Review by The Mole
Modern day Iraq and we join John Hart as he is being blown up by a car bomb. I first met John Hart in The Templar Prophecy but now we jump forward in time. We hit the ground and start running from the off in this story - quite literally - when Nalan, John's female interpreter, helps him to his feet and they flee to a place of safety - well, relative safety anyway. While hiding John finds a clue that was missed in the Templar Prophecy - a clue to something new, the Copper Scroll. When they escape - as escape they must - John is on the Iranian's "most wanted" list and there is a bubbling lust between them - John seems very prone to this.
The book is split between 1198 - the time of John's ancestor, Johannes von Hartelius, who was first charged with protecting the lance - and modern times, while sharing the story of the Copper Scroll which was a treasure of great importance to the Templars.
Frequently these type of stories flit back and forth across the centuries leaving me, as a reader, frustrated at abandoning a story line in which I am heavily involved, or confused as to which era we are in or what was happening last time we were in this century, but in this book the flitting happens only a few times with the book half set in each century although cleverly balanced to not spoil the plot of the other time line.
Violence abounds in times and places renowned for such things although John has difficulty in seeing justice or normality in any of. He comes away - and we know he must - changed and very depressed. And the lust interest? It changes to more of a love interest but can he really hook up with another woman now? And can't he see that Amira (his reporter ex-girlfriend) is waiting for him? Is he stupid? Answers to all these questions and more are to be found in this, Mario Reading's most excellent and thrilling second Templar novel.
Publisher - Atlantic Books
Genre - Adult thriller