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THE YOUNGEST TEMPLAR by Michael P. Spradlin

THE YOUNGEST TEMPLAR

Trail of Fate

By Michael P. Spradlin

Age Range: 9 - 11

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-399-24764-4
Publisher: Putnam

A shipwreck while escaping with the Holy Grail strands Templar squire Tristan in southern France while cartoon villain Sir Hugh remains on his trail. Along with friends Robard Hode and the highly exoticized Saracen maid Maryam, Tristan must return to England posthaste. But what’s flight from the forces of evil when there’s a blue-eyed girl to help? Tristan is awed by damsel-in-distress Celia, a heretic Cathar (presented here as a kind of medieval Unitarian, instead of more accurately as one of a sect of vegetarian celibate ditheists that inspired the first medieval inquisition). Surely it’s the Grail that wants Tristan to help Celia, and not any more base instinct! Good thing Tristan is a military genius, because he successfully defends Celia’s mountain fortress from a combined attack by papal and Templar forces. Now if only he can get the Grail back to England before—darn it, there’s the cliffhanger ending. Lightweight adventure, about as historically accurate as The Da Vinci Code, but a relatively harmless time-filler for series-obsessed fantasy fans. (Fantasy. 9-11)