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Dissolution by C J Sansom

Posted By Claire on July 28, 2009


UK Cover

A review of “Dissolution” by guest reviewer, Tim Ridgway (my husband!).

It must be said that I was not really sure what to expect with this, my first Tudor-period crime thriller, but to sum up Dissolution in three words … it was gripping!

Like many books, the first chapter was a little slow moving, and felt a little like it had been written to a formula – story, story, fact; story, story, fact – but before I noticed, I found myself sneaking away to read another chapter, and by the end I was very pleased with the scene that was set, and the multitude of blind alleys, twists and turns which kept me coming back for more.

Set in the year after the execution of Anne Boleyn, and in the heart of the bloody years where Thomas Cromwell was seeking to remove all power from the monasteries, Dissolution charts the murder of one of the King’s commissioners at Scarnsea monastery on the south coast of England. Seemingly secure in its position, there are many hidden and untold secrets behind the façade of the building. Secrets that must be uncovered.

US Cover

US Cover

Hunchbacked sleuth, Matthew Shardlake, is sent by Cromwell to catch the killer and to keep events at the monastery from the public eye. But almost as soon as Shardlake reaches Scarnsea he becomes embroiled in intrigue and mystery which have him searching his own past, as well as that of the monks.

Dissolution leaves a lasting and clear mental picture of the times, the social pressures on servants, commoners and even those in power. It really fills in the details of life during such turbulent times and above all, it leaves you in the dark until the very last… the perfect recipe for any murder mystery.

Read it, and prepare to uncover the untold secrets of monastic life during Tudor times and the dissolution.

“Dissolution” is available in paperback from Amazon US or Amazon UK. It is the first in the series of thrillers featuring Shardlake. The next book in the series is “Dark Fire”.


2 Responses to “Dissolution by C J Sansom”

  1. Trisha says:

    Have just finished reading this book – one set for my book reading group for September and enjoyed the story. Lots of historical topics weaved throughout and I have to admit that the murderer in my mind must have been one of the monks, so it was q surprise to discover the person who had murdered Cromwelll;s commissioner, Robin Singleton.
    Now want to read the other books in the series.

  2. Baroness Von Reis says:

    Tim,Really sounds like a good read,will have to pick a copy up,on Amazon best Wishes. Baroness Von Reis.

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