1163 Jerusalem. As the book opens, John of Tatewic is accused of fighting on the side of the Saracens against his Christian brethren. Pardoned by King Amalric, he is forced into the priesthood while becoming an advisor to the king, However, this is no sinecure, and John finds himself at the centre of a maelstrom of deadly politics, where the throne is constantly under threat. While John seeks to protect himself and the king, his close friend Saladin finds himself heading to Egypt with a Saracen army. In time, both men will find that honour carries a price, and their friendship will be strained as power corrupts, and peace between Saracen and Frank becomes an elusive dream.
This is book two of the Saladin Trilogy. Saladin’s rise to power is well woven into the story, as well as the rivalry between the various factions in the Kingdom of Jerusalem. Well researched, the characters are all strong and believable, while the action sequences are exciting and believable. Although I had not read the first in the series, this did not detract from my enjoyment of this book. Fans of this genre will enjoy this excellent novel. Recommended.