Short Story Review: The Trebuchet Murder by Susanna Gregory

Set in 1380, The Trebuchet Murder is a historical murder mystery set in Ely Hall at the University of Cambridge.

Brother Edmund is secretary to Prior Richard, warden of Ely Hall, the chosen college for the most promising of students in the Benedictine order.  Brother Henry, the college’s former Professor of Theology has recently died, leaving the position vacant.  It is now up to Prior Richard, with the help of Brother Edmund to find his replacement.

There are three candidates applying for the position: Brother Luke, Brother Jean and Brother Bravin, the latter being greatly detestable to all, but due to circumstances beyond his control, Prior Richard is being leaned upon quite heavily to pick him.

However, when Brother Bravin is found dead, buried beneath the decaying timbers of a trebuchet, Brother Edmund quickly realises that his demise was no accident.  But who was responsible?  Brother Edmund investigates.

The Trebuchet Murder is a captivating tale that quickly engages the reader, bringing medieval Cambridge to life before their eyes.  The characters are realistic and the historical detail greatly enriches the story.

I absolutely loved this short story.  It was clever, and it offered an ending I never expected.  A really enjoyable, quick historical read.  Highly recommended.

This short was found in Murder Through the Ages: A Bumper Anthology of Historical Mysteries, ed. Maxim Jakubowski.

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