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Grave Goods  By  cover art

Grave Goods

By: Ariana Franklin
Narrated by: Kate Reading
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Publisher's Summary

The "richly detailed, almost indecently thrilling" (New York Times) follow-up to The Serpent's Tale

When a fire at Glastonbury Abbey reveals two skeletons, rumor has it they may belong to King Arthur and Queen Guinevere. King Henry II hopes so, for it would help him put down a rebellion in Wales, where the legend of Celtic savior Arthur is strong. To make certain, he sends Adelia Aguilar, his Mistress of the Art of Death, to Glastonbury to examine the skeletons. 

At the same time, the investigation into the abbey fire will be overseen by the Bishop of St. Albans, father of Adelia's daughter. Trouble is, someone at Glastonbury doesn't want either mystery solved and is prepared to kill to prevent it....

©2009 Ariana Franklin (P)2009 Penguin

What listeners say about Grave Goods

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Third is Second

I loved this series from the beginning. The first was the best, and this, the third novel, is second. Number two left me unsatisfied.

As always, Ms. Franklin's history is well researched, and her people are more real than some of my neighbors. No one is all good or bad. Henry II is an enlightened but manipulative monarch. The Bishop Of St. Albans, Rowley, is as conflicted about his passion for Adelia as before. And Adelia herself is as intelligent, independent & inquisitive as always. Some of the actions might be a bit far fetched to us in the 21st century. I can never get my head around the all encompassing religious faith, laws, and pressure from the Catholic church that was the norm in the 12th century. The Pope had the power to bring down monarchs, and the church could declare a death sentence on anyone it decided was a heretic.

At the end of the book, you know some changes will be made. I hope those changes have King Henry
and Bishop Rowley playing larger parts in book#4.
We'll have to wait now, alas, to see.

15 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

A surprising thrill ride

I loved it. A few inconsistencies here and there, and yes, I anticipated most of the plot moves but who cares? The dialog was spot on, the characters well rounded and real. The reader, Kate Reading, was terrific. Her voice brought the various people alive. She is surprising adept at male voices. Am I the only person who hears her Henry speaking the words of the author, Franklin, and sees Peter O'Toole? Adelia's insight into the nature of the men who turn out to be her friends and saviors is wonderful to listen to. This was one of those books I couldn't wait to hear the end of, yet I did not want it to end. I can't wait for more!

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent writing and narration

I found this series when I rejoined audible and was hooked within the first five minutes of listening. I have nothing but good things to say about both the writing and the narration! The interaction among the characters is interesting, humorous and believable and the who-dunnit in each novel is never easy to figure out, something I appreciate immensely! No bodice rippers disguised as a weakly written mystery - yea!

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Very enjoyable

A winner! This one is even better than the one before. Franklin gives us an engaging story, an intriguing mystery, and a good sense of place. The reading is excellent, with distinctly different accents and voices for different characters.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Grave Goods

Because Grave Goods employed some gravely bad language that, to me, was entirely gratuitous, I can not rate it higher than 3 nor can I say I'll seek the next one in this series. Call me prudish but a couple of "F" bombs or "G_D"s derails my interest every time. Did enjoy the strong and vocal heroine. Should she ever become more ladylike, I'll be waiting.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Legendary Bones and Tempting the Bishop

In book three of the series, Henry II has summonsed Adelia Aguila to examine the bones of two bodies found at Glastonbury Abbey to determine if they are those of King Arthur and Guinevere. The descriptions of the England of the twelfth century is evident in the descriptions of daily life, customs, superstitions, danger, dirt and filth, as well as the wild beauty of the forests. The language is a lot of fun to listen to as well. Still not accepted as a woman physician, healer or forensic specialist, Adelia poses as a translator for Mansur, who is actually, her assistant and bodyguard, although the king knows and accepts her as who she is. Adelia and the Bishop of St. Albans (Rowley) share a four-year-old child (Allie), conceived prior to Rowley's appointment as Bishop. Adelia turned down Rowley's marriage proposal to remain a doctor, though neither have forgotten the other. The king has assigned the Bishop of St. Albans the duty of determining who caused the fire at the abbey, putting Adelia and Rowley together once again. Excellent mystery, filled with some heart-racing moments of fear and tension.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Ariana Franklin delivers another great story

I really enjoy the books in this series. Kate Reading is a wonderfully talented narrator who brings the stories to life with her voices. I highly recommend these books if you are a fan of historical fiction.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Boring

The best part of his book was the afterward when the author explained some of the historical facts. Otherwise this was a slow moving and horrbly boring book.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

pretty good historical mystery

This was a good historical mystery with acceptable narration, except when the narrator made the major character, who is otherwise indominable, sound weepy and wimpy.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Good Reading

I have read the previous books in this series; this is the best of them. The plotting is now solid, varied and compelling, and some of the mannerisms I found annoying in the first two books have been toned downed down. The heroine is still exasperating, but it now seems a character trait, not a flaw in the storytelling. I still doubt that Salerno in the twelfth century was quite the utopia it is described as, but in all, the series seems on its way to portraying an interesting and enjoyable picture of a distant age.

2 people found this helpful