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Trail of Fate: The Youngest Templar Book 2    by Michael P. Spradlin order for
Trail of Fate
by Michael P. Spradlin
Order:  USA  Can
Putnam, 2009 (2009)
Hardcover, CD
* * *   Reviewed by Ricki Marking-Camuto

The action in Trail of Fate picks up right where Michel P. Spradlin's first Youngest Templar book, Keeper of the Grail, ended. Having survived the shipwreck, Tristan finds himself washed up on the shores of France with the Grail safe within his pack.

Seperated from his friends, he is lost until a group of Cathars find him. At first, Celia and her band bristle at the idea of helping a Templar, but when they realize he is not out to hurt them, they take him in. The band is soon set upon by Tristan's friends, Robard and Maryam, but Tristan convinces everyone not to fight.

Reunited, Tristan and his companions break from the Cathars and continue on their quest to return to England. However, when the Cathars' enemy asks where Celia went, Tristan knows he must deviate from his task to help her. Unfortunately, this side quest leads him straight to Sir Hugh, who is more determined than ever to capture Tristan and the treasure he carries.

Most Templar fiction makes little reference to the Cathars, so this was a nice twist as well as educational. Spradlin does an excellent job of taking the Holy Wars and putting them in terms that younger readers will understand and even enjoy. Having young people many who are recognizable from other legends as the main characters helps in this task as well.

If you are looking for an easy-reading, fast-paced Templar adventure, The Youngest Templar series cannot be beaten. Trail of Fate is an excellent continuation of Keeper of the Grail, and takes the story in unexpected directions.

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