Sunday, 2 March 2008

Susanna Gregory – “A Plague on Both Your Houses”


In the tradition of Ellis Peters, A Plague on Both Your Houses introduces the physician Matthew Bartholomew, whose unorthodox but effective treatment of his patients frequently draws accusations of heresy from his more traditional colleagues. Besides his practice, Bartholomew is teacher of Medicine at Michaelhouse, part of the fledgling University of Cambridge. In 1348, Bartholomew is distracted by the sudden and inexplicable death of the Master of Michaelhouse - a death the University authorities do not want investigated. When three more scholars die in mysterious circumstances, Bartholomew defies the University and begins his own enquiry. And then the Black Death arrives and Bartholomew is dragged deeper and deeper into a quagmire which threatens not only his life, but the continued existence of the University and the future of the town.

SUSANNA GREGORY is the pseudonym of Elizabeth Cruwys, a Cambridge academic who was previously a coroner's officer, born 1958. She writes detective fiction, and is noted for her series of medieval mysteries featuring Matthew Bartholomew, a teacher of medicine and investigator of murders in 14th-century Cambridge. Though the books may have some aspects in common with the Ellis Peters Cadfael series (an amateur and reluctant sleuth sceptical of superstition and somewhat ahead of his time) the tone and subject matter of the Gregory novels is far darker and does not shirk from portraying the harsh realities of life in the Middle Ages.

1 comment:

  1. I'm pleased to take in your opinion of Susanna Gregory. Based on her website and your thoughts, I'm going to check her out.

    I'm picking up The Warden this Wednesday.


    Judith (Reader in the Wilderness)


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