A Haunt of Murder Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of A Haunt of Murder

This book is part of a series set during the pilgrimage to Canterbury made famous by Geoffrey Chaucer in the fourteenth century. Doherty has each of the pilgrims tell a story and has covered the Knight, the Franklin, the Priest and the Carpenter: this is the tale of the Clerk of Oxford. The pilgrims think they have lost their way having followed the directions of the Miller, a man with a drinking problem, who is supposed to be taking the travellers to Demonhurst Copse, where they are to spend the night. It is getting dark when they find the copse and it is supposed to be haunted.
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The Clerk is elected to tell a story. He tells his companions of Ravenscroft, a castle near Maldon in Essex where several murders have been committed and ghosts of previous occupants are said to exist The protagonist is Ralph, a clerk to Sir John Grasse, constable of the castle, and the latest victim is his betrothed, Beatrice. Beatrice is killed in a fall from the parapet; a serving maid, Phoebe, has had her throat cut and her body found in Devil's Spinney, while a tax collector has been stabbed in a Maldon alley. Ralph is on a mission to find a valuable cross hidden during the Battle of Maldon four hundred years earlier and when there are attempts on his own life he begins to think Beatrice was mistaken for him and the killers are also after the cross.

Some of the narrative also tells us about Beatrice after she was killed. Beatrice chooses not to pass on to the promised afterlife but to try and help Ralph solve her murder. The castle is full of ghosts.
The review of this Book prepared by Penny

Chapter Analysis of A Haunt of Murder

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book descript. of violence and chases 20%Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 30%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 30%How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) 20% How difficult to spot villain?    -   Difficult, but some clues given Time/era of story:    -   1600-1899 Any non-mystery subplot?    -   ghost buddy Crime Thriller    -   Yes Murder Mystery (killer unknown)    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   clerk


Europe    -   Yes European country:    -   England/UK

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   very gorey descriptions deaths/dead bodies Amount of dialog    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

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Paul Doherty Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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