Sacrilege by SJ Parris

76%

15 Critic Reviews

Parris creates some genuine chills in scenes set in spooky crypts, and masterfully mixes political intrigue, action, and sleuthing.
-Publishers Weekly

Synopsis

A gripping historical thriller set in sixteenth-century England and centered on the highly secretive cult of Saint Thomas Becket, the twelfth-century archbishop murdered in Canterbury Cathedral.
 
London, summer of 1584: Radical philosopher, ex-monk, and spy Giordano Bruno suspects he is being followed by an old enemy. He is shocked to discover that his pursuer is in fact Sophia Underhill, a young woman with whom he was once in love. When Bruno learns that Sophia has been accused of murdering her husband, a prominent magistrate in Canterbury, he agrees to do anything he can to help clear her name.
    
In the city that was once England's greatest center of pilgrimage, Bruno begins to uncover unsuspected secrets that point to the dead man being part of a larger and more dangerous plot in the making. He must turn his detective's eye on history—on Saint Thomas Becket, the twelfth-century archbishop murdered in Canterbury Cathedral, and on the legend surrounding the disappearance of his body—in order to solve the crime.
    
As Bruno's feelings for Sophia grow more intense, so does his fear that another murder is about to take place—perhaps his own. But more than Bruno's life is at stake in this vividly rendered, impeccably researched, and addictively page-turning whodunit—the stability of the kingdom hangs in the balance as Bruno hunts down a brutal murderer in the shadows of England's most ancient cathedral.
 

About SJ Parris

See more books from this Author
S. J. PARRIS is the pseudonym of Stephanie Merritt. Since graduating from Cambridge she has worked as a critic and feature writer for a variety of newspapers and magazines as well as for radio and television. She currently writes for The Observer and The Guardian and is the author of five books.
 
Published April 10, 2012 by Anchor. 434 pages
Genres: Crime, History, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Religion & Spirituality. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Sacrilege
All: 15 | Positive: 12 | Negative: 3

Kirkus

Below average
Reviewed by Kirkus Reviews on Feb 16 2012

Densely textured but slow-moving, with a mystery whose tangled mess of multiple plots and plotters is only partly resolved by Bruno’s trial for murder, attempted murder and larceny.

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Publishers Weekly

Excellent
Reviewed by Jennifer Joel on Feb 13 2012

Parris creates some genuine chills in scenes set in spooky crypts, and masterfully mixes political intrigue, action, and sleuthing.

Read Full Review of Sacrilege | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

Examiner

Excellent
Reviewed by Rory O'Connor on Mar 18 2012

This novel is absolutely worth checking out if you enjoy well-written historical fiction and a good mystery.

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Book Reporter

Excellent
Reviewed by Ray Palen on Apr 27 2012

SACRILEGE breathes life into 16th-century Europe, and her protagonist is one of the most engaging characters ever created for the historical fiction genre.

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Historical Novel Society

Excellent
Reviewed by Wisteria Leigh on May 01 2012

Parris provides a sumptuously rich setting with an absorbing entangled plotline that will keep the reader on a precipice of sudden death.

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Fredericksburg.com

Excellent
Reviewed by Lucia Anderson on May 20 2012

The politics of Elizabethan England play a part, but it’s the personal relationships that are front and center. A good read.

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The Crime Writer's Association

Excellent
Reviewed by Judge on May 25 2012

This is the third book to feature the real-life sixteenth-century monk Giordano Bruno as sleuth, and the character is becoming even more complex and interesting

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Book Loons

Good
Reviewed by Hilary Williamson on Apr 01 2012

I look forward to reading about it, and highly recommend this series to anyone who appreciates a well researched historical thriller.

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She Reads Novels

Below average
Reviewed by She Reads Novels on May 29 2012

I did enjoy Sacrilege but I don’t think I liked it enough to want to read more books in this series.

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Promoting Crime Fiction

Good
Reviewed by Sue Lord on May 21 2012

There are plenty of well-rounded characters and action. Suffice it to say the ending has a twist and sets up the scenario for the next book in the series.

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Vyses

Good
Reviewed by Majkia on Apr 21 2012

Wonderful characterizations, complex and realistically drawn settings, bring the world of the 1580s to life.

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A Novel Affair

Good
Reviewed by A Novel Affair on Apr 10 2012

Easily a five star novel from a master storyteller of historical suspense!

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Book Habitue

Below average
Reviewed by Britt on Mar 30 2012

I do have to say, though, that Bruno's consistent desire to pin things on people because he thinks they're guilty and wants them to be, when the facts point elsewhere, is getting old.

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In Julie's Opinion

Good
Reviewed by Julie Witt on Mar 29 2012

I can't get across how much I loved this book and can't WAIT to read the other two books in the series, as well as any other books S.J. Parris has written or will write!

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Lisa's Books

Good
Reviewed by Lisa on Mar 26 2012

I hadn't read any books by S. J. Parris before but found Sacrilege an entertaining and enjoyable read and look forward to reading the rest of the series.

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Reader Rating for Sacrilege
76%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 82 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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Nicole Petticord

Nicole Petticord 5 Sep 2013

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MICHELLE RUST 5 Sep 2013

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