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The Alehouse Murders (Templar Knight Mystery #1)

3.78  ·  Rating Details ·  1,210 Ratings  ·  91 Reviews
A Templar treasure for mystery readers!

An honorable-yet world-weary-Knight Templar solves the mysteries of Medieval England.

After eight years of captivity in the Holy Land, Templar Bascot de Marins escapes with injuries to his body and soul. Now on a sojourn at Lincoln Castle, he hopes to regain his strength, and mend his waning faith-but not even the peace of God's co
Mass Market Paperback, 277 pages
Published September 4th 2007 by Berkley
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Amy Saunders
Jun 11, 2011 Amy Saunders rated it really liked it
So I'm doing some catch-up reading for the Mystery & Suspense Reading Challenge. I started the year off good and then immediately got behind. C'est la vie. My second read is The Alehouse Murders by Maureen Ash, part of the Templar Knight mystery series. As you may have already guessed, it's a medieval murder mystery set in Lincoln, England, in the year 1200. I chose it mostly for the setting. As you may know, I love medieval mysteries and I especially like anything from that particular time ...more
Feb 02, 2008 Jen rated it really liked it
Bascot de Marins is a Templar Knight battling with his faith and the decision of whether to stay in the order or leave. While he is contemplating his future, he is sent to stay with the sheriff of Lincoln (England) and his wife. A string of murders occurs during his stay and he his charged with the task of discovering the murderer.

It was such a pleasure to be transported to the times of Knights, castles, feasts and tournaments in England. I think these kinds of settings are magical for me. And A
Book 1 Templer Brescot Mysteries

A very enjoyable Medieval mystery. It is Summer 1200 AD and Templer Bascot de Marins has returned to England after 7 years of imprisonment and torture by the Sarceans while on Crusade with King Richard. Bascot lost an eye and damaged an ankle through torture, and he has lost much of his faith in the Templer order. Through rest and good meals Bascot is feeling physically better, but emotionally he feels lost, not knowing where his place in the world is anymore. Whi
THE ALEHOUSE MURDERS (Mystery/Historical-Bascot de Marins-England-1200) – G+
Ash, Maureen – 1st in series
Berkeley Prime Crime, 2007, US Paperback – 9780425217658

First Sentence: Heat hung like a sodden blanket over Lincoln town and the surrounding countryside.

Templar Bascot de Marins is recovering from eight years captivity in the Holy Lands. He, along with his mute servant, Gianni, is recovering at Lincoln Castle and trying to decide about his future. Lady Nicolaa is castellan of Lincoln Castle a
Feb 20, 2017 Shauna rated it liked it
An enjoyable murder mystery set in 1200AD Lincoln. This is the first in a series featuring Templar Knight Bascot de Marins. The author manages to evoke a good sense of life in medieval Lincoln and has created an engaging detective in de Marins. I look forward to reading others in the series.
Clare O'Beara
Aug 10, 2015 Clare O'Beara rated it it was amazing
I thoroughly enjoyed this atmospheric mystery, set in England after the Anarchy and during the Crusades. A Templar Knight who was injured and lost an eye has returned from crusading but his quiet recovery in Lincoln castle is disturbed by the lady castellan asking him to look into a foul deed. Four people have been found killed in an alehouse. As an outsider, the knight isn't suspect or related to anyone, and he also isn't busy preparing for the three-day fair.

The research about Lincoln is great
Text Addict
This used-bookstore purchase has introduced me to a new series to follow! Set in early 13th-century Lincoln, England, the book features a convalescing Templar Knight investigating the murders of four people in an alehouse - a crime that even without modern forensic techniques appears increasingly bizarre, given identities of the victims and the "obvious" suspect.

Sir Bascot, Lady Nicolaa, and various other figures (historical and fictional) make strong and believable characters. The setting of m
Linda Finlayson
Apr 29, 2013 Linda Finlayson rated it liked it
A good mystery and the author knows her historical setting well. I just wish I came away with a better sense of what the Knights Templar were all about. Fighting and serving God, I know, but I wanted some insight into how Bascot understood how those two things went together. I guess I'm unfairly comparing this book to Margaret Frazer's Sister Frevisse series, which were as much about why and how a woman became a medieval nun as well as solving mysteries. Having said all that, I'll likely try mor ...more
Jun 25, 2017 Sheila rated it it was amazing
This story was intriguing and I couldn't put it down. All the descriptions about the way people lived back then and the customs and their work was very interesting. I felt a real kinship with the Templar's loss of faith and wondering why God had spared his life and what God's plans are for him. I enjoyed each of the characters, even the murderer. The final explanations behind the 6 murders was unsettling. I enjoyed this very much and look forward to catching up with the Templar's other journeys.
Kale Hobbes
Jan 11, 2017 Kale Hobbes rated it it was amazing
It is an interesting read, a murder/mystery in medieval times, solved by a knight!
I read it years ago, but recently came across it.
Glad I read it again; need to find the other one ... it's here ... somewhere
Jan 12, 2017 Ann rated it liked it
I couldn't help it !! I kept comparing it to the Brother Cadfael Mysteries that I've read and loved! And the author's writing style just didn't seem to draw me in like Elllis Peter's style in writing the aforementioned series. The mystery was interesting enough to keep me reading to the end and I enjoyed the historical context and the description of the Knight's Templar but I ended the book, thinking I'll go back and re-read some more of the Brother Cadfael Mysteries !
Christine Johnson
Set in the Summer of 1200 A.D. Lincoln, England, this mystery is the first in a series of which I shall definitely be reading more.
It is well-researched. The historical details are amazing. The main character, Bascot de Marins, is a Templar Knight who is on leave from the Order after returning to England from being kept prisoner by the Saracens. He is burnt out and disillusioned, wounded in body and spirit. Being literate in an age when few are, he gives steward's service to the chatelaine of th
Jul 11, 2012 Dolly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Mystery fans
This is the first book in the Templar Knight Mystery series by Maureen Ash. It is a fascinating story and reminds me of the Justin de Quincy series by Sharon Kay Penman.

The description of the times in medieval England is interesting and the story is filled with deceit and intrigue. It's a quick read and a decent bit of brain candy, perfect for a summer trip. I really enjoyed this story and will certainly look for more of the books in this series at my local library.

interesting quotes:

"Even thou
Mar 20, 2012 Elli rated it liked it
Recommends it for: anyone into good English medieval mysteries
Recommended to Elli by: Diane, Maude
This was a medieval mystery with the detective being a Templar knight returning from a difficult captivity in the Holy Land. He is accompanied by a youngster, an mute Italian orphan. He is to decide whether to return to the order or go on, on his own. He accepts hospitality at the home of a prominent castellian family in Lincoln. Almost immediately four murders occur, then some more as the story progresses. It's a good story, well written and interestingly presented. It is also based on facts of ...more
I've had this on my BookCrossing shelf for a little bit. I picked it up at a local book sale thinking I might like is, hoping it would lead to a series of books like Ellis Peters' Brother Cadfael or Kate Sedley's Roger the Chapman. (I'm especially bereft because there will be no more of Ariana Franklin's Mistress of the Art of Death series.) I found a decent enough mystery, but not one that grabbed me with the characters. Maybe it's the cold I'm battling, but about 3/4 the way through, I just fo ...more
Oct 18, 2009 Eileen rated it liked it
This is a very nice little medieval murder mistery. On the eve of the Lincoln Fair four bodies are found in an alehouse, including the alehouse owner. Save a young couple, they have no seeming relationship to one another. Lady Nicolaa de la Haye is the castellan of Lincoln Castle, in her own right. She and her husband, Gerarad Camville who is sheriff, are expecting a visit from King John. It would be highly inconvient for them to have four unsolved murders hanging around so she enlists the help ...more
Feb 11, 2017 Vickie rated it it was amazing
A superb story, not only for the mystery that is investigated, but a peek into the lives of the people of that time. I really look forward to reading the rest of this series.
definitely recommend
Lynne Tull
Aug 29, 2016 Lynne Tull rated it really liked it
I am into another medieval mystery series. My library friend keeps recommending and I keep reading her recommendations. This story takes place in the 1200's with the main character being a Knight Templar. I have read some about the Templar's, but this one is on a more personal level and I like learning at that level. It seems more real. It is interesting to me that the people of the time had the same concerns as we do. However, they didn't have the modern conveniences to aid them in their journe ...more
Feb 12, 2012 Kevin rated it liked it
This was a very interesting medieval murder mystery. It’s set about fifty years after the Brother Cadfael series in the time of King John. The series shares much with Peter’s Brother Cadfael series, both feature monks who spent part of their lives fighting the Crusades. Cadfael becomes a monk after his time in the Holy Land, Bascot de Marins the detective in this series served as a Templar Knight in the crusades and was at Acre with king Richard, and has a crisis of faith upon his return to Engl ...more
Jun 29, 2008 Moni added it
I really enjoyed this book. Maureen Ash tells a compelling story set in an historical time. So often historical fiction authors worry too much about the historical setting instead of telling the story. Not so with this book. There is just enough history to wet the appetite without getting in the way. [return]The characters are enjoyable and better yet believable. Bascot, the Templar knight, is a noble character, yet has some of the same flaws as all of us. I enjoyed his evolution throughout the ...more
Feb 08, 2012 Dawn rated it really liked it
After returning from the Holy Land and eight years of captivity with his faith shaken, Knight Templar Bascot de Marins is recovering in Lincoln, England. The Templars have found a place for him in the household of Nicolaa de la Haye, the Sheriff’s wife. In the summer of 1200 AD, on the eve of the fair, several murders are committed in the town and Nicolaa asks Bascot to find out the truth.

I enjoyed the mystery, even though I thought the culprit’s reasoning’s a little far-fetched. Bascot is turni
Mar 31, 2016 Nita rated it really liked it
There was a sense of trying to inhabit the period while reading this and it was pulled off superbly, however the particular style of medieval historical fiction that seems to be nearly all medieval historical fiction is rather predictable after awhile. So the rating is more of my reaction to reading this rather than a judgement on the quality of the book.The book is excellent, it kept me guessing and I am quite a veteran of mystery novels. I liked the characters and it was interesting to underst ...more
Mar 16, 2008 Scot rated it liked it
First in a new historical mystery series. It is 1200 A.D. in Lincolnshire, England, and our detective hero is a pensive one-eyed Templar knight returned from the Crusades. This book is strong in social history description that has been well researched, and abundant use of descriptive details helps the reader easily envision the settings and plot developments. Also will probably help expand vocabulary a bit, as archaic or arcane terms appropriate to the period are deftly interwoven not in a way t ...more
The Templars are the "accidental detective de jour" and several series feature a member of the Order. This particular Templar is recovering from wounds physical and psychological suffered as a p-o-w and slave after the fall of the city of Acre. He has been sent to the city of Lincoln into the household of Nicolaa de la Haye, the castellan of Lincoln castle. It is at her request he begins to investigate the murders.
Well-plotted and the inner circle of characters developed skillfully within the f
Jun 27, 2014 Euraylie rated it liked it
It's a decent start to the series, but still has some bumps to iron out. The murder mystery was good, the protagonist potentially interesting, but there were some problems with the set up.
Instead of our Templar investigator questioning some the witnesses/suspects, we got chapters from their POV which were just exposition dumps. The dialogues in those instances seemed more for the benefit for the reader than organic conversations between people who know each other.
Also, I think going forward the
After escaping from prison, a Templar Knight returns home to Lincoln broken in body and spirit. A local landowner takes him in along with the mute urchin he brought home from his travels. When four bodies are found dead at the alehouse right before the fair, she sends him off to investigate. Things don't add up - the alehouse owner is bashed on the head the night before, but the other three are stabbed with no blood, a strong sense of ale with not a drop spilled, and maybe dead for longer. Lots ...more
About to re-read for Historical Mystery Group meeting this month..

Re-read the book for tomorrow night's meeting. I really enjoyed it, both times around. Ash gives you an in-depth historical setting not just a broad brush picture. I learned things about Templar life in this book that I do not remember from previous books I've read. The use of two known historic figures from 1200 Lincoln, England was also a plus. I thought the majority of the characters were well drawn, both high and low. I certai
Susan Clark
Jan 22, 2016 Susan Clark rated it really liked it
This is the first of a series by Maureen Ash, and I'm looking forward to reading the others. Bascot de Marins, a Templar injured in the Crusades, is a unique and engaging protagonist, and her period detail of Lincoln town is textured and revealing, without ever getting in the way. I often choose historical mysteries for the setting, stay for the writing and the characters, and find satisfaction in solving the "puzzle" parts, which must be both challenging and fair. Ash does an excellent job in a ...more
Apr 06, 2009 Lawrence rated it it was ok
I read this book because I like Ellis Peters' Brother Cadfael books so much and was hoping for another medieval-themed mystery series. I liked this book OK, but not as much as the Brother Cadfael series. Perhaps, I should try the next in the series? What does everyone think?

One thing: The Brother Cadfael books have maps. This one did not although there was a fair amount of "locational writing" --- as in "to the east" and "to the west" and the "ABC Highroad" and the "River XYZ". I think that maps
Sandra Strange
Sep 07, 2011 Sandra Strange rated it liked it
Shelves: mysteries
This mystery, set during the times of Robin Hood and King John, draws on actual historical figures and history of the Lincoln area of England to weave a mystery that educates on Medieval English politics, culture, sociology and daily life as it beguiles the reader with its puzzle and its solution by a unique "detective," a former Templar. The frank treatment of prostitution and other facts of life of the day makes the mystery suitable mainly for adults, not kids, however.
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Maureen Ash was born in London, England, and has had a lifelong interest in British medieval history. Visits to castle ruins and old churches have provided the inspiration for her novels. She enjoys Celtic music, browsing in bookstores and Belgian chocolate. Maureen now lives on Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada.
More about Maureen Ash...

Other Books in the Series

Templar Knight Mystery (9 books)
  • Death of a Squire (Templar Knight Mystery #2)
  • A Plague of Poison (Templar Knight Mystery #3)
  • Murder for Christ's Mass (Templar Knight Mystery #4)
  • Shroud of Dishonour (Templar Knight Mystery #5)
  • A Deadly Penance (Templar Night Mystery #6)
  • The Canterbury Murders (Templar Knight Mystery, #7)
  • A Holy Vengeance (Templar Knight Mystery, #8)
  • Sins of Inheritance (Templar Knight Mystery, #9)

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“It may surprise you to find that the older one gets the more we appreciate the wisdom of those we did not think possessed it. (Bascot)” 3 likes
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