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Vagabond (The Grail Quest, Book 2) by [Cornwell, Bernard]
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Vagabond (The Grail Quest, Book 2) Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 259 customer reviews
Book 2 of 4 in The Grail Quest (4 Book Series)
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Amazon.co.uk Review

Vagabond, the second entry in the "Grail Quest" sequence, has been eagerly anticipated by those who read the first book, and it doesn't disappoint. Thomas has managed to survive the battle of Crécy. Still nursing his wounds, he is dispatched by the king on a mission to look into the matter of his father's inheritance, which is obscurely connected to the Holy Grail. This most precious relic of the Christian faith is a much sought-after object, offering the power of total victory in war to its owner. But Thomas finds himself in the middle of a battle against an army invading the North of England, and other shadowy forces pursuing the grail are prepared to slaughter anyone who stands in their way. In the ruins of his birthplace, Thomas discovers more about his father, and a dangerous voyage to France brings him up against his cousin and arch-enemy, Count of Astarc Guy Vexville. The stage is set for a merciless showdown.

Thomas is a protagonist drawn quite as pithily as his much-loved predecessor, and the sheer verve of Cornwell's storytelling here is irresistible. We are plunged into a distant age: bloody, colourful and dangerous. Roll on, volume three! --Barry Forshaw

Amazon Review

Vagabond, the second entry in the "Grail Quest" sequence, has been eagerly anticipated by those who read the first book, and it doesn't disappoint. Thomas has managed to survive the battle of Crécy. Still nursing his wounds, he is dispatched by the king on a mission to look into the matter of his father's inheritance, which is obscurely connected to the Holy Grail. This most precious relic of the Christian faith is a much sought-after object, offering the power of total victory in war to its owner. But Thomas finds himself in the middle of a battle against an army invading the North of England, and other shadowy forces pursuing the grail are prepared to slaughter anyone who stands in their way. In the ruins of his birthplace, Thomas discovers more about his father, and a dangerous voyage to France brings him up against his cousin and arch-enemy, Count of Astarc Guy Vexville. The stage is set for a merciless showdown.

Thomas is a protagonist drawn quite as pithily as his much-loved predecessor, and the sheer verve of Cornwell's storytelling here is irresistible. We are plunged into a distant age: bloody, colourful and dangerous. Roll on, volume three! --Barry Forshaw


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1387 KB
  • Print Length: 513 pages
  • Publisher: Harper (24 July 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002RI9OR8
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars 259 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #6,914 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on 11 Nov. 2002
Format: Hardcover
I bought this book as soon as it came out and had been hoping for that to happen for a long time now.
Harlequin was a great book on itself, and I was hoping Vagabond would equal it. It did much better that I had expected!
It throws you into the story straight away, deep in North England where Thomas, father Hobbe and Eleanor search for a monk who might supply them with vital information for their quest for the Grail. Thomas takes place in the battle of Neville's Cross, one of the sublimely described battles in the book. After this, the story goes very fast and after quite a big shock, Thomas meets new friends and enemies alike.
At first, they all seemed quite one dimensional, but they really surprised me. All of the events are quite plausible and Cornwell again mixes history with fiction to great effect.
The ending, like in Harlequin, is good enough, considering it's a trilogy, but, even more than its predecessor did, leaves you wanting for more.
I advice this book to anyone who enjoys historical novels; it is one of the most fascinating I have read thus far.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I have no qualms in giving an honest review which includes the good the bad and the ugly where appropriate. This is one of four linked books in the series. Set in the 1400's. The story as a whole starts with a young archer, follows him through generations and the fantastic might of the archer to the English army and the way such a simple weapon dominated war for 200 years. Battle descriptions, locations, the actual leaders involved. Using fictionalised storylines, incorporates real battles, tactics, locations. A real good read and starting with the first of the set continues with the same characters. A great way to learn history as day, date, people involved and place. A great read, start and read the books in order. You will read them again in a few years time and enjoy them just as much
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A review of Harlequin and Vagabond

Ok look Bernard can write a mean plot, there's no let up, the bad guys are numerous and as mean as they get. The hero is not heroic but he is very resilient and sometimes foolish, always brave and has generally good intentions, but a saint he certainly isn't. Similar to Uhtred of the Last Kingdom. And there you have the only flaw with these books, the formulae is well proven but re-worked for different scenarios. You know the main character is going to have to endure a relentless series of misfortunes, betrayal, torture, battles, love and lust, revenge and glory. You know the evil characters are so vile it makes you want to shout with joy when they eventually get what's coming to them. Mr Cornwell is a fantastic story teller, of that there is no doubt. I can't give it 5 stars as I didn't buy the last book in this series. Why? I am 98% sure I know what happens but I can't endure the roller coaster ride to get there. At least not now, I need a break, something a but quieter and perhaps more unpredictable but no doubt I will go back for more later.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
There are very few writers out there who can equal Bernard Cornwell when it comes to historical novels, never mind surpass him. The Grail Quest series of novels cement that reputation and Vagabond keeps you wanting more though I prefer the Last Kingdom series. The only weaknesses are the bad guys who appear a little two dimensional, and a little like the villains from a batman comic in comparison to the heroes, who feel more rounded and to a degree more believable. That being said, I still cant put them down, so I have to recommend Vagabond.
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By Valerie Gail bartlett TOP 500 REVIEWER on 30 Oct. 2015
Format: Paperback
Vagabond is the second novel in The Grail Quest series by Bernard Cornwell. Set during the first stage of the Hundred Years War, it follows Thomas of Hookton's quest to find the Holy Grail, a relic which will grant decisive victory to the possessor. In 1347, a year of conflict and unrest, Thomas of Hookton returns to England to pursue the Holy Grail. Among the flames of the Hundred Years War, a sinister enemy awaits the fabled archer and mercenary soldier: a bloodthirsty Dominican Inquisitor who also seeks Christendom's most holy relic. But neither the horrors of the battlefield nor sadistic torture at the Inquisitor's hands can turn Thomas from his sworn mission. And his thirst for vengeance will never be quenched while the villainous black rider who destroyed everything he loved still lives.
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Format: Hardcover
Besides the Sharpe novels, which I have yet to get into, I have read most of Mr Cornwell's historical fiction novels, and having enjoyed "an Archer's Tale", I was looking forward to the latest addition to the Grail Quest Trilogy.
I read it in a day, all the way through (it really is not very long, the large text in a hardback copy is very deceiving) and although worth the money, this book is very much the second in a planned trilogy, with most elements left open to be wound up in the next and final novel. The characters are interesting and their stories are expertly woven into the social and historical context, making seemingly insignificant chapters in history far more important than what we learned in GCSE History. Yet, dare I say it, the plot is rather uninspired and save for the relevancy to real-life events, disappointly wooden. We can guess that the English are always champion underdogs, and that Thomas and his evil nemesis will fight it out until the very end. The quest for the grail even retains elements of Spielberg's "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" - an ensemble of characters looking for a mythical and all powerful carpenter's cup. But by God Mr Cornwell's writing still flows, and he still makes you wonder what is was really like when life was so much more violent, but at the same time so much bloody simpler. I look forward to the next instalment. Go Thomas of Hookton!
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