Dissolution (The Shardlake series, 1)

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Dissolution (The Shardlake series, 1)

Dissolution (The Shardlake series, 1)

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The burning question is whether or not Matthew Shardlake can accomplish his mission before both he and Mark become victims themselves of the evil that seems to infuse Scarnsea.

We are also treated to a fulsome use of 15th century vernacular, which adds to the atmosphere without often requiring us to consult the dictionary. The Catholic Church in 1536 is being eradicated in Britain and the Dissolution of the monasteries has begun – by 1540 no monasteries would be left. A Crown agent beheaded in a monastery is a big deal, it could be the spark that sets off the tinderbox, a whole country up in flames. Shardlake is an intelligent astute lawyer, that suffers physical deformity as a hunchback, which creates a perception that somehow he is incapable, and wouldn't that be a mistake. I have a special affinity for historical mysteries and Dissolution is one of the good examples of this genre, at least for me.

Hampered by the lack of any modern assistance, Shardlake must solve the crimes using only his own wits and the assistance of Mark Poer his young, if rather rebellious, protégé. Una época especialmente interesante, llena de conspiraciones, persecuciones, luchas de poder, asesinatos y, por encima de todo eso, el grave conflicto entre católicos y protestantes, con un Cromwell convertido en el ángel exterminador de católicos y especialmente de los “depravados” monjes. There is a strong feeling of period, especially when the author describes cities and towns such as London. He [Thomas Cromwell] was holding up a casket [small box] and studying the contents with a contemptuous frown, his wide, narrow-lipped mouth down-turned above his lantern chin. Even though I read a lot of history, I've never been a fan of historical fiction and so when one of the book clubs to which I belong picked this novel as a monthly read, I approached it with some trepidation.

In this, we are first introduced to Shardlake, a confidant of Cromwell, who is given a commission by the latter to investigate a murder committed at a monastery in Scarnsea.It is a first-rate murder mystery and one of the most atmospheric historical novels I’ve read in years. The monastery was founded in the 12th century and abandoned during the Dissolution of the Monasteries. Beyond that, I don’t know, because I find that mostly my major characters are formed subconsciously, and often take on a life of their own on the page and move away from what was planned—like the abbot, mentioned above. Lord Cromwell had the trick of staring fixedly at you, unblinking, until you felt compelled to drop your gaze. L'avvocato Matthew Shardlake diventerà un amico, lo conosci, soffri con lui, senti le sue paure in un periodo storico dove la giustizia non regna supremo, la medicina come la conosciamo noi non esiste … consiglio la lettura partendo dal primo libro - L'Enigma del Gallo Nero poi La scomparsa del Fuoco Greco e poi gli altri 5.

Sansom weaves them all together wonderfully and pushes to develop key relationships throughout that will help propel the story forward. Right now it is 1537 and Shardlake can offer some assurances to the abbot that the monastery can still be saved. Passers by only see Shardlake as a cripple, but the reader sees his pride, insecurities, longing for companionship, and devotion to a cause that he believes is sincere.Dr Matthew Shardlake, a reformer and one of the sharpest lawyers in England, is dispatched to solve the murder at all costs and complete the dissolution of the monastery as planned. I will try things by audio, as it may have been my trying to trudge through the book alone that left me soured the first time I tried to digest the plot. The main character, Matthew Shardlake, is a hunchback, English lawyer working for Thomas Cromwell (the architect of the English Reformation). This is a reread for me, the first in this historical series set in Tudor England that introduces and establishes the lawyer, Matthew Shardlake, afflicted by a deformity he was born with, leaving him in constant pain.

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