In this ninth edition of the Hugh Corbett series by Paul Doherty, our eponymous hero encounters the Order of the Temple, the Templars, and their last Grand Master Jacques de Molay. As someone who has always been fascinated by the history of the Templars – their rise from obscurity, their development from a military order into a pan-European financial network, and their eventual demise at the hands of King Philip IV of France in the early 14th century – this novel was a treasure trove to behold.
As Doherty notes in his Author’s Note – and as he consistently does across the entire series – there is firm historical veracity underpinning the fictional narrative that Doherty creates, and this level of authenticity only adds to the engaging nature of this particular novel. The presence of Templars, intrigue, and murder is a heady mix, one which captures and holds the reader’s attention across the pages of the book.
A thoroughly enjoyable read, a wonderful mix of history and narrative, that reveals once again the status of Paul Doherty as a master of this particular literary genre.
Very highly recommended.