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Inquisition Paperback – 29 November 2011
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- Publisher : Sphere; 1st edition (29 November 2011)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 496 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0751545392
- ISBN-13 : 978-0751545395
- Dimensions : 12.8 x 3.2 x 19.7 cm
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But even beyond that, the story itself was absolutely brilliant. What a great concept - the mysterious death of a man who appears to have been a Templar, at the time when being a Knight Templar was in itself a dangerous occupation. The novel is set in Bologna, already a city in a region torn by long-standing Ghibelline and Guelph allegiances. More than that, the Church under Pope Clement V and King Philip IV of France are setting up actions against the Templars, and attempting to make those stick across the whole of Europe. The Inquisition in Bologna is keen to do their duty by the Church, particularly under the auspices of the really nasty Uberto. So when Mondino, an anatomist who really just wants to be left alone to work on his medical theories (also a touchy point with the Church at this time), finds himself caught up in conspiracy theories and unsolved mysteries which also seem to involve occult powers, it really becomes a race against so many factors to work out what's going on and why.
The characters are really well-developed in this book - they all stand out from the page, and are well characterised. The story races along - I found myself turning the last 50 pages at the rate of knots, absolutely frantic to find out what was going to happen next. The setting is very evocatively drawn for the reader - medieval Bologna, the Church, the life led by the people in these places at these times - it all rang true, and worked really well - there was nothing that jarred my historical senses at all. Clearly the author really knows his stuff. I haven't found any others of his books in English - hopefully these will appear on the market soon - I'd love to read some more of his works. Highly recommended for any reader who loves medieval mysteries.
Set in Bologna in the 14th Century and base around themes of alchemy and science, Colitto has linked different concerns adeptly. The central character Mondino is a physician who is determined to progress scientific knowledge, even if that brings him into conflict with the Catholic Church and the Inquisition in particular. The trial of the Templar knights sits in the background whilst the central narrative is about the gruesome deaths of two templars.
It's not a hard read, it's not highbrow but it is good fun.
Still a good 'holiday read' as the Middle Ages atmosphere is well portrayed.