If a fourteen-year-old had degrees in Theology and Medieval History, what would he write about? Perhaps the Knights Templar, a religious order of warriors that were said to be so brave and righteous they could battle ten-to-one odds and win. It's not written by a teenager, but Solomon's Thieves (by Mechner and Pham) had enough escapes and sword duels (especially the one at the end that travels up into the rafters) to keep the teen boy in me quite happy. Meanwhile, this story of three rough and tumble knights also explores how the politics of the Church went about finding scapegoats and the hideous methods they used to exact confessions. One of these knights gets caught up in the Church's plans, but he escapes from his torturers and hooks up with a pair who have plans to stick it back to the Church but good. This one's out in May, but follow ups promise to detail a Medieval heist worthy of Ocean's Eleven.
On a lighter note, take Matt Blurdy, the star of The Helm (by Hardison and Sears): a pudgy loser, thirty-years-old, working in a video store and living with his Mom. Things might be looking up though, when Matt finds an ancient helm in an antique store, which tells him flat out that he's got a heroic destiny waiting for him and all he needs is to put the helm on and claim it. Except when he does, the helm apologizes. Sorry, big mistake, Matt definitely does not have a heroic destiny waiting for him. But this is Matt's chance, see, so he keeps the helm and starts a hardcore regimen designed to make him a hero. Only problem is, he's got to beat the murder rap and shed a few pounds before the dark forces looking for that helm catch up with him. Both hilarious and exciting, this is for all the comic book and fantasy geeks out there and for anyone who ever loved them or hated them.
Fantasy to make you laugh or cry.
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