Review of "Bernard Knight"
I found Bernard Knights books by accident whilst shopping in Tesco. Some books were on offer of 3 for £10.00. Being an avid reader I thought I'd give them a go even though I normally prefer horror espicially James Herbert. I'm really pleased that I did.Bernard Knight was born in 1931 in Cardiff and qualified as a Doctor in 1954 and as a Barrister in 1967. He served in the Army as a pathologist and Army Doctor. He became a Home Office pathologist in 1965 and was appointed Professor of Forensic Pathology at the University of Wales College of Medicine in 1980. He was given a C.B.E in 1993 and retired from medicine in 1996.
His books are the Crowner John Mysteries. 11 books in this series have been published. The 12th is due to be released summer 2008The Crowner John series are set in 12th century Exeter (the same era as Robin Hood) and are based around 6 main characters.
Sir John de Wolfe (Main Character) - appointed the first ever Coroner of Devon by King Richard the Lionheart after fighting with him in the Holy Land wars. Sir John is in his 40's, a loyal servant to the King and believes in things being done correctly and above board.Richard de Reville - Sheriff of Devon - Brother in Law to John de Wolfe.
On the side of Prince John, King Richard the Lionhearts brother. Has his fingers in every pot to make money for himself and normally on the wrong side of the correct law.
Matilda de Wolfe - Wife to John, sister to Richard. Stuck in the middle of her husband and brother, married John because of the social scene and embarrassed by her brothers antics. The marraige seems rather loveless and she seems to spend most of her time in local churches.Gwyn - Henchman/bodyguard to John de Wolfe - fought in the Holy Land wars with John. Takes no punches and loyal to John de Wolfe and the King.
Thomas de Peyne - unfrocked priest and clerk to John de Wolfe. Taken under Johns wings but a big help because he can read and write hence being the clerk.Nesta - John de Wolfe's Mistress and landlady of the Bush Inn - Part owned by John de Wolfe.
Sir John, being Coroner, investigates strange deaths, murders, rapes, assults, fires and other legal problems that happen in Exeter and the surounding areas. John and his Sheriff Brother in law Richard are bitter enemies with Richard usually having something to do with the crimes in an effort to make more money for himself and Prince John.All books start with an historical note which sets out some details of medieval England, a street map of medieval Exeter which allows you to work out where the places are that mentioned in the books, a second map of Devonshire that shows Exeter and the villages where the books are set and finally a glossery of terms used in the book from medieval times.
At the back of the books are historical postscipts that say although the names are fictional the books are based on historical fact.Books available:
The Sanctuary Seeker
The Poisoned Chalice
The Awful Secret
The Grim Reaper
The Tinners Corpse
Fear in the Forest
The Witch Hunter
Figure of Hate
Elixer of Death
The Noble Outlaw
The Manor of Death - Due out in paperback summer 2008.
In my opinion.The books give a good insight to medieval England and if you like historical reading, these books are well worth the read. They are easy to read and average between 350 - 400 pages.
Bernard Knights Website is http://bernard-knight.mysite.orange.co.uk
Product Information : Bernard Knight
Manufacturer's product description
Type: Writer's corner
Author: Bernard Knight
Listed on Ciao since: 07/08/2007