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Dissolution: A Matthew Shardlake Tudor…

Dissolution: A Matthew Shardlake Tudor Mystery (Matthew Shardlake… (original 2003; edition 2004)

by C. J. Sansom (Author)

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2,9781461,920 (3.92)506
Title:Dissolution: A Matthew Shardlake Tudor Mystery (Matthew Shardlake Mysteries)
Authors:C. J. Sansom (Author)
Info:Penguin Books (2004), Edition: Reprint, 416 pages
Collections:2015 Book Log

Work details

Dissolution by C. J. Sansom (2003)

  1. 141
    The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco (Caramellunacy)
    Caramellunacy: Both feature ghastly murders in a monastery in a time of religious conflict and turmoil. The Name of the Rose (medieval Italy) is more philosophical, while Dissolution (Tudor England) is more of a straight-forward historical mystery. Both offer interesting insights into the political and religious issues of the times.… (more)
  2. 80
    Mistress of the Art of Death by Ariana Franklin (wandering_star)
    wandering_star: Both these series are excellent mysteries set in well-drawn medieval England.
  3. 60
    An Instance of the Fingerpost by Iain Pears (Louve_de_mer)
  4. 10
    Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel (SHBR123)
  5. 00
    A Conspiracy of Violence by Susanna Gregory (Riyale)
  6. 00
    Pardonnez nos offenses by Romain Sardou (Louve_de_mer)
  7. 00
    L'Eclat de Dieu : Ou Le Roman du Temps by Romain Sardou (Louve_de_mer)

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» See also 506 mentions

English (138)  Dutch (4)  French (2)  Spanish (1)  Norwegian (1)  All (146)
Showing 1-5 of 138 (next | show all)
A good historical mystery set in medieval England during the English Reformation. The title refers to dissolution of the monasteries under the reign of Henry VIII. This was an interesting story, and I honestly couldn’t even hazard a guess at the identity of the killer until the denouement. I don’t know if I’ll read more in the series however, as I couldn’t quite connect with the main character. He wasn’t very likeable to me. ( )
  dorie.craig | Jun 22, 2017 |
I really enjoyed this, I had previously read Sovereign and remember that I enjoyed that too so thought it was high time to start at the beginning. It is a very well researched book and the details of the English Reformation are fascinating to read, it was certainly a very dark and dangerous chapter of English history. As a student of history it always makes me particularly sad when I consider how much was lost in those years, never to be seen again.

In terms of the murder mystery itself, I did guess who had done it but not until right at the end when Shardlake himself was finally opening his eyes to reality. Shardlake is an interesting main character, honestly I didn't like him and thought he was a self-righteous idiot for most of the book. I was coming round to him in the end and I have Dark Fire to read at some point in the near future, so maybe I will like him more in that one. ( )
  LiteraryReadaholic | Jun 6, 2017 |
This is the first in a series featuring Matthew Shardlake and the series takes place during the reign of Henry VIII after Anne Boleyn was executed. Shardlake is a lawyer working as a commissioner for Thomas Cromwell to oversee the dissolution of the abbey in Scarnsea. The dissolution is part of the Crown's plan to rid the country of corruption in the abbeys and direct the monies to the crown. Shardlake arrives with his assistant Mark Poer to investigate the murder of the previous commissioner.
I am delighted to have discovered a historical fiction series of this caliber. The plot, the writing, the atmosphere, the characters and the outcome are very well done.
The historical background is accurate and describes the continuing conflict between the King and the Catholic Church in England.
I look forward to reading more in this series. ( )
  MaggieFlo | Mar 27, 2017 |
Finished August 10, 2016. Perfectly enjoyable mystery. A bit meh though -- some clunky writing and obvious plot mechanics. First book -- will try others to see if quality goes up.
  davidsdunbar | Aug 10, 2016 |
Having never read C.J. Sansom, I wasn’t sure what to expect when I picked up this book. But a mystery set in Henry VIII’s England, with a middle-aged, hunchbacked lawyer at its center? Count me in!

The event that forms the background of the investigation is the systematic dissolution of Catholic monasteries throughout England. Shardlake is not only there to investigate his predecessor’s death, but to find a reason for Cromwell to dissolve the monastery and take its riches for the king.

Shardlake is not your usual investigator. He is not detached, or systematic. In fact, his feelings get very involved in his investigation. Especially troublesome are his feelings of envy of his protege and ward, young and handsome Mark. The investigation goes in many directions, sometimes too many, but the end result was satisfying.

I thought an interesting touch was the weather and terrain keeping the monastery very isolated from the politics that overwhelm most Tudor-era novels. It’s still a part of the backdrop, but not a part of the day-to-day workings.

This is a series I’d like to continue! ( )
  miyurose | Jun 7, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 138 (next | show all)
A well-written historical mystery, unique for both its characters and setting. A definite winner for fans of historical mystery.

» Add other authors (8 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
C. J. Sansomprimary authorall editionscalculated
Jones, SimonNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lesser, AntonNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To the writer's group:

Jan, Luke, Mary, Mike B, Mike H, Roz, William

and especially Tony, our inspiration. The crucible.

And to Caroline
First words
I was down in Surrey, on business for Lord Cromwell's office, when the summons came.
You untangle a knot with slow teasing, not sharp pulling, and believe me we have here a knot such as I have never seen.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Haiku summary
Matthew Shardlake, a
Lawyer, investigates crimes in
Tudor monastery.

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0142004308, Paperback)

Exciting and elegantly written, Dissolution is an utterly compelling first novel and a riveting portrayal of Tudor England. The year is 1537, and the country is divided between those faithful to the Catholic Church and those loyal to the king and the newly established Church of England. When a royal commissioner is brutally murdered in a monastery on the south coast of England, Thomas Cromwell, Henry VIII’s feared vicar general, summons fellow reformer Matthew Shardlake to lead the inquiry. Shardlake and his young protégé uncover evidence of sexual misconduct, embezzlement, and treason, and when two other murders are revealed, they must move quickly to prevent the killer from striking again.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:30 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Having worked to establish laws that protect the interests of the crown in 1537, Thomas Cromwell, Henry VIII's feared vicar-general, enlists fellow reformer and lawyer Matthew Shardlake to investigate a commissioner's murder, which may be tied to an impending rebellion.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 9 descriptions

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