Eight hundred years earlier, on the eve of a brutal crusade to stamp out heresy that will rip apart southern France, Alais is given a ring and a mysterious book for safekeeping by her father as he leaves to fight the crusaders. The book, he says, contains the secret of the true Grail, and the ring, inscribed with a labyrinth, will identify a guardian of the Grail. As crusading armies led by Church potentates and nobles of northern France gather outside the city walls of Carcassonne, it will take great sacrifice to keep the secret of the labyrinth safe.
In the present, another woman sees the find as a means to the political power she craves; while a man who has great power will kill to destroy all traces of the discovery and everyone who stands in his way.
©2006 Mosse Associates, Ltd.; (P)2006 Penguin Audio, a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc., and Books on Tape
Some parts just seemed to go on forever with no real point but it WAS interesting to discover the parallel characters between the times.
Yes, she is completely believable and her french is quite fine.
This book was very unbalanced. At times I loved it at other times...not so good. I preferred the parts of the story that took place in the 1200's: Aliese's family, the crusades, the grail story. When the book flip-flopped into the present it wasn't done very well. I think the author could have handled this in a better way. She definately could have made it much briefer.
In the present the author spent a lot of time with details and descriptions of France I really didn't care about. I felt it took away from the story. Plus the french dialogue was very distracting. I found myself zoning out a lot during these parts.
But when we went back to the past the author had my full attention again. She should have stayed there more. There were stories from the past that I would have liked to have seen in the past that were explained in a giant info dump by one of the present characters towards the end of the story. I felt like the author realized she was going on too long and took the easy way out. She shouldn't have skimped on this part.
Narrator did an excellent job as she always does. If you like historical fiction and don't mind a meandering story the good parts of this story are worth your while. Otherwise keep looking for another title.
Overall, there is some interesting material here. I found myself interested in and researching the central locations in the story.
However, the pace is slower than I like, the number of characters with similar names confused me more than once, and it didn't consistently keep my attention.
I mildly enjoyed it, but I won't go out of my way to seek out the author again. It's too bad because the plot and setting had a lot of potential.
There are no listener reviews for this title yet.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.