Ellis Peters Books In Order

Publication Order of Inspector Felse Books

Fallen into the Pit (1951) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Death and the Joyful Woman (1961) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Flight of a Witch (1964) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Nice Derangement of Epitaphs (1965) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Piper on the Mountain (1966) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Black is the Colour of My True Love's Heart (1967) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Grass Widow's Tale (1968) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The House of Green Turf (1969) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Mourning Raga (1969) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Knocker on Death's Door (1970) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Death to the Landlords (1972) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
City of Gold and Shadows (1973) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Rainbow's End (1978) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Heaven Tree Books

The Heaven Tree (1960) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Green Branch (1962) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Scarlet Seed (1963) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Brothers Of Gwynedd Books

Sunrise in the West (1974) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Dragon at Noonday (1975) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Hounds of Sunset (1976) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Afterglow and Nightfall (1977) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Brother Cadfael Books

A Morbid Taste for Bones (1977) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
One Corpse Too Many (1979) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Monk's Hood (1980) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
St. Peter's Fair (1981) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Leper of Saint Giles (1981) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Virgin in the Ice (1982) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Sanctuary Sparrow (1982) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Devil's Novice (1983) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Dead Man's Ransom (1984) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Pilgrim of Hate (1984) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
An Excellent Mystery (1985) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Raven in the Foregate (1986) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Rose Rent (1986) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Hermit of Eyton Forest (1987) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Confession of Brother Haluin (1988) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Heretic's Apprentice (1989) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Rare Benedictine (1988) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Potter's Field (1989) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Summer of the Danes (1991) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Holy Thief (1992) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Brother Cadfael's Penance (1994) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Hortensius, Friend of Nero (1936) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Iron-Bound (1936) Description  Book  eBook
Day Star (1937) Description  Book  eBook
Murder in the Dispensary (1938) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The City Lies Foursquare (1939) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Death Comes By Post (1940) Description  Book  eBook
Masters of the Parachute Mail (1940) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Ordinary People (1941) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
She Goes to War (1942) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Eighth Champion of Christendom (1945) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Reluctant Odyssey (1946) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Warfare Accomplished (1947) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Fair Young Phoenix (1948) Description  Book  eBook
By Firelight (1948) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Lost Children (1951) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Holiday with Violence (1952) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
This Rough Magic (1953) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Most Loving Mere Folly (1953) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Soldier at the Door (1954) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Means of Grace (1956) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Death Mask (1959) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Will and the Deed (1960) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Funeral of Figaro (1962) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Bloody Field by Shrewsbury (1972) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Horn of Roland (1974) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Never Pick Up Hitch-Hikers! (1976) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Marriage of Meggotta (1979) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Short Story Collections

The Assize of the Dying (1958) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Lily Hand and Other Stories (1965) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Trinity Cat and Other Mysteries (2006) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

The Coast of Bohemia (1950) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Shropshire (1992) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Strongholds and Sanctuaries (1993) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Edith Mary Pargeter popularly known by the pen name Ellis Peters was born just before the beginning of First World War on September 28, 1983, in Horsehay, Shropshire, England. She was daughter to Edmund Valentine, a clerk and timekeeper at a local ironworks and Edith Hordley Pargeter. Ellis was the last born in a family of three children. Her brother and eldest sibling was named Ellis, the name she later adopted as her pseudonym while her sister who preceded her was named Margaret.

The family lived in a small community dominated by the Horsehay works and situated a short distance from Dawley in the centre of the east Shropshire coalfield. The family loved music and the children had been encouraged to start reading from a tender age. The atmosphere at Peters’ home was sympathetic, encouraging and vibrant. Her mother happened to have influenced her life and that of her siblings greatly, as the novelist was quoted once saying.

Ellis attended Dawley Church of England elementary School in Shropshire and later Coalbrookdale High School for Girls. When in elementary, she had to walk four times a day, to and from school as there was no provision for lunch at the time. All through school she would show interest in composition and art. She participated in various contest and competitions where she scooped a number of wards and certificates. It was while in high school that her special interest and passion in writing was realized and encouraged and eventually turned out to be a great part of her life.

As she neared the end of her time in Coalbrookdale, she took the Oxford local exam and passed and later in 1931 she did the Oxford Higher exam. After she left school she stayed at home to study for the executive division of the Civil Service. The contest for a place was great and even though she did great in written English exam, she couldn’t do as well in Mathematics. It was also in the 1930s that she worked as a pharmacist’s assistant and in the early 1940s she served in the Women’s Royal Navy Service. It was while at the Royal Naval Service that her writing career set off and her first books were published.

Her Writing Life

Edith Mary Pargeter had a Welsh ancestry and this influenced most of her writing. Many of her short stories and books happen to have been set in Wales and its borderlands, with others even having Welsh protagonist evidence.

Starting in the mid 1930’s, Edith Mary Pargeter would write historical fiction and crime novels. She would at times write using her real name and sometimes under several of her pseudonyms. She had written her fist book when she was only 15 years old and still in school. This she sent to Heinemann the publishers. Her first novel to ever be published was, Hortensius, Friend of Nero’ and this was before she had even reached the age of 20. The book had first been rejected but in 1936 it was published. It was this first stride of success that marked the start of her 60 year writing career in which she published more than 70 books. Between 1936 (when she made her first publication) and 1947, Edith is recorded to have written 14 books including a War time trilogy that boosted her profile to a national level.

Her first novel was published as she still worked as an assistant pharmacist. Between 1940 and 1945 while she served at the Naval Service where she even received the British Empire Medal (1944), Edith happened to develop an interest in Czechoslovakia. It was at the same time that World War II was still on. She felt haunted by the Western powers’ betrayal of that country at Munich.

In 1947 she and her brother visited Czechoslovakia in the brief period between the end of the war and political changes as a result of the nation’s incorporation within the Warsaw pact. Just like many other, Edith felt that the politicians in the country before the war had let the people down. In what apperaed like a simple interest and sympathy for the people of Czechoslovakia turned out to become a lifetime interest in their culture, language and stories of the country. She visited the area numerous times in her next 21 years. When the war ended, she translated numerous volumes of prose and poetry from Czech and Slovak and kept on writing on her own fiction.

In 1951, she published her first detective book, Fallen into the Pit’, which featured George Felse ( a policeman) and his family. The characters appeared in more books including Death and the Joyful Woman’ and Rainbow’s End (1979). She used the name Ellis Peters on all books written about Felse family mysteries. In these series the Felse family is caught up in the middle of serious crimes with George huddled up with the task to unravel the truth that will distinguish the culprits from the innocent.

In 1977 she started writing a series of detective novels set in and around the Benedictine abbey at Shrewsbury in the 12th C. The first book in the series was A Morbid Taste for Bones: A Medieval Whodunnit . In the book series’ she combined detailed depiction of medieval life with the investigation of a crime and a sub-romantic plot. The books enjoyed immense popularity. The sub-romantic sub- plot in some of her works gained lots of importance in the series she worked on. The main character who also happens to be the detective in the series is monk Cadfael, a former crusader that tends to the abbey’s garden. Some titles of the series books include Saint Peter’s Fair (1981), The Virgin in the Ice (1982), The Confession of Brother Haluin (1988), One Corpse Too Many (1979), The Raven in the Foregate (1987), The Devil’s Novice (1984), and The Heretic’s Apprentice (1989). Most of the Cadfael mystery books were adapted for Television with Derek Jacobi playing the main role.

Edith passed on at her home in Madeley, Shropshire after having returned from hospital following a stroke. She was 82 when she died on 14th October 1995. In 1997, in efforts to honor her memory, a stained glass window depicting St.Benedict was put up in Shrewsbury Abbey.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Ellis Peters