Book Review: “Ashes To Ashes” by Mel Starr

February 7, 2016 at 1:19 am | Posted in Books | Leave a comment
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Mel Starr in his new book, “Ashes To Ashes book coverAshes To Ashes” Book Eight in the Hugh de Singleton, Surgeon series published by Monarch Books returns us to Oxford in 1369 for another mystery involving the intrepid bailiff and surgeon.

From the back cover: The morning after the festivities of Midsummer’s Eve, the villagers of Bampton make a grisly discovery

Master Hugh, Kate, and their children attend the Midsummer’s Eve fire. The next morning Hugh hears the passing bell ring from the Church of St. Beornwald, and moments later is summoned. Tenants collecting the ashes to spread upon their fields have found burned bones.

Master Hugh learns of several men of Bampton and nearby villages who have gone missing recently. Most are soon found, some alive, some dead. Master Hugh eventually learns that the bones are those of a bailiff from a nearby manor. Someone has slain him and placed his body in the fire to destroy evidence of murder.

Bailiffs are not popular men; they dictate labor service, collect rents, and enforce other obligations. Has this bailiff died at the hand of some angry tenant? Hugh soon discovers this is not the case. There is quite another reason for murder . . .

Mel Starr has created one of the most interesting detectives ever in Master Hugh. Master Hugh and his wife, Kate, take their family to the Midsummer’s Eve, St. John’s Day fire- A celebration of summer. Then, the next morning as the people are spreading the ashes in the fields bones are found, which is where we get the title Ashes To Ashes. Now Hugh finds out that the deceased was a bailiff, not highly loved, but still deserving of justice and Hugh will go through the possible suspects with all their motives to figure out which one of them did it.  “Ashes To Ashes” is a very exciting book that will keep you engrossed in the characters as well as life in England in the 1300’s.  I have become a huge fan of Mel Starr and am fantastically pleased with his creation: Hugh de Singleton.  These mysteries that he gets involved with are highly complicated and thoroughly enjoyable.  I think Mel Starr is an extremely talented writer who really knows how to tell a story that will grab you and keep you flipping pages until you find out who did it. I am already looking forward to the next book, “Lucifer’s Harvest”.

You can find “Ashes To Ashes” at a discount at

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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Monarch Books.   I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

#AshesToAshes #melstarr #chroniclesofhughdesingletonsurgeon


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