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on 5 November 2013
'The Templar Vault' is not a startlingly original work. Think 'Da Vinci Code' meets 'Raiders of the Lost Ark'. Our hero, Sparke, is a risk manager for a multi-national corporation. A workaholic, he is forced to take some leave (quite possibly the least credible bit of the whole story) and starts to investigate what happened to the Knights Templar. In the book, his 21st-century investigations alternate with an account of what was actually happening in the 14th century when the Templar's organisation was destroyed.

It's pacy and well-written and enormous fun. I found myself learning some stuff about the Templars, which was a bonus. I'm not sure how reliable it all was. A quick check in Wikipedia suggests that the annihilation of their organisation was not as complete as it suggests in book, but Scott Chapman is not the first person to mythologise their demise and make a good conspiracy thriller out of it.

Chapman does a good job of generating tension and excitement out of situations that are not intrinsically thrilling. The characters are well drawn and convincing, although there is a love interest which doesn't seem to go anywhere. That, combined with a tantalising closing line suggests that a sequel might be on its way. 'The Templar Vault' holds up well enough on its own anyway.

The first pages ('Introduction') are supposed to suggest that the book will be very exciting by putting the climax at the beginning. (The same words are used when you actually get the climax in its proper place at the end.) For me, it was such an irritating device that I nearly gave up. I'm glad I didn't, but you could sensibly skip the introduction and start at Chapter One. It will make it a better book.

Some people say reviewers should not comment on editing and formatting issues, but the way books look and read is important. 'The Templar Vault' shows a lack of editing which is, unfortunately, all too typical of self published work. The minor typos do not get in the way of enjoying the novel, but there's too many to pass without notice. Time and money spent on proper proofing would have been a sensible investment. The book was put out through PublishNation, who are responsible for formatting. Somebody should tell them that professionally published books don't usually leave a blank line between paragraphs.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 28 October 2014
The Templar Vault Scott Chapman Kindle Edition

I am a great fan of archaeological thrillers/adventures and found the storyline interesting and well thought out and the characters quite engaging... at least for the first three-quarters of the book. The story was well written and very readable but towards the end seemed to lose its way the end being something of an anti-climax leaving the reader wanting closure and wondering what happened next.

The Kindle edition could do with the attention of an editor as there numerous spelling and homophonic errors and a few formatting glitches which tend to be a distraction.

Never-the-less an enjoyable evenings reading, perhaps the sequel will answer the outstanding story issues.
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on 1 October 2015
I give this book 3.5 stars as it was a bit short and could have done with more
depth to the characters. I also felt there was too much background about Peter Sparke's
work and his boss before he actually got down to the nitty gritty of researching the Templars.

The story switches chapters between the modern world of Peter and the last months of
the Templar Knights retreating from the slaughter of their members and trying to make a
"last ditch stand" in Scotland. I found the Templar chapters more interesting, though my
opinion of them went downhill every time they murdered innocent people just to hide their
activities!

The book ended somewhat abruptly, I felt, in that you didn't find out about all that was hidden
in the vault of the title. I thought the author was leaving that for the next book.

Two things really niggled me, having previously spent 24 years living in the Highlands.
Peter was born and spent his childhood in Scotland, yet he needed reminding that Scotland
has lochs, not lakes. Also, he let his boss get away several times with referring to "Scotchmen"
and "wild Scotch". Scotch is a drink! It should be Scots or Scottish.

Apart from that, I enjoyed the book and have two other Templar books to read by this author,
which I will review in due course and perhaps Peter Sparke's character will be more filled out
in those.
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on 27 October 2013
An amazing journey. Wonderful story, journey of delights on every page. Time, history, geography,adventure and story all combined in a mix of action and intrigue. I would love to walk the Highlands following in the footsteps of the Templars. When is the next one....I can't wait. The Templar Vault
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on 21 March 2014
Surprised myself by enjoying it more than I thought I would. Had never heard of the author Scott Chapman and was expecting a very ordinary story, but how wrong I was. It was a different slant from the usual 'Templar' themed books and very enjoyable. Have to find other books by this author.
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on 16 November 2013
Fabulous book which I found difficult to put down. The author split the story between the past and present, slowly revealing more details and making you want to read the next page to learn more. I cannot wait for the next book of the series - highly recommended.
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on 17 November 2013
Enjoyed this book, not as heavy as a lot of the others available exploring this subject.
Liked the characters, still room to develop them further with the next instalment. So much scope to delve into.
Looking forward to the next book.
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on 14 November 2013
Really good story especially the way it had two stories in different time periods running SIDE by side to make everything more understan
dable deffiently worth a read
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on 2 February 2014
A very good account of the templars.I don,t like the ideas of transporting to the future and then returning to the past.It disrupts my thought pattern
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on 6 December 2013
Well thought out, cleverly executed, delightful story and food fir thought. Would recommend this book to anyone interested in Templar history.
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