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A heartstopping race to unlock the secrets of the Grail Bloodline.
Mia Montrose is a 21st century Australian woman with a Doctorate in Ancient Languages who has just scored the most promising job of her career.
Ashlee Granville is a 19th century clairvoyant forced to suppress her talents as she enters the marriage market of English upper-class society.
Lillet du Lac is a 13th century Priestess of an ancient order now protected by the Cathars, who are making their last stand against the Roman Catholic Franks at the giant hill fort of Montsègur.
Truth and deception, love and desire, the Cathars and the Church, the Templars and the secrets of ancient Egypt - all play their part in a grand adventure touched by the possibility of a genetic key to immortality-
Oh my goodness what a book! This has quite seriously been one of the best books I have read in a very long time. The characters are interesting and easy to relate to on many levels. Everything was described with excellent attention to detail, without making the majority of the book description. The writing style was light yet extremely informative, and ever so slightly complex. Even the bad guy is not everything you think. By the time I had read through Ashlee's 'lessons' I was well and truly hooked. In fact if I am really honest, the four page prologue had me gagging to get to the rest of the story.
The story is written as if a collection of journals was made into a book... essentially it is supposed to be a collection of journal entries but Harding has made it much easier to read by instead turning on the storytelling element. There is some jumping between characters and therefore timeframes, but as they all intertwine so effectively that really isn't too much of an issue. There was only one point where I was confused as to the character involved. Additionally, everything is written from the perspective of one of the female characters.
It has adventure, action, love, swordfights, the Holy Grail, ghosts, the supernatural, everything that could possibly make a good story has been packed into this book. And here I was thinking it was going to be Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code all over again! I have to admit, there are elements of it, and most definitely there are some things that I read and thought "hmm, I wonder", but the overall premise was really quite different.
I only had one issue with this book, and in some ways it really isn't an issue (just to be contrary). All of the characters regardless of which century they were from, spoke like they were from the 21st century most of the time. E.g. Lillet du Lac states "... the penny finally dropped". Interesting turn of phrase for a 13th century priestess! However, I have to say that in a lot of ways this alteration made the book easier to read... it just may have been a little better without statements like that which seem out-of-place.
Overall... I can't wait for the next one!!
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"You never stop feeling scared. But you have to remember what you're doing it for. We have to win this war."
It's 1944 and London is under attack. After her mother is killed by a bomb, 17-year old Violet is desperate to do her bit for the war effort. She leaps at the chance to join the Special Operations Executive and is give a new undercover identity: Celine. Dropped into France to help the Resistance, Celine finds ... more...
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"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."