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Brother Cadfael Mysteries: Dead Man's Ransom (BBC Radio Crimes)

Length: 2 hrs and 14 mins
Categories: Fiction, Historical
4.5 out of 5 stars (93 ratings)

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Summary

A BBC Radio 4 dramatisation of Ellis Peters' thrilling mystery, featuring medieval monk Brother Cadfael.

It is 1141. In Shrewsbury, civil war is tearing the country apart as the bitter feud between King Stephen and Maud shows no sign of abating. Cadfael, safe within the peaceful walls of the Abbey, does not expect to be drawn on to the battlefield - but when a Welsh prisoner of war is brought to him for treatment of a sword-wound, he finds himself embroiled in the conflict. The young soldier is the foster son of the Prince of North Wales, and a prized possession. In fact, he is so valuable that he can be offered in exchange for Gilbert Prescott, the Sheriff of Shrewsbury, who has been captured by the Welsh.

A swap is duly arranged, but when one of the prisoners is found dead before the transaction takes place, the community learns the horrifying truth: there is a murderer in the monastery. Can Cadfael find out who it is?

Starring Philip Madoc, Michael Kitchen and Susannah York, and dramatized by Bert Coules. This recording was previously released on cassette in 1995 and 2000.

©2011 Elis Peters (P)2011 AudioGO Ltd

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Ruined by editing

This is a fair story ruined by the lack of editing out the radio trailers at the beginning and end of what was obviously a radio serialisation. I didn't need the flow of the story to be interrupted with these over and over again nor to hear the last scene repeated a few minutes after hearing it. It may well be a contractual problem but it should have been sorted as it really impacted on the enjoyment of the story. In defence of the actors they were good, especially Philip Madoc who was excellent as Cadfael

7 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Classic whodunit Well Portrayed

This is another great Cadfail story of death and honour in medieval times. the cast carry the story fluently and convincingly. A thoroughly enjoyable story.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars

Badly edited from radio broadcast.

I personally found this very difficult to listen to.
Primarily because I often tend to listen for more than 20/30 mins at a time.
And with this production they stop every broadcast episode, which does not feel long at all, to firstly play (very loud and grating) medieval sounding music, and to then list the entire cast of the production. They then at the beginning of the new episode go through an update of events of the last episode, which you literally just listened to. All this really killed my immersion in the story. I felt like I was listening more to cast names, title music, and updates than actual story.
I found this all so grating that I literally couldn't finish what is a very short audiobook.
The story underneath all this seemed good though.

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Mega Full Cast

Great special effects, and actors, this is a good story, but for me not the best Cadfael story.

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Voice over

loved Cadfaels voice.......just perfect...and whole recording great.its story kept me riveted.and music was inkeeping with the period .

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A wonderful medieval mystery

These actors really bring to life these medieval mysteries. These are well worth a listen.