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The Heretics of De'Ath (The Chronicles of Brother Hermitage #1)

3.58  ·  Rating Details ·  230 Ratings  ·  34 Reviews
Special tie-in edition to mark the book being released as a major book. Paperback available through Amazon and all good, average and questionable book shops.

England 1066: At the monastery of De'Ath's Dingle, during a completely pointless theological debate, there is a mysterious death.

Routine business for the average investigative medieval monk.

Unfortunately this isn’t a
Kindle Edition, 252 pages
Published by The Funny Book Company (first published November 5th 2010)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Susan Johnson
Aug 20, 2016 Susan Johnson rated it it was ok
I wanted to like this book and I didn't. Historical mysteries are one of my favorite genres and I thought this would be quite interesting and funny to boot. It was neither. The story was confusing, slow to develop and I didn't laugh once.

There is a Conclave at the tiny De'ath Dingle monastery near Lincoln England. I am sure the name was supposed to be funny- De'ath- but it wasn't to me. The discussion at the Conclave was if the Lord got sand in his shoes during his days in the wilderness and s
Judy Lesley
Apr 26, 2016 Judy Lesley rated it it was ok
I received an e-ARC of this novel through NetGalley and The Funny Book Company.

Count on me every time to be willing to read a mystery novel about medieval times in England. Then add the word "humorous" to the description and watch me hesitate for a fraction of a second to try to figure out what could have been all that funny about conditions of that time. However, hesitation aside, I still decided to read this book. The result for me was, the book was okay, but trying to apply humor to each situ
Brian Clapper
May 05, 2013 Brian Clapper rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Well, no more 99¢ books for me.

The plot is reasonable enough, and the author clearly has worked hard to weave several (well, two) related narratives together. But, man, could this thing have used an editor. Misspellings and a lack of essential punctuation abound, making reading the book like stumbling over rocks during what is supposed to be a pleasant afternoon's walk. Worse, though, are the inconsistencies (wait, you called him a "Duke" here, but an "Earl" last chapter). Finally, there are the
Jay Williams
May 04, 2016 Jay Williams rated it it was ok
I wanted so much to enjoy this book. It seemed to appeal to my warped sense of humor. However, it just wasn't funny or entertaining. I forced myself to finish it in the desperate hope that it would click, but I was disappointed. Many of the characters were caricatures that were quite well done, but they were let down in the story telling. .Perhaps this would be better as a movie where images would replace the poor visualizations.
May 11, 2016 Burgoo rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, read-in-2016
It's a comedic take on the medieval mystery subgenre. Your reaction will vary (see the varied star responses?) based on how you react to the humor. It wasn't really my bag.
Sorcha Hysmith
Nov 20, 2013 Sorcha Hysmith rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
don't pass this one up! Absolutely and utterly gut-busting hysterical, wry and dry, witty and quite educated. One of the best surprises I've come across in recent years. If you like Python-esque humour and historical mysteries, BUY THIS BOOK!!
Jan 25, 2016 Joan rated it it was ok
Seriously, there are too many books in the world to waste time on this one. Fumbling characterization, flimsy plot designed around a few mediocre one-liners.
Italo Italophiles
May 21, 2016 Italo Italophiles rated it it was amazing
Clever, very funny take on Britain's medieval period. Reminiscent of TV's Blackadder and Monty Python's medieval film. It is for people with well-developed senses of humor, especially schooled in British humor. It is not for passive readers, who are not used to reading humorous books which require active readers to picture the scenes to understand much of the humor.

There are Blackadder type humorous rants, and Monty Pythonesque physical humor. The comic prose is delicious, like this bit:

Tiz. T.
Jun 11, 2016 Tiz. T. rated it it was amazing
This book is not what you expect.

If you expect a serious tale of an investigator monk with a rich background in the times, a'la Brother Cadfael or Sister Fidelma, you won't find it.

If you expect a lighthearted, amusing story about medieval people, you won't find it neither.

This book is both and is neither. It is simultaneously incredibly funny and astonishing profound.

Because really, how else but through irony can you convey to your average person of our century what life really was in a time wi
May 08, 2016 Laura rated it did not like it
Shelves: netgalley, satire
I requested this book because it talked about being like Monty Phython. That this book was supposed to be brilliant satire. That this book was funny.

It was not funny. It was not fun. It was boring.

I suppose the author having the main character continuing to be an idiot, and repeating the things that showed he was an idiot is supposed to be funny. It is not.

Each time I tried to continue to read this book, I thought of all the other books that were out there that were actually funny. All the other
John Lee
I dont know why but I thought that this was a book by one of my favourite authors ( Paul Doherty or Bernard Knight)under another of their Pseudonyms but as I got further into the book, I started to doubt this as the story was written in a far from serious manner.

Imagine, if you will, a cross between the 1977 Terry Gilliam film Jabberwocky starring Micheal Palin, Blackadder and a even a touch of Monty Python. I can easily imagine Alan Rickman ( as the Sheriff of Nottingham)playing the part of Nic
DNF at 20%
Look, I'm not saying I only enjoy high-brow jokes that also make deep and meaningful satirical
observations about the current political situation. Really not. Tell me a dick-joke and I'll laugh. Tell me a second dick-joke and I will still laugh. Probably also about the third. But once we get past the tenth I will ask if you know any other kind of jokes.
Not that all jokes in this book are dick-jokes.
Some are also about feces, which is honestly not what I had in mind when I asked for som
Jul 04, 2016 Jessica rated it it was ok
Shelves: netgalley
Tongue-in-cheek doesn't begin to touch the writing style of this book. I've never read Christopher Moore, but from what I know about his writing style, I suspect if he chose to write a medieval mystery (without any fantasy elements), it would probably resemble this book.

Since I like my medieval mysteries a little more straightforward, with fewer despicable characters and fewer gross-out/crass/disgusting subtexts, this book just wasn't for me. Ellis Peters, Ariana Franklin, Sharon Kay Penman...Ho
May 25, 2016 Jane rated it really liked it
Shelves: humor, fiction
To truly enjoy this book, you probably need a fair knowledge of monastery life, ecclesiastical argument and murder mysteries. On the other hand, you could probably simply try not to compare it to anything else until its dry wit and turns of phrase begin to kindle everything from quick giggles to laughing out loud. Of course, prudes might not be able to tell the difference between bathroom humor and the more imaginative turns of events sprinkled through its pages. But dang, enjoy the difficulties ...more
This may not be my favorite time period for mystery fiction, but it is a humour that had me rolling in the aisles. Wry humour? Sly humour? The interaction between characters, and their observations on people, places, and occurrences are sometimes sneaky, and sometimes blatantly hilarious. The plot basic is represented by the publisher's blurb, so no need to rehash. Sit back and enjoy, but no drinking or eating while doing so unless prepared to spew when caught unawares by a sneaky bit.
May 17, 2016 Vanessa rated it it was ok
If you enjoy parody and fairly broad humor (plus you've always wanted those damn Brother Cadfael books hoisted by their own petard), maybe this is the book for you. This is niche fiction at its most niche-y; maybe of it as a low grade version of Murder By Death and the spirit of the novel may move you.

I received an ecopy from the publishers and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Tiffany Crayne
May 12, 2016 Tiffany Crayne rated it really liked it
I received a copy of this book for free from

This book was really entertaining. The story plays out like a vaudeville show with lots of puns, physical humor, and word play. The characters were fun and there's even an unexpected twist at the end. Definitely going to read the rest of this series!
Lexie Conyngham
Feb 04, 2015 Lexie Conyngham rated it liked it
As full of errors and typos as it is empty of appropriately used commas, but still very entertaining in a Carry On style. I liked Brother Hermitage who is an endearing hero, and there were several extremely funny moments. Slightly puzzled, though, by the Earl who became a Duke for a few pages and then reverted to his Earldom ...
Jun 13, 2014 Jeffrey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My type of quirky book!
A very fun read, with a deftly drawn characters and interesting way to unravel what's really going on. "King's Investigator," indeed! It's obviously better to have a well connected and astute tailor on hand to help you think!
Apr 05, 2016 Barbara rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, historical
A highly entertaining farce. The ending was hilarious.

My edition didn't have the Earl becoming a Duke before being demoted back to an Earl that some other reviews noted. However, Betty still has work to do as there were a fair few typos remaining.
Elizabeth Dodd
May 14, 2016 Elizabeth Dodd rated it really liked it
A marvelously unexpected story line.
Who among these characters is to be believed? Who is what he pretends to be?
An entertaining look at the time and the workings of both the church and the royalty.
And in the midst of all this is the monk.
Sep 27, 2013 Victor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I normally like my historical fiction accurate - in this case I'll make an exception. This is played for laughs and it does that well. Keep 'em coming, Howard! ...and where can I buy one of Wat's tapestries?
Nov 14, 2015 Edwinnaarden rated it really liked it
At first I didn't like it that much as it is written differently than most other thrillers, more based on words than action. I then began to appreciate the writing style more and now enjoy these books more.
Maggie Gust
Sep 19, 2016 Maggie Gust rated it did not like it
Shelves: neverwillfinish
Did not care for this at all. I thought it was going to funny, irreverent but funny. Within a few pages, there was homosexual activity in the monastery. It seemed to me to cross the line between humor and just plain bashing of religious life. Not my cup of tea.
Kate Sherrod
May 25, 2015 Kate Sherrod rated it really liked it
Not as laugh out loud funny as The Domesday Book, No Not That One -- until the denouement, which abruptly brings all into hilarious and farcical context... and sets up a ridiculous new conspiracy theory about a very famous event in English history. Brilliant.
Jan 22, 2016 Euraylie rated it really liked it
Shelves: historical, comedy
Hilarious start to an unusual and quirky medieval mystery series.
And in some ways probably a more accurate representation of the Middle Ages than many another novel in this genre.
Joanna McDarby
Feb 27, 2013 Joanna McDarby rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book. I loved the characters, the were funny and human and the mystery kept me going until the end.
Jun 01, 2016 Chipchick rated it did not like it
It just wasn't my cup of tea. I didn't actually finish it, 10 pages was enough to know it wasn't for me.
John Tipton
Jan 06, 2015 John Tipton rated it really liked it
Very very good

Never have read a book of this period that was this funny. The author has created an unbelievable cast characters.
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Goodreads Authors...: Chronicles of Brother Hermitage 1 4 May 06, 2016 11:11PM  
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Howard of Warwick is but a humble chronicler with the blind luck to stumble upon manuscripts which describe the goings on of Brother Hermitage and his companion Wat the weaver.

His work has been heard, seen and read, most of it accompanied by laughter and some of it by money. His peers have even seen fit to recognize his unworthy efforts with a prize for making up stories.

There are now five novels
More about Howard of Warwick...

Other Books in the Series

The Chronicles of Brother Hermitage (5 books)
  • The Garderobe of Death
  • The Tapestry of Death
  • Hermitage, Wat and Some Murder or Other (The Chronicles of Brother Hermitage)
  • Brother Hermitage. The Shorts

Share This Book

“Having the Church interested in your business was like a Viking asking after your wife and daughters. Someone was going to end up shafted.” 2 likes
“His nose was needle-like, drawing attention like a screaming baby at a funeral. A baby with a massive nose.” 1 likes
More quotes…