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Ashes of the Elements (Hawkenlye Mysteries #2)

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  414 Ratings  ·  33 Reviews
In this, Book II of the Hawkenlye Trilogy, the Abbess Helewise takes on another strange case with her French partner, Josse d'Acquin. A lumberjack in the Wealken forest has been found dead. The locals would have it that the mythical Forest People are to blame for his violent end. But when the Abbess Helewise steps in to investigate, she thinks a supernatural solution too e ...more
ebook, 256 pages
Published May 21st 2013 by Minotaur Books (first published May 4th 2000)
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The second in the “Hawkenlye Mysteries”, in the times of Richard the Lionheart. Alys Clare doesn’t get to the standards of Ellis Peters novels. Even so, her installments are pleasant enough to read, the plot flows and keep you interested. Maybe some things about the Forest People are a bit far-fetched. Who knows? The growing friendship between Abbess Helewise and Josse d'Acquin is the best part of the book. As for the murders themselves, that’s maybe the less interesting part.
Nothing much, just
La segunda entrega de “Los misterios de la Abadía”, en la época de Ricardo Corazón de León. Parece evidente que, en cuanto a calidad se refiere, Alys Clare no llega al nivel de las novelas de Peter Ellis, que son de una temática muy similar. Aún así, la novela se deja llevar, y el argumento te puede garantizar una lectura como mínimo agradable y facilona. Particularmente destacaría la creciente amistad entre la abadesa y Josse d'Acquin, que es, quizás, de donde salen los mejores diálogos. La res ...more
ASHES OF THE ELEMENTS (Historical-England-1100s) – G
Clare, Alys – 2nd in series
Hodder & Stoughton, 2000- UK Hardcover – ISBN 0340739339
*** Abbess Helewise discovers a dead body by nearly stepping on it. The man had been killed by a spear with a highly decorative point. Although the Sheriff is willing to blame the murder on the “Forest People,” a group who live and wander through the forest practicing pagan ceremonies, Helewise doesn’t accept this. Enlisting the help of her friend Josse d’Acq
Abbess Helewise of Hawkenlye Abbey stumbles over a dead body, a poacher, stabbed through the heart with a flint-headed spear near the edge of a forest. The sheriff of the district pooh-poohs the crime as the work of the Wild Folk living in the forest, who travel around so there is no chance of catching them; in the sheriff's book, the case is closed. Her friend Sir Josse investigates. There is another murder of the poacher's friend, this time the man is struck down with a dagger. A local noblema ...more
May 16, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
What is it that possesses some historical mystery writers to run completely off the rails into the supernatural? I mean, if you want to write an alt-history paranormal series, do that. Might even be fun to read. But don't start a series with a perfectly unexceptional and straightforward historical murder mystery containing nothing more mystical than the meditative benefits of prayer and then serve up druid fanfic as the sequel.
Mary Beth
Oct 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Second book of the series and was better than the first. I liked the way the characters are being developed. Storyline for the time period was believable.
Megan Watson
Sensationalist and sort of...silly. But trying really hard to be Ellis Peters.
Kim Headlee
Murder and mystery collide with religious conflict to invade the sanctity of Hawkenlye Abbey in this competent installment of Clare's Abbess Helewise series.

A peasant man found murdered on the fringe of the vast and wild Wealden Forest does not raise eyebrows, given the violent nature of 12th century England, until Abbess Helewise realizes his death came by an unusual flint-headed spear, as expertly crafted as it was wielded. The obtuse sheriff, swift to blame the elusive Forest People closes th
Nov 14, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime, series, historical
This is the second book in this series, following on from Fortune Like the Moon and featuring the sleuthing duo of Abbess Helewise and Josse D'Acquin.

The abbess has a nasty surprise waiting for her at the edge of the nearby forest when she literally trips over the corpse of a local man, who was killed (in the opinion of the stereotypical incompetent local lawman) by the mysterious 'forest people'. On his return from France, Josse finds himself drawn into the mystery, not to mention trying to fig
P.D.R. Lindsay

Alys Clare writes well. She has interesting characters, a reasonable amount of historical detail and puts together a clever plot. The main female character is an abbess under the patronage of Queen Elanor at the time of the squabbles between King Richard and his brothers. There is a male MC who was a crusading knight now turned landowner who helps the Abbess sort out problem deaths and disappearances.

If I had found this as the first of her books though I would not have read more. Not because it
Ana Elena Romero
Nueva aventura de la abadesa Helewise y del caballeroSir Josse en la que tendrán que desentrañar ciertas muertes misteriosas ocurridas en la profundidad del bosque.
Aunque se presenta como una novela de suspense con la intención de resolver los asesinatos que se producen, hay que decir que no es una novela policíaca al uso. Ni siquiera se apela a la inteligencia de los protagonistas para resolver los misterios sino que estos van resolviéndose solos al ir presentando la autora sucesivos acontecimi
Stephen L. Moss
Dec 07, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the second of Alys Clare's Hawkenlye mysteries, featuring the crime-solving duo of Abbess Helewise of Hawkenlye Abbey and Sir Josse the knight. This story concerns mysterious deaths in the nearby ancient forest, and rumors of strange forest people who may or may not exist.

I enjoyed reading this story and I'm moving right on to the next. It is well-written, engaging, and a fun read. The reason I gave it three stars instead of the four I gave the first book is that there are some supernatu
Jul 11, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, england, medieval
The body of Hamm Robinson is found at the edge of the forest with a spear protruding from his back. Sheriff Pelham believes this is an open-and-shut case of murder by the Forest People. Abbess Helewise doesn’t believe such lore. Soon after when Josse D’Acquin pays a social visit to the Abbey, Helewise tells him and he begins to investigate. Can another explanation be found?
I enjoyed this more than the first one and that was quite good. Perhaps it's because this time I could let the series stan
Apr 30, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyed this book even though it's not something I'd normally choose - I got it from a charity stall where it was '3 books for £X' and chose this just to make up the numbers. I'm glad I did though it was great, well-written and a page-turner. They spoke like us and had to laugh at the builders working on Josse's house who were slow and making his kitchen take ages!

I loved the elements of the Pagan/Druidic people especially as both Josse and Helewise accepted them and didn't just dismiss them as
Katie Bee
May 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016-books-read
A lot of mystic paganism in this book, but also a good whodunnit. Helewise and Josse become closer, and solve another series of deaths. In addition, they decide to (view spoiler) It's an interesting moral line they walk.

I enjoyed the book. Clare continues to have a deft hand for characterization, and I fell in love with both of the young girls
Mary Leek
I enjoyed this book and will read more of the series. The knight and Abbess make an interesting team and the secondary characters add to the story rather than confuse it. I only gave it a 3 because I think it was either a bit over-edited or a bit under-thought-0ut when, on at least a couple of occasions, Josse seems short-tempered with little provocation - makes me think a significant part of what made him that way was edited out - but 3 is still a good number and I'll read more of her work.
Aug 17, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Book #2 of the Hawkenlye mysteries by Alys Clare. The plot grabs you from the first line. Short but tight main plot and sub-plots. Established characters that are being slowly developed as readers work their way through the books (which are sequentially written). This book deals with a clash of two cultures, two religious beliefs. A scary tale with murders, a full moon, and forests both forbidding and ancient.

NOT for young readers (graphic sexual parts)!
Jul 07, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So, I read this for my book club. It seemed a bit odd to be reading a murder mystery set in ancient times...but I tried to keep an open mind. Overall, pretty good although there were a few parts that I found rather unnecessary...but I'm sure the author had good reason to keep them in. Anyway, there is an abbey, townspeople, strange folk who live in the woods. It all adds up to an entertaining read. Perhaps i'll read the other two in the trilogy.
Jun 05, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle-archive
I liked this book a lot. It felt as if, without the need to do the laborious groundwork of setting up the series and the characters, the story was allowed space to work for itself. The 'crime' was clear, and the problems around it sufficiently perplexing to make the perpetrator difficult to spot amongst all the red herrings. Good clean fun, with a bit of history thrown in.
This book was an ok read. I like the mystery part, but I just had a difficult time reading this book. This book didn't flow well and I really had to concentrate when reading it to keep my self from getting distracted.
Although the ending was telegraphed a bit, the plot was satisfyingly complex without being messy, the continuing characters develop pleasantly and the setting is historically consistent. So this is a good read.
Jan 04, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Sir Josse investigates some deaths in the forest for Abbess Helewise. There are two young women in the abbey who have secrets, and Josse and the Abbess witness a ceremony of the forest people. The book is somewhat fantasy and doesn't appear to have a lot of history.
Oct 24, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nice middle ages mystery series.
Sep 12, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book. It reminded me of Cadfael with the clash of culture and attitudes. I would read more in the series.
Fine? Could have done with more sex-positive matriarchal Druids. Nice to see the abbess out adventuring. So much sociopolitical handwavery, but when cozy is the goal that's to be expected.
Jul 20, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries, 2015-reads
Rating Clarification: 2.5 Stars
Aug 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love this series.
Ma'lis Wendt
Dec 13, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This second book in the Hawkenlye medieval mystery series is even better than the first. The characters and the historical atmosphere are becoming more complex and interesting.
Alissa Mccarthy
The second in the series, it was interesting and engaging; a fun read.
Jan 02, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the 2nd book in the Hawkenlye series and it was even better than the first book. I thought I knew exactly what had happened, but I was wrong.
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Alys Clare is the pen name used by Elizabeth Harris for the Hawkenlye series of historical mysteries.

Alys Clare is the pseudonym of a novelist with some 20 published works to her name. Brought up in the countryside close to where the Hawkenlye Novels are set, she went to school in Tonbridge and later studied archaeology at the University of Kent. She lives for part of the year in Brittany, in a re
More about Alys Clare...

Other Books in the Series

Hawkenlye Mysteries (1 - 10 of 17 books)
  • Fortune Like the Moon (Hawkenlye Mysteries, #1)
  • The Tavern in the Morning (Hawkenlye Mysteries, #3)
  • The Chatter of the Maidens (Hawkenlye Mysteries, #4)
  • The Faithful Dead (Hawkenlye Mysteries, #5)
  • A Dark Night Hidden (Hawkenlye Mysteries, #6)
  • Whiter Than the Lily (Hawkenlye Mysteries, #7)
  • Girl in a Red Tunic (Hawkenlye Mysteries, #8)
  • Heart of Ice (Hawkenlye Mysteries, #9)
  • The Enchanter's Forest (Hawkenlye Mysteries, #10)
  • The Paths of the Air (Hawkenlye Mysteries, #11)