Detective, monk, father, herbalist, Crusader, sailor, Celt, friend-Ellis Peters bestows all these attributes on her twelfth-century Benedictine monk-detective Brother Cadfael. As a detective Cadfael uses his analytic mind to solve the crimes and administer justice-as he sees it. As a man of God, he also dispenses mercy along with his cordials. Just how the soldier-turned-monk solves the mysteries through his various ministries challenges mystery-lovers to seek for reasons-and the answers in the essays are as simple and sweet as Cadfael's cordials and sometimes just as surprising. Topics range from the equivocal moral world view Peters creates in the twenty-one Chronicles-twenty novels and one book of short stories-to the testing of Cadfael's religious vocation. A similar dilemma occurs when Cadfael's Welsh heritage is pitted against the English and Norman political and legal influence. Why, other essays ask, is a cloistered monk solving murders? How can an author combine a valid detective and an effective healer? What herbs did Cadfael use and why and on whom? What experiences does he bring to his monastery? And why did Peters have him leave his monastic shelter? A panacea for mystery migraines? Brother Cadfael's cordials.