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The Demon Archer by P. C. Doherty

The Demon Archer (1999)

by P. C. Doherty

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The Demon Archer, by Paul Doherty, is one of a series of medieval mysteries featuring the Royal Clerk, Hugh Corbett, a sort of roving emissary for King Edward in 14th Century England. This novel deals with the murder of Lord Henry Fitzalan, who is killed by an arrow while preparing to hunt in his forest land. While the man's death is a shock, not many mourn him as he was a cruel, lascivious master who had made many enemies; this fact makes Corbett's charge, to find the killer, rather more difficult as he has a surfeit of choices for lead suspect. Soon, he finds himself embroiled in webs of deceit, political maneuverings and venomous humans, all of which lead to further deaths and mysteries to resolve....I have read some of the Corbett stories at shorter lengths, but this is my first full-length novel, and I found that Doherty did a good job of keeping the medieval world at the forefront of his tale, without dragging in 21st century concepts. There are a number of earlier novels in the series (as well as some later ones, I believe), but I didn't feel that I missed anything because I hadn't read them first, always a welcome point when diving into the middle of a series! I also felt that he dealt fairly with the suspects, and it was refreshing to find that, when the culprit was revealed, I was surprised but also agreed that the murderer was the logical choice given the evidence provided. Fans of historical mysteries, particularly set in medieval times, will enjoy this series, and I plan to seek out more of Doherty's work in the future. ( )
  thefirstalicat | Jul 13, 2012 |
This is another book in the Hugh Corbett medieval sleuth series, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I was sufficiently 'creeped out' by the description and happenings in the forest, happy at the introduction of a new supporting character and surprised to learn who the culprit was at the end. (Although I did think that 'Demon Archer' was a harsh description of the villain).

I thought Corbett 'got to the point' quicker in this book with more investigating and less reflection, and I enjoyed the quicker pace.

If you enjoy a good crime story set in medieval times, this is a terrific series. ( )
  Carpe_Librum | Nov 30, 2010 |
Like all P. C. Doherty's books about Hugh Corbett, a rattling good read. A Mediaeval murder mystery that brings to life the sounds and smells of the cities, villages and people of the period. Great characterisation, well researched (the author knows the period exceptionally well), gentle humour combined with suspense and some "religious" terror. Un-put-down-able. Thoroughly recommended. ( )
  misspeggy | Jan 18, 2009 |
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In memory of Patrick Leonard Graves of Woodford Green and for his wife Patricia and his brave children, Steven and Michelle, Joanne and Nicola.
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Ashdown Forest, or so they said, was as old as the island itself.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0747260745, Paperback)

The death of Lord Henry Fitzalan on the feast of St Matthew, 1303, is a matter widely reported but little mourned. Infamous for his lecherous tendencies, his midnight trysts with a coven of witches and his boundless self-interest, he was a man of few friends. So when Hugh Corbett is asked to bring his murderer to justice it is not a matter of finding a suspect but of choosing between them. Immediate suspicion falls on Lord Henry's chief verderer, Robert Verlian. His daughter had been the focus of the Lord's roving eye in the weeks before his death and Fitzalan was not a man to take no for an answer. But the culprit could just as easily be Sir William, the dead man's younger brother. It is no secret that Sir William covets the Fitzalan estate, but would he kill to inherit it? For Sir Hugh Corbett the possibilities are endless, but even he could never have imagined the real truth behind the murder...

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:16 -0400)

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Hugh Corbett is asked to solve the murder of Lord Henry Fitzalan, who was not very well liked and which makes the suspects aplenty.

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