Book - 2003
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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.
Publisher: London : Macmillan, 2003.
Branch Call Number: MYSTERY
Characteristics: 389 p. :,maps ;,25 cm.
Series Volume: 1.
Notes: Maps on lining papers.


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Try not to lose your head over this series

Murder, history, politics, religious reformation. Watching Queens come and go. Good Catholics  having their saints and idols removed from churches, their monasteries dissolved and monks thrown out into the streets. And all because your Monarch, who you are fast going off, wanted a divorce and it wasn't granted by the Pope. Oh, and murders and the solving of them of course. It's all here in… (more)

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May 24, 2020

A Tudor Morse.

Feb 12, 2017

C. J. Sansom does a phenomenal job of weaving a whodunit story using threads from the controversial establishment of the Church of England in the early 1500s, including the sinister figure of Cromwell, the mastermind behind the dissolution of the Catholic houses of faith. It wasn't a good time to be alive, but some folks were being hurried to eternity against their will. Matthew Shardlake is an idealistic lawyer, commissioned by Cromwell, to solve the murder of an agent of Cromwell's dissolution in an ancient monastery inhabited by monks with sacred zeal and secular tendencies. In the style of every good detective story, Shardlake builds the case slowly with intellect, while dealing with his own demons and weaknesses, building suspicions, creating empathy, to a resolution both surprising and expected.

Jan 12, 2016

Wonderful and well written, totally immersive.

Mar 17, 2014

Recommended by Linda mann

Feb 25, 2013

Set during the reign of Henry VIII and the English reformation, this is a crime novel, yet so much more. It is not a contemporary whodunit set in period costumes. It is an engrossing historical novel sucking the reader into 16th century England and the brutal regime of Henry and Thomas Cromwell. A real gem. Can't wait to read the ensuing titles in this short series.

Jeremy410 Sep 14, 2011

Engaging murder mystery during the reign of King Henry VIII in England, circa 1537. If you have ever wondered why there are no ancient monasteries for tourists to visit in England, just read this book.
Henry was very thorough in ridding his country of Catholioc influence.

sjmitra Jul 06, 2011

An excellent read for history and mystery buffs! The author has a doctorate in history and the period details are beautifully documented. Atmospheric, with interesting and well-developed characters, the book is a whodunit set in 16th century England when Henry and Cromwell were set on dissolving the monasteries. The next book in the Shardlake series is Dark Fire.

May 26, 2011

Listened to this on audio book and was a good listen that I may have struggled to read from a book. Enjoyable

Apr 27, 2011

Dissolution is the 1st in a series of historical mysteries set in Tudor England and featuring the crime solving character of Matthew Shardlake. The story happens during the huge changes and upheavals in the church when the King denounces the Pope and demands reform. I am not a mystery reader and therefore enjoyed the historical aspect of the book more than the mystery storyline, but I must say it did keep me interested and guessing right to the end.

Sep 12, 2010

Wonderful mystery. Especially fascinating if you have knowledge of that terrible era.

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