Forge, Dec 2003, 25.95, 432 pp.
Catherine LeVendeur's cousin Solomon is on his way to Almeria to pick up their share of the investment that the ship brings in. He stops at Toluse where he has many friends including Aaron who wants the leader to rescue his betrothed who was sold into sexual bondage after the Christians invaded Almeria. Solomon agrees to rescue the woman he knew as a baby but before he leaves someone killed a monk who gave bags of gold to ransom the girl, money that was meant to free Christian soldiers held by the Saracens.
When he finally leaves the city, he is in a caravan that includes his Sire Brother James, a Christian fanatic who hates all Jews. One the road, Samuel who came along for the adventure is also murdered. Brother James thinks the two deaths are connected. The murder of one of their mercenary knights affirms his belief. Nov he has to prove it.
Unlike the rest of the novels in this series, Catherine LeVendeur doesn't make an appearance and her husband Edgar is in one chapter. Readers get a chance to see how Solomon lives when he is away from his causes keeping his trading business alive. Rich in historical detail, readers will feel like they were transported back to 1148.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner