Scotland. 1307. Thirteen-year-old Tormod MacLeod is different. He knows things before they happen. Even his own brother treats him differently, and all Tormod can do is bide his time until he's old enough to leave the village and make something of himself. Read more...
Scotland. 1307. Thirteen-year-old Tormod MacLeod is different. He knows things before they happen. Even his own brother treats him differently, and all Tormod can do is bide his time until he's old enough to leave the village and make something of himself. His chance comes sooner than expected when a Templar knight asks him to deliver a secret message. But Tormod's efforts end up endangering both their lives. What follows is a desperate journey to escape the army of King Philippe le Bel of France. If he is to survive, Tormod must learn to harness the powers within.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page 49.
- Review Date: 2009-03-09
- Reviewer: Staff
In Black's impressive debut, first in the Book of Tormod series, the Knights Templar weren't merely a crusading religious order—they possessed powers ranging from precognition to mind control and used them to fight the excesses of King Philippe of France. Tormod, a Scottish teenager, occasionally has prophetic visions, but has learned to keep this information to himself. After a chance encounter with the knight Alexander, he is drawn into an adventure that eventually takes him to mainland Europe. Along the way, Alexander trains Tormod in combat, his special powers and the history of the Knights Templar. The action is frequent and often brutal, but never feels out of place. Black gives Tormod a strong and clearly Scottish voice that readers will quickly comprehend. There are moments that seem dubious, but they never impede the fast-paced plot. A captivating mix of history, fantasy and religion, the novel is a solid adventure that makes good use of its historical setting. Ages 12–up. (Feb.)