My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I enjoyed this book, but not quite as well as The Hangman's Daughter. The plot was a little convoluted. A priest is murdered and it appears that he has unearthed clues to a fantastic Templar fortune. Jakob Kuisel explores the crypt in which the priest was killed and someone drugs him. That begins the tale of 4 separate groups who are trying to follow the clues and find the treasure.
Simon teams up with the sister of the priest which evokes Magdelena's ire. She goes to Ausburg to get some herbs and is drawn into the mystery when she is kidnapped by a crazed monk. Simon and his beautiful partner follow clues which take them to monasteries, libraries and even a tree. As they travel, it is clear that two groups of people are following them. In the meantime, Clerk Johan Lechner has sent Jakob, with a group of men, to find the hideout of a group of robbers who have been plundering merchant's wagons and bringing trade to a stand still. From there the plot weaves in and out until Jakob, Simon and Magdelena all arrive at the same point.
I have ancestors who came from Bavaria and I read this book with great interest. The naming patterns in the family were the same as many of my ancestors as well as the trades. In this book I ran into an ancestor with the unusual surname of my grandmother, but, unfortunately, Jakob only mentions that he has been hung as a highway. I only hope that he was the black sheep of the family!
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