Ellis Peters Books

Author Ellis Peters (whose real name is Edith Mary Pargeter) was born in Horsehay, Shropshire, England on September 28, 1913 and passed away at the age of 82 (after going back home after she had a stroke, the date was October 14, 1995) in Madeley, Shopshire. Ellis Peters is one of her many different pen names that she used. Pargeter worked in an administrative role in the Women’s Royal Naval Service during the second World War; she reached petty officer by New Years Day 1944 when she was given British Empire Medal. She would devote the rest of her life to writing (either fiction that was well researched or non-fiction). Pargeter also learned Czech and would publish translations (that won awards) of Czech poetry and prose into English. This came about after she got very interested in Czech culture and the language, after she visited Czechoslovakia. Her work on the “Cadfael Chronicles” are given credit for making historical novels popular; although they were not called that when she first started writing them. She never attended college but was self taught in subjects that interested her. Pargeter would later get an honorary master’s from Birmingham University. Although she never married, she did fall in love with a man and would remain friends with him after he married someone else.

Order of Chronicles of Brother Cadfael Series

Order of Second World War Trilogy Series

# Read Title Published
1 The Eighth Champion of Christendom 1945
2 Reluctant Odyssey 1946
3 Warfare Accomplished 1947

Order of Felse Investigations Series

Order of Brothers of Gwynedd Series

# Read Title Published
1 Sunrise in the West 1974
2 The Dragon at Noonday 1976
3 The Hounds of Sunset 1976
4 Afterglow and Nightfall 1977

Order of Heaven Tree Series

# Read Title Published
1 The Heaven Tree 1960
2 The Green Branch 1962
3 The Scarlet Seed 1963

Order of Ellis Peters Standalone Novels

Order of Ellis Peters Short Story Collections

Order of Ellis Peters Non-Fiction Books

# Read Title Published
1 The Coast of Bohemia 1950
2 Shropshire 1992
3 Strongholds and Sanctuaries 1993
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As Ellis Peters, she has written the “George Felse and Family” series, the “Brother Cadfael” series, and other novels.


She has won a British Crime Writers Association gave her a Silver Dagger for “Monk’s Hood”, and an Edgar Award for “Death and the Joyful Woman” in 1963. Cartier also gave her their Diamond Dagger in 1993 for her body of work.


The “Cadfael Chronicles” have been adapted into a television show in Britain, it was called “Cadfael” and had thirteen 75 minute episodes produced.


For those readers looking to get into novels by Ellis Peters, this section will help with that. It will go over the novels “A Morbid Taste for Bones” and“One Corpse Too Many”, “Monk’s Hood”.

A Morbid Taste for Bones: This is the first novel in the “Cadfael Chronicles” series and was released in the year 1977. This novel is set in the year August 1137. Saint Winifred’s grave is in a remote mountain village called Gwytherin, which is in Wales. The head of Shrewsbury Abbey (who is full of ambition) wants to get the remains for his Benedictine order. Brother Cadfael (a native of Wales) is sent on the journey. He finds that the villagers are divided on the offer they have for the remains. They have a lot of passion in them too. Their taste for bones leads to murder, something that does not surprise him. He is worldly after all. The one who was the most opposed to the grave being moved has been killed with an arrow. Some believe the killer is Winifred. A carnal hand did the killing Brother Cadfael knows this for sure. His plans to catch a killer might also unearth a case of justice and love. Profit of sin may lead to scandal or possibly Cadfael’s own end.

One Corpse Too Many: This is the second novel in the “Cadfael Chronicles” series and was released in the year 1979. This novel is set in the year August 1138. A smart killer is able to dump a strangled corpse on the field of battle. Brother Cadfael finds the body and is supposed to put the clues together, small though they may be. There is a single flower, a missing treasure, and a girl who is wearing a boy’s clothing. All to catch a killer and show their black heart.

Monk’s Hood: This is the third novel in the “Cadfael Chronicles” series and was released in the year 1980. This novel is set in the year December 1138. Gervase, along with his wife, and his servants is a guest of Shrewsbury Abbey of Saints Paul and Peter. He suddenly takes ill while there. The Abbey has Brother Cadfael working there, otherwise they would be without his skills as a herbalist. He goes to the man’s bedside, and has two surprises waiting for him. Master Bonel’s wife is the very woman (who is named Richildis) that he loved before he became a monk. It seems the reason that Gervase has been ill, is because he has been given monk’s hood oil that came from Cadfael’s own herbarium. It is lethal stuff. The sheriff thinks that the killer is Edwin, Richildis’ son. Cadfael does not agree, and believes that he is innocent. He puts his knowledge of the human heart and herbs to good use to figure out how the man was killed.