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Customer Review

46 of 51 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, 3 Nov. 2006
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This review is from: Brethren: Brethren Trilogy Book 1 (Hardcover)
This is not a bad read and there is some interesting stuff about the Templars and the Hospitallers and their rivalries. I found the Mamluks / Saracens were quite sympatheitic. What let the book down for me was the cardboard cutout characterisation of the principals and the rather childish way they acted. Will Campbell, the main character, is first introduced to us as a boy and he never seems to grow up although he is moving in a grown-up and very dangerous world. His girlfriend Elwen is about the same. In their mid-twenties, almost middle-aged in the 13th century, they are mooning about like a pair of teenagers and yet we are expected to believe that affairs of state are entrusted to this pair. Prince Edward of England, one of the most powerful men in the world at that time, relies solely on one evil criminal to carry out his will. Oh come on. And his father Henry is portrayed as a virtual dolt when in fact he was a very astute and cunning monarch.

No this author can write flowingly but characterisation is not her strong point and neither is action. I found the battle scenes very sketchy. Overall very disappointed.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 6 Apr 2009 12:47:10 BDT
M. Fenwick says:
Absolutely spot on! The principal characters are written quite childishly, and yet Elwen is easily able to take the Book of the Grail from Pont d'Eveque with no mishap and without getting caught, BUT the seasoned saracen traveller, envoy of the Brethren and ex-soldier, Hasan, chooses to go up a dark alley on his way back to the Temple with the book, and is beaten up by a bunch of apprentices and dies.
Overall I'm finding the pace of the story quite slow; and at some points quite boring and I'm skipping paragraphs as a result. I don't agree that the writer is writing 'flowingly' and the jumps between the two stories are sometimes a bit clumsy. It's OK for a first novel, but it could have so much more.

Posted on 22 Jan 2012 11:43:39 GMT
Couldn't agree more with both of you.
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Reviewer

Roy Brookes
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Location: Hamburg, Germany

Top Reviewer Ranking: 500,139