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The Confession of Brother Haluin (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #15)
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The Confession of Brother Haluin (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael #15)

4.05 of 5 stars 4.05  ·  rating details  ·  2,475 ratings  ·  91 reviews
Brother Cadfael is witness to a shocking near-death confession and accompanies a fellow Benedictine on a dangerous quest for redemption.
Paperback, 205 pages
Published April 5th 2001 by Warner Books (NY) (first published 1988)
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Though I read this back in 2005, I recently re-read it so as to continue my pilgrimage through the Cadfael novels in order. I enjoyed it even more this time around.

This time Cadfael leaves Wales behind and heads East toward Hales and Elford in the company of a lame Benedictine Brother Haluin. Together they hobble (literally as well as figuratively) through a decades old mystery only to encounter the book's only murder well toward the end. While the exact identity of that killer is never unmaske
I like the Brother Cadfael books, with their fascinating peek into medieval times, herbal knowledge, and the awareness that people don't change, only time and circumstances do. This one is the story about utter selfishness and its power to create havoc in more than one life. Brother Cadfael is his usual sensible compassionate self.
It is the winter of 1142 in The Confession of Brother Haluin, the Fifteenth Chronicle of Brother Cadfael. A heavy snowfall has threatened the roof at the guest hall. While the Brothers are working on repairs, Brother Haluin falls. His injury is so serious that Abbot Radulfus and Brother Cadfael hear his confession. He had an evil story to tell and when he doesn't die, but recovers, Brother Haluin decides to make a journey of expiation. Cadfael accompanies him on this treacherous trip.
This one was slightly more predictable than An Excellent Mystery--I managed to guess the conclusion, though once again it wasn't an actual whodunit. Peters really does that slow build-up thing so well. The titular confession happens in the first twenty pages and I sat there thinking, what is this all about? I appreciated that Brother Cadfael was more involved in figuring everything out, but also that he's not a detective in the sense that he gives the final revelation. He served as witness, and ...more
M Christopher
Clearly, it was a mistake to try to read all of the Cadfael Chronicles in relatively short order. I was less than a quarter through this entry when I realized that I'd already figured out exactly how the rest of the book was going to go. By the time I was a third of the way through, I was annoyed at the leisurely pace. At the halfway point, I'd had enough. I read the last sentence of the four or five remaining chapters and called it quits -- I'd been exactly right.

I don't know if the author was
This was, so far, my favorite of the Brother Cadfael Chronicles ... If a murder myster could possibly be described as "sweet", this is what comes to my mind when I try to review this book. The brother who is highlighted in this book came to the Shrewsbury monastery of St. Peter and St. Paul at age 18 and lived an impeccable life of reverent service to God. It wasn't until he was helping clean the snow off the rectory during a particularly hard winter that he falls, comes near to death, and unbu ...more
I began the Brother Cadfael chronicles years ago in paperback form and enjoy them even more with Stephen Thorne reading them to me! These are genteel adventures that transport you back to the 12th century, very well researched. The literary quality of this series is always top notch and I could listen to this narrator all day every day. I would recommend beginning with the first 2 from this series in order, A Morbid Taste for Bones followed by One Corpse Too Many. They set up the rest of the ser ...more
A re-read of this fifteenth book in the classic medieval mystery series featuring the herbalist/monk, Brother Cadfael. Cadfael accompanies much younger monk Brother Haluin, recently crippled in a near-fatal accident involving an ice dam on the roof collaspsing on him, to a manor home several days' journey from Shrewsbury as Haluin vows to make peace with a woman whom he believes he has wronged. Traveling through perilous weather on crutches, the going is slow, and the response is not what is exp ...more
The Confession of Brother Haluin reminds me of the only other mediocre Cadfael book I've read, An Excellent Mystery, in that is slow-paced, does not have particularly engaging characters, and is not really much of a mystery at all. It also reminds me of the last Cadfael book, Brother Cadfael's Penance, in that it's not much of a historical mystery but is still pretty solid historical fiction. True, Confession is not as good as Penance, but I advised readers to skip An Excellent Mystery and I wil ...more
One of my favorite series. As always, well plotted with interesting characters and situations. Listened to the audio version read by Patrick Tull who is perfect for these books.
This is one of my favorite mystery series, historic or otherwise. I loved watching the series on BBC, so much so that I bought it as a boxed set so I can watch whenever I need a fix of Derek Jacobi as the serene Brother Cadfael. I also have the series on the keeper shelf in omnibus form. It's not often that a I find a new-to-me story in the series, but I did when this arrived from Simply Books and I put in the disk player in the MINI.
I am not as fond of the Brother Cadfael on-the-road stories.
It is the winter of 1142 and Brother Haluin is a young monk at the Benedictine Abbey of St. Peter and St Paul. While helping repair the roof he falls and sustains multiple injuries. It is feared he may not recover and he is given a deathbed confession. He confesses to a sin that no one knew of or suspected, but he does not die. When he has made a sufficient recovery to move about with the aid of crutches, Haluin begins a journey of penance for the wrong he committed and Brother Cadfael is chosen ...more
When you can see some of what is coming at you for pages in a mystery, then it is not doing what it should be doing. This is the problem I found with The Confession of Brother Haluin. Previously when Peters has sent Hugh Beringar to court then we have court intrigue find its way to Shrewbury.

This time, we do not. We find very little in the way of additional detail about Saint Peter and St. Paul's though we do hear about the brothers who work in the scriptorium as that is where Haluin has found h
As usual in this series, this book begins with a date (December 1142), and with a summary of faraway events in the ongoing civil war between Empress Maud and King Stephen. "All to do over again" is the essence of it. But there's a hint of a possible solution, with the arrival of the 10-year-old Henry Plantagenet.

The accident that makes Brother Haluin fear his death is at hand occurs only after Hugh Beringar leaves. And it's the accident that begins the shocking part, which I must warn those of
While helping with roof repairs at the Abbey, Brother Haluin was trying to clear snow from another part of the roof when he slips and falls the 40 feet from roof to ground with snow and ice coming down with him. He is so seriously injured that no one expects him to recover. Even Brother Haluin expects it's the end and makes his final confession. But recover he does and determines to make a pilgrimage in response to his confession. It will be a struggle because of the injuries he sustained. Cadf ...more
Brother Cadfael is a 12th century Benedictine monk who retired to the monastery of St Peter and St Paul at Shrewsbury in England after having been a Crusader and a sailor. He now tends the abbey's herb garden to make healing remedies and spices for cooking. Using his knowledge of human nature and the human body, he often solves murder mysteries. He is an honest enough soul.

This fifteenth chronicle of Brother Cadfael opens in December, 1142, with the fulfillment of ominous predictions from the we
In the particularly bad winter of 1142, the guest hall at the Abbey of St. Peter and St. Paul had lost part of its roof, and Brother Haluin sustained grave injuries in a fall from the roof while trying to repair it. In what Haluin thought was a deathbed confession, he told a priest and Brother Cadfael of a long-ago love affair with Bertrade deClary. The girl had become pregnant and died during an attempted abortion. But Haluin recovered, and learned to walk with crutches on his misshapen feet. ...more
1st Recorded Reading: June 19, 2006.

I am coming along nicely in my quest to read all the Brother Cadfael mysteries; this book that I finished last night is #15 of the series, and there are #20 novels (plus one book of three short stories) altogether. I found this particular book to be of a slightly different order than usual; the obligatory dead body does not show up until late in the book, and the mystery mainly has to do with events that happened some eighteen years ago. (And for those not wis

A cold, cold case, The Confession of Brother Haluin, set in the 1100's deals with a mysterious death of 18 years earlier. Brothers Gadfael and Haluin return to the scene of the crime intending a pilgrimige of atonement.

I would have rated this novel much higher, if there was more... what do I call it?... stress, pressure, conflict - The Confession of Brother Haluin is a medievil cozy murder mystery. [Definition of Cozy mystery: "Cozy mysteries, also referred to simply as "cozies," are a subgenre

This is the first dud of the series so far, but for a Cadfael book a dud is still a comfortable three stars.

I didn't particularly like the titular Brother Haluin. He's so unbending, so intent in exacting every ounce of penance he believes is his due for whatever his faults. He's reminds me of both Brother Columbanus (A Morbid Taste for Bones) and Brother Eluric (The Rose Rent). Haluin has Columanus's pride but lacks his nearly naked ambition. Eluric also (figuratively) flogged himself for his si
The Confession of Brother Haluin is a very pleasant, light weight mystery that can make for a pleasant afternoon read. Unfortunately, Peters gives away the inevitable ending less than half-way through the book, leaving the reader only the pleasant, descriptive writing style to sustain the final chapters. The mystery is also presented quite late in the book compared to her other works, and practically solves itself on the same page. Good, but not great.
Although I solved the mystery pretty early on in this book this is one of my favourites of the series. Once again Peters' descriptions of peoples' personalities draws you in. Her descriptions are absolutely poetic, and sometimes I read them several times simply to enjoy the words. All her characters have such depth and humanity. This wasn't much of a mystery but it was a well-written, enjoyable story and good addition to the Brother Cadfael series.

Ellis Peters always writes vivid stories that paint a rich canvas full of poignant characters with plots and twists abounding on every page. The pages capture the reader's attention and make it difficult to set this book down. This story is another jewel among the numerous stories about Cadfael that you are sure to enjoy.
The Brother Cadfael books are consistently a treat in providing good historical information as well as a delightful story line. This book was well-written and was enjoyable. My disappointment was in being able to solve the mystery too soon in the book. I found the solution far too early in the book.
Rachel (Kalanadi)
Brother Haluin was awfully self-centered and carries around a lot of "It's all about ME and how I feel!" guilt. Things blow up when he makes his deathbed confession but then...doesn't die.

I didn't care for this story much because Haluin should have been reined in much more by Abbot Radolfus ("You just fell off a roof and now you want to go walk on your broken feet on a journey to the grave of some woman who's been dead 18 years?"). Also, Brother Cadfael feels oddly shunted into the story; you e
Amanda Meggs
There wasn't any surprises in no. 15 of Cadfael's stories. It was fairly obvious from the introduction of each new character what their role would be and how the story was to continue. Despite this, i still enjoyed it, as I like the fairly slow pace of the monastic tales.
I thought this was another reread, but I didn't remember any of it as I was reading the story. Luminous prose, a more than satisfactory end, even if all the little lines weren't completely tied off, and definitely another reason to like Brother Cadfael.
I enjoyed this - but at times the plot seemed contrived. If only people would tell the truth - and others seek out the truth - years of wrong doing and agony could be avoided. But then, there would be no mystery stories to read.
I don't really get the whole Catholic penance thing, and I figured out the whole daughter thing very early on. However, it is a Brother Cadfael book, so a nice, gentle story to be enjoyed - not delved too deeply in. :)
This book was recommended by a friend and was the first of this author's that I have read. I was able to figure out where the book was going and who did it, but the book was so well written it did not detract in any way from the story. I would definitely read more from this author.
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A pseudonym used by Edith Pargeter.

Edith Mary Pargeter, OBE, BEM (September 28, 1913 in Horsehay, Shropshire, England –October 14, 1995) was a prolific author of works in many categories, especially history and historical fiction, and was also honoured for her translations of Czech classics; she is probably best known for her murder mysteries, both historical and modern. Born in the village of Hor
More about Ellis Peters...

Other Books in the Series

Chronicles of Brother Cadfael (1 - 10 of 20 books)
  • A Morbid Taste for Bones (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #1)
  • One Corpse Too Many (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #2)
  • Monk's Hood (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #3)
  • St. Peter's Fair (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #4)
  • The Leper of Saint Giles (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #5)
  • The Virgin in the Ice (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #6)
  • The Sanctuary Sparrow (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael #7)
  • The Devil's Novice (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #8)
  • Dead Man's Ransom (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #9)
  • The Pilgrim of Hate (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #10)
A Morbid Taste for Bones (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #1) One Corpse Too Many (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #2) The Leper of Saint Giles (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #5) Monk's Hood (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #3) St. Peter's Fair (Chronicles of Brother Cadfael, #4)

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