Good books about the Middle Ages, including both history and fiction

THE BEST BOOKS I’VE READ ABOUT THE MIDDLE AGES

READABLE HISTORIES BY HISTORIANS

THE BRIGHT AGES: A NEW HISTORY OF MEDIEVAL EUROPE BY MATTHEW GABRIELE AND DAVID M. PERRY (2021) 336 PAGES ★★★★☆ — A FRESH LOOK AT THE HISTORY OF THE MIDDLE AGES

POWERS AND THRONES: A NEW HISTORY OF THE MIDDLE AGES BY DAN JONES (2021) 802 PAGES ★★★★☆ — CHANGE IN THE MIDDLE AGES CAME THICK AND FAST

DEEPLY RESEARCHED HISTORICAL FICTION

AGINCOURT BY BERNARD CORNWELL (2008) 467 PAGES ★★★★★ — WHEN WAR WAS PERSONAL AND FACE-TO-FACE

THE LONG SHIPS BY FRANS B. BENGTSSON (1941) 530 PAGES ★★★★★ — A VIKING SAGA REMINISCENT OF MYTH AND LEGEND

CATHEDRAL BY BEN HOPKINS (2021) 545 PAGES ★★★★★ — THIS BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN NOVEL ILLUMINATES LIFE IN MEDIEVAL EUROPE

THE EVENING AND THE MORNING (KINGSBRIDGE #1) BY KEN FOLLETT (2020) 926 PAGES ★★★★☆ — KEN FOLLETT SETS UP THE KINGSBRIDGE TRILOGY IN A PREQUEL

A COLUMN OF FIRE (KINGSBRIDGE #4) BY KEN FOLLETT (2017) 923 PAGES ★★★★☆ — KEN FOLLETT’S 16TH-CENTURY KINGSBRIDGE SAGA: CHRISTIANS KILLING CHRISTIANS

THE KINGMAKER’S DAUGHTER (PLANTAGENET & TUDOR NOVELS #4) BY PHILIPPA GREGORY (2012) 434 PAGES ★★★★☆ — NOTHING NOBLE ABOUT THE NOBILITY IN 15TH CENTURY ENGLAND

A BURNABLE BOOK (JOHN GOWER #1 OF 2) BY BRUCE HOLSINGER (2014) 276 PAGES ★★★★☆ — A PLOT TO ASSASSINATE THE KING IN MEDIEVAL ENGLAND

THE CADFAEL CHRONICLES

A MORBID TASTE FOR BONES (BROTHER CADFAEL #1) BY ELLIS PETERS (1977) 213 PAGES ★★★★★ — REVIEWING THE FIRST BOOK IN THE DELIGHTFUL BROTHER CADFAEL SERIES

ONE CORPSE TOO MANY (BROTHER CADFAEL #2) BY ELLIS PETERS (1979) 292 PAGES ★★★★☆ — BROTHER CADFAEL, THE PERFECT DETECTIVE FOR THE MIDDLE AGES

MONK’S HOOD (CADFAEL CHRONICLES #3) BY ELLIS PETERS (1980) 286 PAGES ★★★★☆ — HAS HUMAN NATURE CHANGED SINCE BROTHER CADFAEL’S TIME?

SAINT PETER’S FAIR (BROTHER CADFAEL #4) BY ELLIS PETERS (1981) 272 PAGES ★★★★☆ — THE CADFAEL CHRONICLES HIGHLIGHT THE HISTORY OF MEDIEVAL ENGLAND

THE LEPER OF ST. GILES (BROTHER CADFAEL #5) BY ELLIS PETERS (1981) 224 PAGES ★★★★★ — BROTHER CADFAEL STARS IN A GRIPPING MEDIEVAL MURDER MYSTERY

THE VIRGIN IN THE ICE (BROTHER CADFAEL #6) BY ELLIS PETERS (1982) 285 PAGES ★★★★☆ — ORGANIZED CRIME MEDIEVAL STYLE, IN A COMPLEX BROTHER CADFAEL MYSTERY

THE SANCTUARY SPARROW (CADFAEL #7) BY ELLIS PETERS (1983) 289 PAGES ★★★★☆ — A COZY MYSTERY SET IN 12TH-CENTURY ENGLAND

TWO REVEALING TIME TRAVEL NOVELS

DOOMSDAY BOOK — OXFORD TIME TRAVEL #2 OF 5 (1992) 592 PAGES ★★★★★ BY CONNIE WILLIS — A TIME-TRAVEL NOVEL ABOUT THE BLACK DEATH

TIMELINE BY MICHAEL CRICHTON (1999) 458 PAGES ★★★★☆ — NONSTOP ACTION IN THIS TIME TRAVEL THRILLER

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Mal Warwick

Mal Warwick

Author, book reviewer, serial entrepreneur, board member