From New York Times bestselling author Bernard Cornwell, the sequel to The Archer's Tale—the spellbinding tale of a young man, a fearless archer, who sets out wanting to avenge his family's honor and winds up on a quest for the Holy Grail.
In 1347, a year of conflict and unrest, Thomas of Hookton returns to England to pursue the Holy Grail. Among the flames of the Hundred Years War, a sinister enemy awaits the fabled archer and mercenary soldier: a bloodthirsty Dominican Inquisitor who also seeks Christendom's most holy relic. But neither the horrors of the battlefield nor sadistic torture at the Inquisitor's hands can turn Thomas from his sworn mission. And his thirst for vengeance will never be quenched while the villainous black rider who destroyed everything he loved still lives.
"Cornwell writes the best battle scenes of any writer I've read past or present."—George R.R. Martin
The Hundred Years War is the bloody backdrop to this second volume of Cornwell's new series about the search for the Holy Grail (after The Archer's Tale). Like its predecessor, the novel follows Thomas of Hookton, an archer in the English army in the 14th century. Thomas is the bastard son of a recently murdered priest whose family claims it once possessed the Holy Grail. No one is certain the Holy Grail actually exists, but many believe it does, and kings are waging war and committing murder in the search for it. Thomas has a book of his father's, written in Latin and Hebrew, which might reveal clues to the Grail's location, if only he could make head or tails of it. But others are aware of the book's existence, and Thomas's motley enemies and rivals including Guy Vexille, the French cousin who murdered his father; Bernard de Taillebourg, a Dominican Inquisitor who loves his job; and Sir Geoffrey Carr, a treacherous English knight are all hot on his trail. The beleaguered young hero must also fight mercenaries, Scots and Frenchmen in gruesome, long-drawn-out battles. Cornwell is meticulous about historical facts and period detail, and his descriptions of butchery with arrow, mace and battleaxe are nothing if not convincing. As expected, the book culminates with battlefield slaughter on an epic scale. Cornwell fans will eat this up.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Would be five stars, without the typos
Great book with enticing story and characters, but if you are looking at a Bernard Cornwell book, you already know to expect that. On the other hand, this iBooks edition has an abnormally high amount of typos -- In some places, it was enough to be distracting. While still a buy I would recommend, it's a shame to be yanked out of such an otherwise engrossing experience by easily fixed typos.