The Dark Monk : Hangman's Daughter

  • by Oliver Pötzsch
  • Narrated by Grover Gardner
  • Series: Hangman's Daughter
  • 14 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

It is 1648, a small village in the Alps: In the thick of a blizzard,a town priest discovers he’s been poisoned. As numbness creeps up his body, he summons the last of his strength and scratches a sign in the frost that will lead the town hangman, his daughter, and the town physician in pursuit of a treasure of the Knights Templar. But the priest’s murderer is already on their trail, and he’s not the only one after the legendary fortune: a dark monk is not far behind,and a band of thieves is roving the countryside, attacking solitary travelers and spreading panic. The race is on, and the stakes are high.
Delivering on the promise of his first book, Oliver Pötzsch takes readers on a whirlwind tour through the occult hiding places of Bavaria’s ancient monasteries, bringing to life the compassionate hangman - who’s destined to join the ranks of literature’s most beloved characters.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

The Real Discovery of Penicillin!

I liked "The Dark Monk" better than its predecessor, "The Hangman's Daughter." It tells a better story, and it has fewer horrific descriptions of Midieval torture. (Yes, I know that this story technically takes place during the Reformation, but the people and villages depicted here still seem locked deep in the Middle Ages.) I also liked it better because of Pötzsch's increased inclusion of herbology in this story. Here, Pötzsch speculates about the original discovery of Penicillin, attributing it to one of his characters. Such speculation makes some sense: Practicing herbalists may, indeed, have quietly discovered the antibiotic properties of certain molds prior to Alexander Flemming's official discovery of Penicillium rubens in 1928. With "The Hangman's Daughter," Pötzsch built a tale around one of his real 17th-century forebears: a veritable village executioner. Whodathunk that anyone could make a hero out of someone who tortures and murders for a living? I, personally, find this character difficult to believe -- an executioner with a gentle heart and the gift of healing? However, if you can swallow that premise, then you might like "The Dark Monk," in which the executioner, his daughter, and her lover solve another mystery. And what a mystery they solve: the location and nature of the lost Templar treasure! The narrator, Grover Gardner, also does a better job with this audiobook than he did with "The Hangman's Daughter," using a wider variety of voices to distinguish the characters. He doesn't have very good accents in his repertory, but he makes attempts, as necessary. I hesitate to say this -- because "The Hangman's Daughter" contains a lot of harrowing scenes of cruelty -- but you will probably enjoy "The Dark Monk" better if you have listened to "The Hangman's Daughter" first. You stand forewarned.
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- Snoodely

The Swedes

4.0
It is never a good sign when the sequel in a series can only muster a 4.0 rating, as this book has at the time of this review. Only the people who really liked the first book are going to go on and get the second book, so a low rating is not a good sign. It is a better rating than the first book which is a 3.8 right now.

Mystery/Thriller/Historical
This is not a bad book. I like the characters, they are not totally bad or totally great. There are strong women in the story and I like the Hangman. It is a stand alone novel, the first book is better, but you don't have to have read it to understand this book. This book just did not grab my impatient interest. Book one started with a execution, this book starts with a monk eating poisoned donuts. The writing is good, in that I felt like I was in Bavaria in the 1600's. The Historical part is good, I learned some new things and was reminded that the Swedes as well as most countries where invading Barbarians at one time. The weakness is the Mystery and the Thriller parts. The mystery was not mysterious enough to keep my interest and the story wasn't thrilling.

Grover Gardener is one of those narrators who brings class to any story he reads.
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- Jim "The Impatient" "My taste differs from kid books to gory horror books."

Book Details

  • Release Date: 06-12-2012
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio