade all combine to make this one of the most diabolical puzzles that Fidelma and Eadulf have ever faced.
|Publisher:||St. Martin's Press|
|Series:||Sister Fidelma Series , #17|
|Edition description:||Seventeenth Edition|
|Product dimensions:||8.48(w) x 11.88(h) x 0.83(d)|
About the Author
PETER TREMAYNE is best known for his stories and novels featuring Fidelma of Cashel. He lives in London.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Council of the Cursed Peter Tremayne Minotaur, Nov 3 2009, $24.99 ISBN: 9780312375652 In 670 AD, Bishop Leodegar of Autun calls for a council to discuss different positions taken by the various Christian churches. For instance his community enforces a celibacy direction, which has led to outraged monks having to send their upset wives and children to reside at Domus Femini under the control of vicious martinet Abbess Autofleda. The Celtic Church sends Fidelma of Cashel and her husband Brother Eadulf to France as their representatives. The night that the Celtic delegation arrives, someone bashes in the head of Hibernian Abbot Dabhoc; also with him are two unconscious clerics, who upon being revived insist they know nothing. Fidelma's instigative fame has crossed the Channel and she has the support of the papal delegation so an unhappy Leodegar agrees to this woman making inquiries. As she uncovers clues, Fidelma finds several possible suspects that run the gamut of the church as each had motive and opportunity but also believes something more powerful is the actual motive; while her host demands she finish yesterday; proclaiming women should not be delegates or sleuths. With obvious timeliness in terms of the issue of celibacy and a woman's role in the church both wrapped inside a powerful complex whodunit, the COUNCIL OF THE CURSED is a terrific Dark Ages mystery. Fidelma is at her best as she rejects pressure brought by either a killer wanting to remain concealed or by her being a female. The story line is fast-paced as Peter Tremayne moves his champion from Ancient Ireland to France in a fabulous entry. Harriet Klausner
Peter Tremayne's historical novels about Sister Fidelma are without equal. Women who want to understand the tragedy of the eradication of the Irish Church, after Henry II gave it to the Pope, will be educated by Tremayne's books. The early Irish church honored women, allowed them to own property, and gave them rights that the Roman Catholics took away when the Irish Church was erased. Perhaps if the Irish way of allowing priests and nuns to marry had been retained, there would be no sex scandals in the church today. Highly recommended for all who want to understand the denigration of women throughout three millennia.
I thought that the first two submitted reviews were dead on. The one thing that I would like to add is that book begins with an historical note. I don't think that this should be in the front of the book, but at the end in that it contains a partial spoiler.