Bernard Cornwell has a new series entitled "The Grail Quest" and "Harlequin" is the first book in the series. Thomas of Hookton is the son of a village priest and his housekeeper. The book opens with an attack on the English village by pirates from France. Thomas is the only survivor and vows to avenge his parents' death and recover the religious relic stolen from the church. He joins the army of King Edward III as an archer and goes to France to fight in what is to become the Hundred Years War. As usual with Cornwell's fiction the action is plentiful and the protagonist has one adventure, or misadventure, after another. He makes enemies and friends. His enemies try to kill him and his friends try to save his life. Cornwell's depiction of life in the fourteenth century is bleak, especially if you are fighting a war on foreign soil. The pages turn fast and at the end the reader is panting for the next instalment.
This report prepared by Penny