Few writers have a publication history as prolific or as complex as that of Edith Pargeter. Pargeter is best known for the Brother Cadfael series of mysteries, in which the detective is a monk in the Middle Ages. She wrote twenty-one of these books, using the pseudonym Ellis Peters, which she also used for twenty-one more books which do not feature Cadfael. She also wrote several short stories.
A Bloody Field by Shrewsbury, which was published in 1972, was one of the thirty-one books for which Pargeter used her own name, though later editions mention on the cover that Pargeter also writes as Ellis Peters. In fact, Pargeter used various pseudonyms throughout her life. In the 1930s and 1940s, she experimented with male pseudonyms for her mystery novels. She published Day Star as Peter Benedict in 1937 and four novels as Jolyon Carr, beginning with Murder in the Dispensary, in 1938. She also wrote under the name John Redfern. Pargeter was born and died in Shropshire, near Shrewsbury, and many of her books, including the Cadfael series, are set there. A Bloody Field by Shrewsbury deals with the events leading up to the Battle of Shrewsbury in 1403, which are also the subject of Shakespeare's Henry IV, Part 1.