The Potter’s Field, Summer of the Danes, and The Holy Thief



by Ellis Peters

Published 1989, 1991, 1992

Sorry for the long posting delay…  we are in the  midst of moving house (again) so things are more than a bit chaotic around here!  But reading is always a constant, and I have TONS of books to post!!!

All the way back on vacation, I finally finished the Brother Cadfael series.  I’ll talk about the final book later, but first, books 17-19…

As always, excellent stories.  The Potter’s Field is an interesting one to me because it brings up an interesting question–a man left his wife to become a monk.  And I’m not sure that I agree that God would ever have someone take sacred vows (marriage) and then call that man to walk away from those vows.  Still, the cast of characters involved in this story are interesting.

The Summer of the Danes reintroduces one of my very favorite characters from the series, Brother Mark.  He and Cadfael are sent on an errand into Wales, and, while there, are caught up in a local civil war.  This book is a bit unusual for the series, in that Cadfael is not the center of the story.  He’s there, and we see much of it through his eyes, but it’s almost like she had this other story that she wanted to tell and just stuck Cadfael in it so she could include it in the series.  That doesn’t make the story any less worthwhile, because some of the other characters are very well drawn.

In The Holy Thief, we actually meet several characters who were first introduced in The Potter’s Field.  Saint Winifred again plays a large role in the story as well.  Somehow, this series gives you a great love and respect for that saint.

I truly love these books, as I say every time I review any of them, and highly recommend this well-written, historically accurate series.