Templar: a graphic novel about the dissolution of that famous order and the struggle for the legendary treasure that they left behind. A couple of weeks ago, I read the first book in this series and I enjoyed it more than this complete volume. It was the ending that diminished my enjoyment of it the most, which I won’t get into because I don’t want to ruin it for anyone, but that was really my issue. Mechner ties up the major plot points, but I didn’t like how he did it- at all.
Like the other book, this contains adventure, daring rescues, and amusing “heist movie” type moments. We’ve also got a strong female lead in Madame De Chalancon (love interest) who is actually very hard core for a 12th century woman. She’s sneaking out at night and running around with the guys, stealing horses, manipulating the powerful men around her, kissing people- I mean, that kind of stuff could have gotten her burned as a heretic or witch back then. So, that was good and the other characterizations are solid. The illustrations aren’t gorgeous (compared to Monstress #1 or Saga, Volume 1) but those are considered adult graphic novels while this one is marketed for the teen set.
Which reminds me, there’s a whole scene that takes place in a Turkish steam bath that some parents may find objectionable. I’d let my kid read it, but she’s a girl and has the parts that are revealed through the steam and also, I’m a librarian, and I don’t censor stuff. But yeah, there’s some (very tasteful) nude females, torture scenes, hand to hand combat, men being burned at the stake, arrows through limbs… I honestly think that this may have been better as a mature book than a watered down PG13, but it is what it is.
Still, it is a fun story and semi-educational in that some of the people featured in this book were actual historical figures. Mechner includes his sources in the back and also some recommended reading. I think I’m going to look into Foucault’s Pendulum, which I’ve never read, but Mechner gives high praise.
Thanks for reading!