Why Did I Read This Book?
Templar by Jordan Mechner appealed to me mainly because it made me nostalgic for my nerdy past. Seriously, the Knights Templar are hella interesting — even without all the conspiracy stuff and I say that as someone who was able to fill a 15 page paper on the subject of the Templars in college. #humblebrag So, yeah, I absolutely knew I needed to read this book and although it’s fiction, it was well researched and really breathed life into a fascinating bit of history. I mean, come on you guys. There’s this big huge order of knights and they are powerful and awesome, until one day King Phillip is like, oh fuck this, they have wayyyy too much power, so he puts them on trial and basically has the Templars hunted down and jailed and many executed on trumped up crimes. As a modern day reader, I am all about historical conspiracy books, even when they are clearly based in fiction. So, Templar was a graphic novel (yay pictures) that gave me a historical setting and freakin’ a HEIST. YES.
What’s The Story Here?
Basically, Templar opens with the Knights Templar being arrested. Jacques Molay is put on trial and instead of standing strong, he succombs to torture. The story then shifts over to the lower knights of the order, ordinary men who are not in the upper echelon. These men have been hiding out and sort of disguise themselves back into society. A few live as thieves. Main character Martin of Troyes tries to live on the straight and narrow and not be a thief. He took his vows to the order very seriously. Yet, when old Templar friends come calling and tell him that there’s treasure from previous missions hidden in Paris, he agrees the help find and get the treasure out of the city. From there, Mechner’s Templar turns into a heist story intertwined with a love story and you guys it is fricken AWESOME. Like, we are talking full on badass awesome complete with a MASTER PLAN. As a dork, I loved it.
How Is Templar In Comparison To Other Conspiracy Theory Books?
I think that Templar by Jordan Mechner really holds it’s own in a sea of holy grail, medieval conspiracy books. I definitely liked the main characters of this graphic novel much more than Robert Langdon of the Da Vinci Code books. Granted, this one is different in that instead of being set in present day with characters trying to unravel a mystery from the past, it is set in the medieval era and the characters are already members of the secret organization. Also, there’s no illuminati. I loved how the entire heist went down and just how many elements there were to successfully pulling it off. I also loved how Templar touched on the whole rumors of their being a big templar treasure that King Phillip wanted for himself. Pretty much this book is AWESOME in regards to that. So yeah, it does very well compared to other conspiracy theory books and I think that aside from the great characterization, it’s use of the graphic novel medium to tell the story really assists with that.
What About The Art?
Okay, do you guys remember reading Prince Valiant in the Sunday morning comics? The art in Templar really reminded me of the art from Prince Valiant and that’s a great thing, in my book. The pictures are not weird looking or hard to decipher. Although, I do have to say that if you decide to read Templar get your hands on a hard copy. I read it on my mac and honestly when I tried to zoom in to see the words it got all blurry and such. I would imagine that the print version is actually quite easy to read. SO READ IT IN PRINT. Also, the illustrators are LeUyen Pham and Alex Puvilland and they do a total badass job of bringing the story of Templar to life.
Sum It Up With A GIF:
Disguises and heists, OBVIOUSLY I need a GIF from one of the most awesome modern day heist movies.
Disclosure: Received for review via Netgalley