Daughter of War by S.J.A. Turney
Daughter Of War (Knights Templar #1) is historical fiction set in 1198. It revolves around the mysterious Templar Knights. The book opens with a battle in the Aragon area between Spanish Lords and a raiding group of Moors. Arnau de Vallbona is among the Spaniards, fighting alongside his Lord. But Arnau is unsure of his future when Lord Berenguer de Santa Coloma is killed . Berenguer’s heir is his fifteen year old daughter; however, straight after her father’s funeral, the king’s representative orders her betrothal to the vile Ferrer della Cadeneta, a treacherous man who did nothing to save Berenguer when he had the opportunity.
But the fifteen year old Lady Titborge is no child, and she asks Arnau to help her escape. They seek refuge at a Templar monastery in Roureel, offering the Templars the lands and wealth of the Santa Coloma estates. But just how low will della Cadeneta stoop to get the fortune that Titborge can give him?
Religion was a strong theme in the medieval era, and most readers of history know of the Knights Templar. Less is written about the order in Spain. Turney has chosen to base his story around two, real life, Templar sisters. Woven throughout the story are strong Templar themes of religion. But we are also reminded that, in reality, the Templar rubrics would have been melded with secular habits to fit the needs of the monasteries and the demands on the knights.
The story follows Arnau’s narrative; there are plenty of fight scenes as Cadeneta is relentless in his attempts to get either Titborge or her estate titles. This will appeal to readers who like a story which doesn’t have a romantic sub-plot. Overall, an interesting insight into both brothers and sisters of the Knights Templar.
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An extraordinary story of the Knights Templar, seen from the bloody inside
Europe is aflame. On the Iberian Peninsula the wars of the Reconquista rage across Aragon and Castile. Once again, the Moors are gaining the upper hand. Christendom is divided.
Amidst the chaos comes a young knight: Arnau of Valbona. After his Lord is killed in an act of treachery, Arnau pledges to look after his daughter, whose life is now at risk. But in protecting her Arnau will face terrible challenges, and enter a world of Templars, steely knights and visceral combat he could never have imagined.
She in turn will find a new destiny with the Knights as a daughter of war… Can she survive? And can Arnau find his destiny?
Simon lives with his wife and children and a menagerie of animals in rural North Yorkshire, where he sits in an office, wired on coffee and digestive biscuits, and attempts to spin engrossing tales out of strands of imagination while his children drive toys across his desk and two dogs howl as they try to share a brain cell.
A born and bred Yorkshireman with a love of country, history and architecture, Simon spends most of his rare free time travelling around ancient sites, writing, researching the ancient world and reading voraciously.
Following an arcane and eclectic career path that wound through everything from sheep to Microsoft networks and from paint to car sales, Simon wrote Marius’ Mules and, with help and support, made a success of it. Now, with in excess of 20 novels under his belt, Simon writes full time and is represented by MMB Creative literary agents.
Simon writes Roman military novels in the form of the bestselling Marius’ Mules series based on Julius Caesar’s campaigns, Roman thrillers in the Praetorian series, set during the troubled reign of Commodus, medieval adventures in the Ottoman Cycle, following a young Greek thief around the 15th century world, and a series of Historical Fantasy novels with a Roman flavour, called the Tales of the Empire.
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