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Past Poisons: An Ellis Peters Memorial…
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Past Poisons: An Ellis Peters Memorial Anthology of Historic Crime

by Maxim Jakubowski (Editor)

Other authors: Catherine Aird (Contributor), Molly Brown (Contributor), Lindsey Davis (Contributor), Martin Edwards (Contributor), Diana Gabaldon (Contributor)1 more, Peter Tremayne (Contributor)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Ellis Peters Memorial Anthology of Historical Crime (1)

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Past Poisons: an Ellis Peters memorial anthology of historical crime. As has been said of Scott Turow and legal thrillers or Sue Grafton and forensic science investigations, there are many who credit Edith Pargeter, writing as Ellis Peters, with the explosion of the sub-genre of historical mysteries through the huge popularity of her Brother Cadfael series, beginning with A Morbid Taste for Bones in 1977. Her twelfth-century Benedictine herbalist and sleuth inspired several authors to put pen to paper in an effort to show that a historical setting could provide the right atmosphere for crimes of all types. The financial success of the books, eventually turned into a television series, allowed publishers and editors the freedom to take some chances on these new authors and helped establish the sub-genre as a viable commercial field well before her death in 1995.
I started reading the Cadfael series in 1991 as a public librarian and found in them everything that I now use to judge all other historical mysteries: a realistic portrayal of the historical setting, an interesting investigator using his or her brain to unwind intricate plots, and well-developed supporting characters who continue to grow as the series progresses. These books, along with those of the authors listed below and Josephine Tey’s The Daughter of Time kindled the passion that I still feel for historical mysteries.
The memorial anthology of short stories published in 1998 showcases many of the premier HM writers of the time, including most of my favorites such as Lindsey Davis, Paul Doherty, Edward Marston, Michael Pearce and Peter Tremayne. Each tale is preceded by a short tribute from the author to Peters describing her influence on their careers. The breadth of settings from Greece, Italy and Egypt to Scotland, London and even Heart’s Castle at San Simeon accurately demonstrates the variety that historical mysteries has to offer readers. It is an excellent introduction to the genre, though I do wish that one of Peters’ own pieces had been included.

For all my book and movie reviews, please visit my blog at http://unsetalarmclock.wordpress.com/
1 vote grmachine | Aug 22, 2008 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jakubowski, MaximEditorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Aird, CatherineContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brown, MollyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Davis, LindseyContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Edwards, MartinContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Gabaldon, DianaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tremayne, PeterContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Doherty, Paul C.Contributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gregory, SusannaContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Harper, CliffordCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hoch, Edward D.Contributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Howard, DavidContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Laurence, JanetContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lovesey, PeterContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Marston, EdwardContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pearce, MichaelContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Perry, AnneContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rathbone, JulianContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Roberts, John MaddoxContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ross, KateContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Saylor, StevenContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Todd, MarilynContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (4)

Book description
CONTENTS: A Counter-blast to Tobacco by Paul C. Doherty -- Wheel in the Sky by Edward D. Hoch -- Starstruck at San Simeon by Janet Laurence -- Death by Eros by Steven Saylor -- Damned Spot by Julian Rathbone -- Showman by Peter Lovesey -- The Padder's Lesson by Molly Brown -- To Dispose of an Abbot by Susanna Gregory -- The Mamur Zapt and the Catherine Wheel by Michael Pearce -- The Great Brogonye by David Howard -- The Unkindest Cut by Kate Ross -- Girl Talk by Marilyn Todd -- Invitation to a Poisoning by Peter Tremayne -- The Last High Queen by Anne Perry -- To Encourage the Others by Martin Edwards -- Psalm for a Dead Disciple by Edward Marston -- Handsel Monday by Catherine Aird -- An Academic Question by John Maddox Roberts -- Hellfire by Diane Gabaldon -- The Party May Yet be Living ... by Lindsey Davis
Haiku summary
A fine collection
Of historical murder
Mysteries through time.
(passion4reading)

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0747260273, Paperback)

The stories in this collection have been written by many historical crime writers all wishing to pay tribute to the work of Edith Pargeter, alias Ellis Peters, who wrote the Brother Cadfael series. The authors have also contributed a short introduction about their sources and influences.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:51 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

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