The Black Rood
by Stephen R. Lawhead
10 East 53rd Street
New York, NY 10022
©2000 437pp Hard Cover
Who likes historical fiction that focuses on fiction more than history? You do not! Then stop reading. For the rest of you, book II of the Celtic Crusades should make you want to storm castles, reconquer the Holy Land, and demand an explanation from a terrified Israeli museum curator who insists that he is not hiding holy relics. Stephen Lawhead’s The Black Rood is about a knight who does just that. This Crusader discovers that part of the true cross is somewhere in the Holy Land and it is up to him to kill people to get it and get revenge on other people for various other reasons. Sword swinging awesomeness is about to commence.
Historical fiction usually involves taking real people and events and adding fictional characters to serve as the reader’s eyes and ears during the adventure. In this book it is Duncan, Son of Murdo who the reader will be questing with.
This is the middle book in a trilogy so it is probably a good idea to read book one before you get this one. Are you done reading book one yet? Good. Read The Black Rood and learn random facts about the Crusades today! But leave the poor curators alone. They probably have not read any historical fiction themselves and will no doubt be upset if you start to hurt them for information that they cannot possibly know.