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The Fifth Knight [Kindle Edition]

E.M. Powell
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (263 customer reviews)

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Book Description

To escape a lifetime of poverty, mercenary Sir Benedict Palmer agrees to one final, lucrative job: help King Henry II’s knights seize the traitor Archbishop Thomas Becket at Canterbury Cathedral. But what begins as a clandestine arrest ends in cold-blooded murder. And when Fitzurse, the knights’ ringleader, kidnaps Theodosia, a beautiful young nun who witnessed the crime, Palmer can sit silently by no longer. For not only is Theodosia’s virtue at stake, so too is the secret she unknowingly carries—a secret he knows Fitzurse will torture out of her. Now Palmer and Theodosia are on the run, strangers from different worlds forced to rely only on each other as they race to uncover the hidden motive behind Becket’s grisly murder—and the shocking truth that could destroy a kingdom.

Episode List
This book was initially released in episodes as a Kindle Serial. All episodes are now available for immediate download as a complete book. Learn more about Kindle Serials

Editorial Reviews


"Powell does a masterful job. Highly recommended." Historical Novels Review

About the Author

E.M. Powell was born and raised in Ireland, a descendant of Irish revolutionary Michael Collins. At University College, Cork, she discovered a love of Anglo-Saxon and medieval English during her study of literature and geography. she is a member of Romance Writers of America, the Historical Novel Society, and International Thriller Writers, and has been accepted onto the Romantic Novelists’ Association (UK) 2012 New Writers Scheme. A reviewer for the Historical Novel Society, she lives today in Manchester, England, with her husband and daughter.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
50 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Fifth Knight Changes Everything November 17, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
This book is a fast paced story that provides a new twist on the story of Thomas Becket's murder. Adding the fifth knight changes everything you have heard about the event and opens up a gripping alternative account of it.

I was captivated by Sir Benedict, the knight the title refers to and his feisty companion, Sister Theodosia. I am fascinated by the world these characters live in. I can barely imagine what it would be like to be an anchoress and know that you will never leave the cell in which you live for the rest of your life or to be a knight and face constant hardship and battles. But I didn't have to strain my imagination as the author paints a vivid picture of what these characters' lives are like - I was enthralled by it.

I wholeheartedly recommend this novel and I found that National Short Story week was just the excuse I needed to treat myself to it.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Medieval Roller Coaster Ride January 29, 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
"The Fifth Knight", by E.M. Powell, attracted me because I read many novels about Thomas Becket (my patron saint), The Templars and Arthurian Legend. What I took away from this work cannot be explained, except like this: I am richer in spirit and historic perspective because of it.

This novel is like a tapestry of the 12th Century, written with great detail, honesty with an eye to adventure and holiness. "The Fifth Knight" deals with Benedict Palmer, a knight, who was part of the murderous team assigned to assassinate The Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Becket. But, Benedict soon discovers guilt and true love from an unexpected hostage. The hostage is a nun, who learns the secret which justifies the actions, and, along with Benedict, begin the journey of a lifetime.

The author is no stranger to plot and character development. However, I was sad, at times, because the antagonist kills many beloved and kind characters who were my favorites. Like the authors of VicLit serials, the novel was released in parts, exclusively on Kindle. So, like Dickens or Collins, this author had to pace her plot, while it left us starved for the next one (and that, to me, was a good experience!) But, also like the serial writers of old, the plot, at times, slows down, at times. However, like a slow-moving carousel, who cares? The author always provides us shining, colored lights of authenticity and realism, and we are swept along with her prose, fascinated and enlightened.

The final part reads like a swashbuckling Scott novel. Its pace is cinematic, climatic, dynamic, but leads us to a final resolution: no, I will not reveal one detail.

If you like Arthurian adventure, scented with the realistic allure of the 12th Century, what keeps you from getting this novel? Billy Joel wrote: "Vienna waits for you." You will understand, after you read it, why I end with the phrase: "Paradise waits for you."
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oh cruel world! November 27, 2012
By Erin
Format:Kindle Edition
The language grips you and draws you into a reality so different, cold and cruel, that you want to escape. But that's not so easy as the plot, unrelenting, takes you from a battle at sea through cobbled streets to the cathedral where the gruesome murder takes place. You plan your escape at the end of the next chapter but, too late, the characters like a shroud have wrapped themselves around you and refuse to let go. You need to know what happens to Theodosia, are we seeing the true Palmer, where is this God forsaken journey going to end??
The best place to read this is in a warm bed and I can't wait for the next chapter........
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A New Historical Fiction Star January 2, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I highly recommend this book. I purchased The Fifth Knight to check out the Kindle serials. I've received 4 episodes so far, which equals about 280 pages for $1.99. (Two more episodes to be delivered to my Kindle.) I didn't expect too much. Yet, the writing is excellent; the story is gripping; the characters are unforgettable. The two main characters, Theodosia and Sir Palmer, have an irresistible chemistry because of both their flaws and their virtues. Powell has obviously done her research into the period. I felt plunged into the rustic and rough world of the 12th century. I learned something new with Powell's detail around the history of Thomas Becket's murder. I didn't realize he was murdered on December 29th, 1170, which is exactly the day I started reading The Fifth Knight. It's also my husband's birthday but, don't worry, he's in no danger of having his brains smashed against the altar as poor Becket had. THE FIFTH KNIGHT is storytelling as good as Ken Follett's Pillars of the Earth. Will definitely keep reading this author.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Fifth Knight: gripping stuff! November 24, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
"The Fifth Knight" is not a genre that I would normally be drawn to, but I started reading Episode 1 on a recommendation from a friend and was gripped from the start and can't wait to get my hands on the next part.

The two main characters, Palmer and Sister Theodosia are intriguing. I'm hoping for some form of redemption for Palmer and I have my own theories about why Theodosia is so important.

I like the way the vernacular is used to give a feel of the period, with words that I've never heard before, yet need little or no explanation.

I was about half-way through the first part when my doorbell rang and I was cursing because I needed to read on. I now feel the same about Episode 2. Bring it on!
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good plot December 5, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A great series when between books. The characters are feisty and the setting brings one back to simpler times, yet greed and tests of morality, honor, integrity, and ethics are at the forefront.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Quite Engaging
Was a nice story and enjoyable. Good character build up and plot lines.
I liked it very much, thanks! Read more
Published 2 days ago by Nurse Kristini
4.0 out of 5 stars A great read
I enjoyed this book immensely. I read other reviews that said they couldn't believe the interaction between the knight and the nun, that it didn't seem real or natural. Read more
Published 3 days ago by Daryl T. Glover
1.0 out of 5 stars History rewritten into fiction --poorly done
Too much to not like in this book. The "nun" was such a dimwit, the "fifth knight", not much brighter, and the rehashing of old myths about the Catholic Church... Read more
Published 3 days ago by Texas Reader
3.0 out of 5 stars History???
It seemed rather shallow. While the story kept my interest for awhile it became very predictable. I don't feel like my knowledge of early English history was increased in any way... Read more
Published 6 days ago by T. Silver
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
very entertaining
Published 7 days ago by hank abbott
4.0 out of 5 stars An interesting spin of life
An interesting book into the regards that it takes many curves and winding roads as the story unwound. A good read.
Published 14 days ago by David S
4.0 out of 5 stars Well Done!
Well thought out with great plot twists throughout. Thoroughly enjoyed this read.
Published 15 days ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful!!!!!
I know that this is the very best historical novel of Henry II I have read in recent years! Thanks
Published 19 days ago by Kathleen K. Peters
5.0 out of 5 stars entertaining
Right from the start it captures interest as well as little twists and turns along the way not expected keeps the pages turning
Published 27 days ago by Magarette B.
4.0 out of 5 stars Multi-format is great!!!
I really like the ability to switch between audio and written. Worked very well though not flawless.
Published 1 month ago by Smiley
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More About the Author

E.M. Powell is the author of medieval thriller THE FIFTH KNIGHT which was a #1 Amazon Bestseller. Born and raised in the Republic of Ireland into the family of Michael Collins (the legendary revolutionary and founder of the Irish Free State), she now lives in the north west of England with her husband and daughter and a Facebook-friendly dog. She is a member of the Historical Novel Society, International Thriller Writers and Romance Writers of America. She is a reviewer for the HNS (fiction and non-fiction). Find out more by visiting

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Discuss Episode Six of "The Fifth Knight"
Well done. The king was human and fatherly. A nice character development of the king. A happy ending although not a surprise it was satisfying.
I enjoyed it all the way through.
Jan 22, 2013 by Claire E. Todd |  See all 16 posts
Discuss Episode Four of "The Fifth Knight"
Hi Lawrence- I'm so please you're enjoying my book & thank you for your purchase. Sorry to hear episode 5 hasn't appeared yet- it's definitely due today! I've sent a query to someone on the publishing side to try and find out what's happening. There was another Kindle Serial released the same day... Read More
Jan 8, 2013 by E.M. Powell |  See all 16 posts
Discuss Episode One of "The Fifth Knight"
Just a gut instinct that is an ok guy. He is trying so hard to be the person that his job requires him to be but he can't do that. I can't wait to see where this goes. I am curious to see where the mother of Sister Theodosia fits into all of this. Have i missed something or am I still suppose to... Read More
Nov 24, 2012 by Susan Crowe |  See all 21 posts
I received an email notifying me that the next episode is ready, but it will not download to my Kindle. The last one came through fine. And yes, the reader is turned on and receiving wifi. Is there any way to manually download?

Thanks, Janice
Jan 23, 2013 by Janice L. Mills |  See all 5 posts
Discuss Episode Five of "The Fifth Knight"
Why haven't I received this yet? My wireless is turned on but Episode 5 has not been delivered to my Kindle.
Jan 10, 2013 by Jerry L. Austin |  See all 7 posts
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