A Prayer for the Damned

Written by Peter Tremayne
Review by Mike Ashworth

Sister Fidelma of Cashel is a dalaigh or advocate of the law courts of 7th century Ireland. The year is AD 668, and the place Cashel. Distinguished guests have arrived for Fidelma’s wedding. Unfortunately, on the eve of the wedding Abbot Ultain of Cill Ria is found murdered, and the King of Connact, who is witnessed fleeing the scene, is charged with murder. However, Fidelma is forced to postpone her wedding when the king demands his right to appoint Fidelma in his defence. But is the Abbot the pious man he was thought to be? Fidelma soon discovers that many of the guests have cause to hate him. As with all Tremayne’s books, the characters and the ambience of the period are evoked in a subtle, natural way that reveals the author’s extensive knowledge without getting in the way of the narrative. Fans of Sister Fidelma will know what to expect and will not be disappointed. There are twists, turns, and red herrings before the final denouement and the killer is revealed. Enjoyable as always.