It Is The Autumn Of Master Hugh Is Enjoying The Peaceful Life Of Bampton, When A Badly Beaten Man Is Found Under The Porch Of St Andrew S Chapel The Dying Man Is A Chapman A Traveling Merchant Before He Is Buried In The Chapel Grounds An Ancient, Corroded Coin Is Found In The Man S Mouth Master Hugh S Quest For The Chapman S Assailants, And His Search For The Origin Of The Coin, Makes Steady Progress But There Are Men Of Wealth And Power Who Wish To Halt His Search, And An Old Nemesis, Sir Simon Trillowe, Is In League With Them But Master Hugh, And His Assistant, The Groom Arthur, Are Determined To Uncover The Thieves And Murderers, And The Source Of The Chapman S Coin They Do, But Not Before They Become Involved With A Kidnapped Maiden, A Tyrannical Abbot, And A Suffering Monk Who Needs Master Hugh S Surgical Skills And In Return Provides Clues Which Assist Hugh In Solving The Mystery Of The Tainted Coin A stranger, beaten to death on lands overseen by Hugh de Singleton, turns out to have had much than the cheap stocks he sold from his cart In fact, he shouldn t have been able to afford such a cart His knowledge made him prey to a group of predators ironically known as gentlemen Hugh and his henchmen are forced to make a number of dangerous rescues before they make the right one, and then it begins to look as though they were all for nothing.THE TAINTED COIN was good in general, but one operation was set up with such a stupid mistake that no one involved could have made it It seemed as if the author had been instructed to pad the length of the book A couple of the rescues could have been given relevance, which would have lengthened the book in a natural way. I enjoy this historical mystery series, featuring Hugh de Singleton, Surgeon and Bailiff It s easy reading and provides a thorough view on those times past It s a bit bland here and there, not so smoothly written I find, but I guess that s also the plus of this series Style is no nonsense with much detail about the times after the great plague 3.5 for me Looking forward to the next one. Quick comment that I do love these books I m constantly surprised that they don t seem to be well known I do have to say that this one was a bit disappointing A The mystery was solved well before the end AND it was Hugh s arch nemesis OF COURSE which I m a little over , b I lost count of the number of plots Hugh hatched that involved going back and forth and back and forth and skulking about in the dark, c the bad guys don t get nabbed which, I m sorry, is just unsatisfying espeically since I suspect that means that Sir Simon will pop up again, and see above , d I started to notice that there was WAAAAAY exposition than dialogue and character interaction I come from the old school of show, don t tell, and I just got tired of being told what was happening.Anyway, I ll keep reading them and hope that this book was an anomaly. This was my first time reading a book by Melvin Starr so I was a little skeptical at first if the book would be all that I hoped it would be I love historical fiction and mysteries so when I come across a book the marries the two together I set the bar very high Luckily for me this one turned out to be exactly what I wanted The story focuses on Master Hugh de Singleton, who is a bailiff and surgeon in Bampton in the year 1367 and centers around a murder that takes place in his jurisdiction one autumn day when a man lays dead and he has to bring the culprits to justice He just has to find out who they are and why they killed the victim Melvin Starr created a likable hero in Master Hugh, one that I m not likely to forget I enjoyed his character immensely because he was neither too pretentious like some sleuths can be and he wasn t a pushover either He had a great sense of right and wrong and I loved how much Hugh loved his wife Kate and their baby girl Bessie He had a strong moral compass and I respected the fact that because of circumstances brought on by the murder case that he was willing to resign from his post as Bailiff in order to help a man who is unjustly punished and condemned to death I thought that the way that the story of The Tainted Coin was told in a wonderful way The author did an outstanding job with the writing I love the amount of detail that went into creating an authentic setting for the novel and I could tell the author has a great love for the time period because you can tell everything was constructed with the utmost care resulting in a fantastically realistic story in a time long ago past The drama, characters, plot, and the historical details and use of words and descriptions were wonderful once they were all pieced together and I m very glad I gave this novel a chance While this novel is the fifth novel in the Hugh de Singleton series I had no trouble following the story line and this can absolutely be read as a standalone The story kept me guessing and the author threw in enough twists and turns to keep me on my toes and keep me intrigued and I loved that while the novel had a fair amount of intrigue and action it still remained what I would consider a cozy mystery Overall, I was impressed with this novel and cannot wait to read the other books in the series All of the preceding novels have been added to my wish list and I highly recommend this book to everyone If you like historical mysteries this might just be the perfect read for you I received a free copy of this book for review purposes I was not compensated in anyway to give a positive review and all thoughts and opinions herein are my own.
Mel Starr was born and grew up in Kalamazoo, Michigan After graduating with a MA in history from Western Michigan University in 1970, he taught history in Michigan public schools for thirty nine years, thirty five of those in Portage, MI, where he retired in 2003 as chairman of the social studies department of Portage Northern High School Mel and his wife, Susan, have two daughters and seven gra
- 240 pages
- The Tainted Coin (Hugh de Singleton, Surgeon Chronicles #5)
- Melvin R. Starr
- 17 November 2018 Melvin R. Starr