Mistress of the Art of Death

8 books in series
4.5 out of 5 stars 3,348 ratings

Mistress of the Art of Death Publisher's Summary

In medieval Cambridge, four children have been murdered. The Catholic townsfolk blame their Jewish neighbors, so to save them from the rioting mob, the Cambridge Jews are placed under the protection of the king. Henry II is no friend to the Jews - or anyone, really - but he believes in law and order, and he desperately needs the taxes he receives from Jewish merchants. Hoping scientific investigation will help to catch the true killer, Henry calls on his cousin, the King of Sicily, whose subjects are the best medical experts in Europe, and asks for his finest "master of the art of death", the earliest form of medical examiner. The Italian doctor chosen for this task is a young prodigy from the University of Salerno, an expert in the science of anatomy and the art of detection. But her name is Adelia; the king has sent a "mistress of the art of death".

In a backward and superstitious country like England, Adelia faces danger at every turn. As she examines the victims and retraces their last steps, she must conceal her true identity in order to avoid accusations of witchcraft. Along the way, she's assisted by one of the king's tax collectors, Sir Rowley Picot, a man with a personal stake in the investigation. A former Crusader knight, Rowley may be a needed friend - or the fiend for whom they are searching.

As Adelia's investigation takes her along Cambridge's shadowy river paths, and behind the closed doors of its churches and nunneries, the hunt intensifies and the killer prepares to strike again.

©2007 Ariana Franklin (P)2007 Penguin Audio, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc., and Books on Tape. All rights reserved.
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  • Book 1

    • Mistress of the Art of Death

    • A Novel
    • By: Ariana Franklin
    • Narrated by: Rosalyn Landor
    • Length: 13 hrs and 12 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4 out of 5 stars 1,443
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 712
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 709

    In medieval England, four children have been murdered, and the townsfolk blame their Jewish neighbors. The doctor chosen to investigate is a woman, Adelia. As she examines the victims and retraces their last steps, she must conceal her true identity in order to avoid accusations of witchcraft. Along the way, she's assisted by Sir Rowley Picot, a man with a personal stake in the investigation. A former Crusader knight, Rowley may be a needed friend - or the fiend for whom they are searching.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • good story wonderfully set

    • By Jami E. Nettles on 02-17-07

    Regular price: $31.50

    • The Mistress of the Art of Death

    • Mistress Of The Art Of Death 1
    • By: Ariana Franklin
    • Narrated by: Diana Bishop
    • Length: 12 hrs and 52 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4 out of 5 stars 15
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 14
    • Story
      4 out of 5 stars 14

    In Cambridge a child has been hideously murdered and other children have disappeared. The Jews, made scapegoats by the all-powerful Christian clergy, have been forced to retreat into the castle to avoid slaughter by angry townspeople. Henry, King of England, is displeased. The Jews provide a large part of his revenue and therefore the real killer must be found, and quickly.

    Regular price: $25.68

  • Book 2

    • The Serpent's Tale

    • By: Ariana Franklin
    • Narrated by: Kate Reading
    • Length: 12 hrs and 14 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 626
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 394
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 396

    Adelia is back in action! Ariana Franklin combines the best of modern forensic thrillers with the detail and drama of medieval fiction in this enthralling historical novel, the second in the Mistress of the Art of Death series.

    • 4 out of 5 stars
    • Great series

    • By Sylvia on 01-30-11

    Regular price: $31.50

    • The Death Maze

    • Mistress Of The Art Of Death 2
    • By: Ariana Franklin
    • Narrated by: Diana Bishop
    • Length: 11 hrs and 56 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4 out of 5 stars 17
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 16
    • Story
      4 out of 5 stars 17

    Since solving a particularly nasty case of child murder using her forensic skills, Adelia Aguilar is deemed too valuable to send back to the School of Medicine in Salerno. Instead, King Henry II has decided to keep her in England. This is bad news for Adelia – in twelfth-century England women doctors are regarded with great suspicion. So, with her illegitimate child, Adelia is forced to live and practise in the secrecy of Cambridgeshire’s fenland. But at Henry’s court, terrible things are happening.

    Regular price: $23.55

  • Book 3

    • Grave Goods

    • By: Ariana Franklin
    • Narrated by: Kate Reading
    • Length: 10 hrs and 49 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 714
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 429
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 426

    England, 1176. Beautiful, tranquil Glastonbury Abbey - one of England's holiest sites, and believed by some to be King Arthur's sacred Isle of Avalon - has been burned almost to the ground. The arsonist remains at large, but the fire has uncovered something even more shocking: two hidden skeletons, a man and a woman. The skeletons' height and age send rumors flying - are the remains those of Arthur and Guinevere?

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • A surprising thrill ride

    • By Wadie on 09-20-09

    Regular price: $31.50

    • Relics of the Dead

    • Mistress Of The Art Of Death 3
    • By: Ariana Franklin
    • Narrated by: Diana Bishop
    • Length: 10 hrs and 29 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 9
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 9
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 9

    On hearing of this momentous discovery, King Henry II demands evidence that the legendary Arthur is dead. So he calls upon his Mistress of the Art of Death, anatomist Adelia Aguilar, to examine the bones. But someone doesn’t want the skeletons identified – and is prepared to kill in order to prevent it…

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Intriguing mystery, fascinating historical context

    • By Alison on 03-05-12

    Regular price: $22.71

  • Book 4

    • A Murderous Procession

    • A Mistress of the Art of Death Novel
    • By: Ariana Franklin
    • Narrated by: Jill Tanner
    • Length: 12 hrs and 25 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 516
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 349
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 350

    National best-selling author Ariana Franklin resumes her Mistress of the Art of Death series with A Murderous Procession. In 1176, King Henry II’s daughter is set to marry the king of Sicily. But when several wedding guests are murdered during the procession, Adelia must uncover who is behind the killings and who is the killer’s real target.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • The end of a fantastic series?

    • By Betty on 04-09-11

    Regular price: $27.99

    • The Assassin's Prayer

    • Mistress Of The Art Of Death 4
    • By: Ariana Franklin
    • Narrated by: Diana Bishop
    • Length: 10 hrs and 52 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 8
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 7
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 7

    Adelia Aguilar is to accompany 10-year-old Princess Joanna on her thousand-mile journey to marry the King of Sicily. They must take with them the legendary sword Excalibur. And so Adelia sets sail with the golden princess and her lavish procession of nobles, musicians, servants, laundresses, grooms, luggage and treasure. But when members of the procession begin to die and it looks as though Adelia is to blame, there are dangerous accusations of witchcraft.

    Regular price: $23.55