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Templar Hardcover – July 9, 2013
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“With Templar, Jordan Mechner combines true flair for classic adventure with a firm grasp of medieval history, for an unforgettable tale of love, gold and glory. And Pham and Puvilland bring their strong individual style to bear on 14th century France with gorgeous art that is both clean and lush at the same time. Put them together and you've got yourself a winner. Michael Curtiz should have been so lucky.” ―David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, creators of HBO's "Game of Thrones"
“The creative trio of Mechner, Pham, and Puvilland got their high-adventure story rolling with Solomon's Thieves (2010). What wasn't apparent in that first volume of the planned trilogy was how deeply into historically weighty territory the story would cut . . . [That history] constitutes a searing, sobering counterweight to the story's high-wire derring-do and jovial camaraderie. Add to all that a nifty Ocean's Eleven–style caper, outstanding artwork, and enough romance to get the heart invested, and you have an epic adventure comic for the ages.” ―Booklist (starred review)
“A wholly engaging and entertaining mix of medieval history, political intrigue, and cinematic thrills in a swashbuckling heist adventure . . . Mechner's (Prince of Persia) tight plot never misses a beat, and the book is a definite page-turner. His passion for the subject is reflected in the story's adherence to actual events and settings, ably visualized by husband-and-wife illustrators Pham and Puvilland, whose art lends itself well to the stirring narrative. It's a rollicking good time and a real gem of a book, well worth the wait and price.” ―Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“A 480-page graphic novel and one of the most perfect representations of what the term means . . . The enormous work has a strong protagonist with complex and even conflicting goals, a wealth of secondary characters with their own goals and stories, and a rich background in a troubled world. It even comes with a selected bibliography and a discussion of further reading. Not many other graphic novels go to that length. Mechner gives a human face to one of the most whispered-about and objectified organizations in Western history: the Knights Templar.” ―Jeff Provine, BlogCritics.org
“Templar is a beautifully executed historical thriller written by famed game designer Jordan Mechner (who created Prince of Persia) and drawn by Leuyen Pham and Alex Puvilland . . . A classic caper story filled with glorious and horrible swordfights, skullduggery, torture, romance, banditry, piety, bravery and treachery. I came to this not knowing much about the Templars and caring about them even less, but found that once I picked the (massive) book up, I couldn't put it down. This is some great and exciting storytelling.” ―Cory Doctorow (author of Homeland and Little Brother)
Top Customer Reviews
The story in Templar is very intense and fast-paced. You are watching men who have been tortured and forced to renounce everything they believe trying to survive with their honor. Mechner, Pham and Puvilland were able to capture the absolute horror of the demise of the Knights Templar. The illustrations powerfully depicted how the knights were forced to confess their alleged crimes through torture. The images are subtle but at the same time horrifying.
Throughout Templar, these surviving knights are struggling to redeem themselves to their beloved Order. The main character, Martin, continued to see ghostly, fallen knights that would lead him to his salvation. I found those images very powerful.
Templar is not all violence and gore. There is humor and a bit of romance as well. There were many times I was laughing at loud at some of the antics of the knights. I liked the use of humor to lessen some of foulness surrounding the characters. Along with the romance, there is a bit of a love triangle which also lessens the dark storyline. It is a very bittersweet love story.
Templar is such a unique read. I had never seen historical fiction in the graphic novel format. It was a truly amazing reading experience. I loved every page!
Even though this is a long book (probably the longest graphic novel I've seen in awhile), this is an exciting action packed story. It takes a little bit to get into the story, as the author delves into some of the history of the knights and what happened to the order, but then...then the action starts and the story takes off like a rocket and you don't want to let go. This is the type of story has a little bit of something for everyone, from romance to adventure to fighting to knights...mostly knights, but still it's fun. Mechner does an excellent job of creating characters that we feel proud to know and follow, that we want to know more about, and that we want to see them live to fight another day.
The illustrations in this book are lavish and gorgeous, with beautiful attention to detail. The texture of the cloth that the knights and others wear, the scruff of their beard, the depth to the buildings of France with the arches and columns...reading this book and looking at the art is like watching a really good animated movie. Some of my favorite scenes in the book are the action sequences with the galloping of the horses and the knights fighting. It's wonderful.
This is an action packed story that high school reader and up will enjoy. I give the book 4 out of 5 stars.
ARC provided by Gina at FirstSecond
A little back story... About three years ago I picked up a copy of Prince of Persia, the graphic novel. Right next to it on the shelf was a copy of Solomon's Thieves, both by the same creators. I knew of Mechner, yet had not read his writing (heck, I played it if you count him writing code). I ended up enjoying Solomon's Thieves more, and waited for a sequel. And waited, and waited.
Thankfully First Second publishing decided on a birthday present for me, releasing Templar for me to, well, buy for myself.
First Second always amazes me with their releases, but this one deserves special mention. 450+ pages tightly bound in hardcover. Most publishers would have gone cheap, or God forbid paperback. Thank you for the extra effort.
Enough with the outside... how about what's inside the book? Some damn fine writing and art, that's what. I was thinking of a way to classify the story... a tragedy? Comedy? The book equivalent of a buddy film? All of the above? Mechner crafted very human characters with hopes, aspirations, and flaws. Best of all, you cared for them right up the the end. I don't want to spoil much, so it's best to experience it for yourself.
I'll go ahead and say it. I really like Pham's art. Puvilland's color really does her inks justice. Pham designed characters with human traits and had them act out with whimsy. I devoured each panel and was in awe of the detail that I had seen. One of he double page spreads at the end made me gasp. I loved it.
The book was an enjoyable read. Do yourself a favor and pick yourself up a copy. As for me, I hope see see Mechner, Pham, and Puvilland back with a new exciting series soon, but not too soon... the three of you deserve a break.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Really enjoyed this book, very streamlined in plot and doesnt dawdle around unecessarily. Recommend recommendedPublished 11 months ago by Mark Dinhobl
Another great work by Jordan Mechner. Missing 1 star because some parts are quite stereotypical/predictable.Published 11 months ago by Aswin A.
A amusing long-form graphic novel. Well crafted, well constructed. Not "amazing", but pretty good!Published 23 months ago by Daniel Klein
Who could ask for more? It's like watching a 1940s historical action film; and it reads in about the same time. Plus it contains a lesson about water seeking its own level.Published 24 months ago by J. Wood
A great graphic novel, reads smooth and yet the pictures show the story. This would be a fun adventure movie. Its almost 500 pages and yet I wish it was much longer.Published on January 7, 2014 by erikcc
It's always nice to discover a graphic novel that's actually a "novel" and not just a rebound comic book series. Read morePublished on December 12, 2013 by Michael K. Smith
I had borrowed this book from my local library. I enjoyed the story so much that I just had to buy it! Read morePublished on October 29, 2013 by J. Bowman
Templar is a fantastic historical novel that also happens to be a great graphic novel as well. I've read many novels about the Knights Templar, and Jordan Mechner is easily at the... Read morePublished on October 4, 2013 by Dan Donovan