Harlequin (Bernard Cornwell) & Vagabond (Bernard Cornwell)

Posted on Wed 04 October 2006 in Rooties Recent Reading

I enjoyed Uhtred in Bernard Cornwell's Saxon Series, go forwards several hundred years and join Thomas of Hookton on his equally enjoyable adventures.

Thomas is an English Archer who's father was a village priest. The story begins with the death of his father and the destruction of Thomas's home village by European raiders and follows his journey first for vengeance but equally to discover the truth about his family's origins. He discovers his family was said to be the keepers of the Holy Grail and circumstances conspire to make him search for it. There are plenty of twists along the way, a dash or two of romance, death (well, he is an archer in the middle of a war) and valour.

Uhtred from the Saxon series was a sometimes like-able, oftentimes detestably violent person. Thomas is much more like able as a character. Perhaps even more pleasant that Richard Sharpe in the Sharpe series. He is no less realistic though and I can't help but look out for the third book in the series "HereticHeretic" - Does Thomas find his Grail?

As I read more of Bernard Cornwell's books I am impressed by the historical settings. The end of each book puts in place some divisions between fact and fiction making reading his books a little bit of education as well as a pleasure.