Monday 16 July 2018

A Discovering Diamonds review of The Tapestry of Death by Howard of Warwick


The Chronicles of Brother Hermitage Book 3

Humour / Mystery
1066 era

This is my first encounter with the work of Howard of Warwick. It won’t be my last. This book is outright humorous. I am reluctant to express an opinion on the humour, because I know from personal experience that nothing turns a reader off a humorous book faster than being told how funny it is. Humour is a strange, individual quality. We have to discover it ourselves. Let me just say that the humour is very British, and I felt compelled to read snippets to my wife as I read the book.

The book is set in 1067, just after the battle of Hastings, and concerns pornographic tapestries. The Normans have arrived and are routinely oppressing the local Saxons. The plot is interesting and well-constructed and contains several surprises. The two main characters are a monk, called Brother Hermitage, who is the king’s Investigator, and Wat the Weaver. I think the weaver is the sidekick, although he seems to play a much more active role than the monk in this book. The overall effect is like a cross between Ellis Peters and Tom Sharpe. This is the third in a series of eleven that feature this monk.

I would have been happier if the book had been better edited; punctuation is not Howard’s strong suit, so a re-edit would be advised as the lack of editing took the edge off it, somewhat.

The cover is splendid, and in keeping with the rest of the series and the tone of the work.

 Recommended, despite the editing errors.

© JJ Toner

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