The Templar Legacy: A Novel
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The ancient order of the Knights Templar possessed untold wealth and absolute power over kings and popes . . . until the Inquisition, when they were wiped from the face of the earth, their hidden riches lost. But now two forces vying for the treasure have learned that it is not at all what they thought it was每and its true nature could change the modern world.

Cotton Malone, one-time top operative for the U.S. Justice Department, is enjoying his quiet new life as an antiquarian book dealer in Copenhagen when an unexpected call to action reawakens his hair-trigger instincts每and plunges him back into the cloak-and-dagger world he thought he*d left behind.

It begins with a violent robbery attempt on Cotton*s former supervisor, Stephanie Nelle, who*s far from home on a mission that has nothing to do with national security. Armed with vital clues to a series of centuries-old puzzles scattered across Europe, she means to crack a mystery that has tantalized scholars and fortune-hunters through the ages by finding the legendary cache of wealth and forbidden knowledge thought to have been lost forever when the order of the Knights Templar was exterminated in the fourteenth century. But she*s not alone. Competing for the historic prize每and desperate for the crucial information Stephanie possesses每is Raymond de Roquefort, a shadowy zealot with an army of assassins at his command.

Welcome or not, Cotton seeks to even the odds in the perilous race. But the more he learns about the ancient conspiracy surrounding the Knights Templar, the more he realizes that even more than lives are at stake. At the end of a lethal game of conquest, rife with intrigue, treachery, and craven lust for power, lies a shattering discovery that could rock the civilized world每and, in the wrong hands, bring it to its knees.


From the Hardcover edition.

Customer Reviews:

  • could it get any worse...
    i doubt it. truly one of the worst written books i have ever read. so bad i felt compelled totype this out on a kindle and you know what that is like. do not buy this under pain of intense boredom....more info
  • Not the Da Vinci Code
    It seems these days that any book about the Templars immediately gets branded as another Da Vinci Code by psudo marketing geniuses at the publishers and by those reviewing it. This one suffered the same fate. I found it very refreshing.

    While it was slow to reward my patience, the last hundred pages or so made the read worth it. The Malone character is fun to follow as he gets drawn into the plot himself.

    A new book out by Dave Brody will likely also be lumped by some into the Da Vinci Code camp, but it's anything but. "Cabal of The Westford Knight: Templars at the Newport Tower" is packed on every page with facts about the Templars but expertly ropes in many overlooked clues on this side of the Atlantic.


    ...more info
  • Needs more research on characters
    Though this is fiction, readers today are sophisticated enough to spot shoddy fact checking. Like another reviewer, I was pulled out of the story by the strange comments about Cotton's position with the Justice Dept.
    His boss would indeed not make as little as 70K a year. She would be in the senior executive service level making well over 120K a year. A typical journeyman federal agent alone makes about 85K.
    And Cotton being an attorney and working field agent is just pure baloney. Think of how Tom Clancy makes his character an analyst, who when thrown into action, stumbles through it by instinct and luck. And is frequently out bested by the pros.
    While it's true the FBI used to require agents to be attorneys that was decades ago. An attorney would never do any legwork or have such training, ever. They would utilize the special agents of whatever agency was conducting the investigation. An attorney pushes a pencil, period.
    Also the armed monks were too much of a stretch for me. Could have used ceremonial daggers at least. All in all not his best work at all.
    Fiction aside, realism must enter the picture. Other thriller writers do their homework, especially regarding main characters' professions.
    For a much more realistic take on spies and agents with a heavier dose of
    esoteric history check out:
    SOLOMON'S KEY THE CODIS PROJECT: A CONSPIRACY THRILLER...more info
  • Blaaah. (Bland Characters=Bland Story)
    I am right now reading this book, but I'm finding it a real struggle to get through. It's not that the plot confuses me at all. The problem I'm having is that I cannot bring myself to give a rat's a** what happens to any of the characters (and that always diminishes my interest in a novel!!) For me, characters that are so bland and flat and one dimensional (as Berry's are here) make for a very dull read. At this point, I'm merely persevering for the sake of finishing what I started.
    I'd not read any Steve Berry books before. . .just spied this in a used bookstore and was dazzled by the effusive cover blurbs, so I snatched it up. Is this book a fair representative of all of Berry's writings? If so, then I will mentally earmark him a "one-to-skip" author. But I pose the question, since I wouldn't want to write the guy off unfairly......more info
  • Excruciating...
    I read this book a few months after reading Berry's "The Third Secret", which I enjoyed and gave a highly-rated review. Unfortunately, this book was nowhere near as enjoyable. I had to force my way through it after stopping a half-dozen times.

    Characters were inconsistent, exposition was superfluous, and the pacing was erratic. "Templar Legacy" was as bad as "Third Secret" was good.

    I gave it two stars because I still believe Berry put in much hard work in researching this book and I can appreciate that....more info
  • Huh?
    This is not a bad action/suspense novel. The story keeps moving without much let up in the story. However, to really get into the book, you have to really suspend your common sense. In the tale, one of the heroes calls and lets the main antagonist know where all of the protagonists are hiding. I was happy when this hero was killed for this blunder. I guess the author, Steve Berry, could not think of another way to get the antagonist to the place of the final climax.

    Also, if you have ever read the New Testament, you will see the several holes in the story. Mr. Berry, and some of his characters, claims there are contradictions in the Books of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, but these contradictions only exist because Berry took verses out of context. Berry states that the New Testament authors changed the shepherds who learn of Jesus Christ's impending birth into the wise men who visit Jesus after he was born. No where does such an inconsistency exist.

    Also, Berry claims that Jesus' last words are different in three of the Books. However, again, if Berry had read the New Testament, he would know that Jesus' last words were "It is finished." These types of error, religious and historical, are throughout the book.

    So if you can ignore all of Berry's "facts," then this book is a good read.
    ...more info
  • Can't Ballantine Books afford an editor?
    Read The Templar legacy and throughout I wondered why the book hadn't been edited. Spelling mistakes, grammatical errors, reams of purple prose, misuse of homonyms, redundancies...you name it, it was there. This is a very poorly written book, and that takes away from the story. Are they simply rushing any book that resembles the Da Vinci Code into print as fast as possible? It's the only reason I can see for publishing such a raw work....more info
  • Tsk, Tsk
    I guess I'll go against most of the reviews. I find editorial mistakes in most the books I read so that does not bother me so much. Sorry, but I didn't notice any serious ones in this book. This is the 2nd book I've read by Berry, the first being The Third Secret. At times the plots seem to be following the same line. I agree there was a lot of confusion in this and the ground covered in the short time they did is unbelievable. I have read the Da Vinci Code and Demons and Angels.
    One thing we all have to agree on Jesus Christ did exist or there wouldn't be so much study and people trying to dispute the things that happened. Was he married? did he father a child? Did rise again and ascend into heaven after appearing to several followers? Was he rich or poor? and so on. Has there ever been a person of interest that so much as been written about for 2000 years?
    P.S. I get my books from the library or passed on by friends, rarely do I buy a book. Why bother? the libraries are crammed full and my local library is the best and keeps me supplied,
    ....more info
  • Solve the puzzle, do some fighting: never gets really exciting
    The Knights Templar were annihilated in the 14th century by the French inquisition, bot there have alays been rumours about a hidden treasure of wealth and knowledge. This book, in the tradition of The Da Vinci code and loads of others books that have been published after that explores the potential whereabouts and contents of such a treasure. I won't tell much about the story because that will give away the whole plot, but for me the main problem with the book was that it tries to combine giving a wealth of information with building an exciting story and that does not really work: after a few pages of bad guys chasing good guys or vice versa everybody returns to his/her desk for some more intellectual excercises trynig to solve the riddles that are involved in locating the treasure. Than there are a few pages of shooting and chasing again and then there is some more information on the history of the Knights Templar. And this sequel continues for more than 400 pages... All in all rather Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde-like: I prefer either a scholarly work on the Knights Templar OR a thrilling chase-the-treasure book instead of one book trying to combine both....more info
  • Brilliant and Action-Packed!
    The Templar Legacy: A Novel
    This novel is brilliant and filled with action and plot development, from cover to cover. Mysteries, cryptograms and puzzles intrigue the reader in their journey through its pages, while progressive bits of information become a guide and makes it difficult to put the novel aside for one's daily tasks. Steve Berry challenges the reader's psyche as well as fundamental beliefs and promises to either strengthen or weaken religious resolve.

    Content Points:
    -Slight dynamic growth of key characters (Mostly concerning family).
    -Very clear conflict distinction between the protagonists and antagonists).
    -The facts are well defined (if sometimes questionable) and the language is occasionally misprinted or misrepresented- not to an alarming degree.

    If "The Templar Legacy" is absorbed for fictional pleasure (not for a factual historical account or as a linguistic reference), it is a fun read, indeed. Highly analytical personalities may want to avoid reading....more info
  • Not a Fun Read
    I finished reading Steve Berry's THE TEMPLAR LEGACY. It wasn't a fun read. As several reviewers noted, Berry introduces numerous characters, but doesn't bother to develop them. So I found it hard to care for any of these folks, and that is a fatal flaw for any novel.

    Even the hero of the story, Cotton Malone, is as flat as a pancake. He just happens to be there, observing all the other characters, who obviously have a lot more at stake than he does. As for Stephanie Nelle, another key character, she is downright unlikable. The rest of the gang is equally unappealing.
    Moreover, the plot is awkward. Too confusing, too wordy. What little action there is (mostly chases and gunfights) is boring and repetitive. Between the action, Berry interjects a constant barrage of historical information. (Or is it misinformation?) Much of this material is dry as dust and unenlightening as well. In my opinion, this is a tedious book.

    Let's face it. Berry is on a crusade of his own. It's a full fledged assault on the essence of Christianity. His characters repeat over and over and over again: "The Gospels are inconsistent with each other.' The main point of Berry's novel is that rational-modern-day reasonable-educated people "know" the resurrection of Jesus never happened. Berry's goal is to show what might have happened to build up this fantastic legend. Then for good measure the characters in this book find not only Jesus's bones, but also a very convenient confession letter from Simon (Peter) claiming the whole story of miracles and resurrection is nothing but a fraud. The author admits this letter came from his own imagination.

    What Steve Berry overlooks is the real historical Simon (Peter) died a very long, slow, painful death rather than deny Jesus's deity. There is no doubt Peter and Paul plus many others really did believe they saw, heard, and spoke to the risen Christ. How do we know that? They were willing to die for it. Now, what would Steve Berry be willing to stake his life on?

    Has Berry even read the Bible? Here are a few quotes from THE TEMPLAR LEGACY:

    1. Steve Berry: "There's absolutely no mention of Jesus ever saying a word about the prayer in the garden or the temptation in the wilderness. Yet we know its every detail. How? All of the Gospels speak of the disciples fleeing at Jesus's arrest - so none of them were there - yet detailed accounts of the crucifixion are recorded in all four. Where did these details come from? What the Roman soldiers did, what Pilate and Simon did. How would the Gospel writers know any of that?"

    Answer: John 16:7-14 (New International Version) "But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: in regard to sin, because men do not believe in me; in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.
    "I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you."

    2. Steve Berry: "Matthew says Jesus was an aristocrat, descended from David, in line to be king. Luke agrees with the David connection, but points to a lesser class."

    Answer: Jesus's ancestry is listed both in Matthew 1:1-18 and in Luke 3:23-38. Read those passages for yourself. The names differ in Matthew and Luke, but to claim "Matthew says Jesus was an aristocrat, descended from David, in line to be king", while Luke "points to a lesser class" is entirely in the imagination of Steve Berry. If he had simply said the genealogies were inconsistent, he would have had a point.

    3. Steve Berry: "Mark went an entirely different direction and spawned the image of a poor carpenter."

    Answer: Matthew refers to Jesus as the carpenter's son. Mark refers to Jesus as the carpenter. Neither say or infer "a poor carpenter".
    Here are the only passages speaking of "carpenter" in the Gospels:
    Matthew 13:55 (New International Version): "Isn't this the carpenter's son? Isn't his mother's name Mary, and aren't his brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas?"

    Mark 6:3 (New International Version): "Where did this man get these things?" they asked. "What's this wisdom that has been given him, that he even does miracles! Isn't this the carpenter? Isn't this Mary's son and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? Aren't his sisters here with us? And they took offense at him."

    4. Steve Berry: "Luke says shepherds visited. Matthew calls them wise men."

    Answer: The NIV calls the "wise men" Magi. To state the obvious, isn't it just possible that both shepherds and Magi visited Jesus? None of the Gospels tells us everything that happened. They each selected the events they wanted to relate. Luke saw fit to mention the shepherds, while Matthew spoke of the Magi. That's not a contradiction. To imply they were the same people merely illustrates Berry's attempt to ridicule the scriptures.

    5. Steve Berry: "Luke said the holy family lived in Nazareth and journeyed to Bethlehem for a birth in a manger. Matthew says the family was well off and lived in Bethlehem where Jesus was born -- not in a manger but in a house."

    Answer: Yes, Luke does tell us Joseph and Mary went to Bethlehem, but he never uses Berry's term: "the holy family". Matthew, on the other hand, neither says nor implies "the family was well off" nor does he claim "Jesus was born in a house". This is what Matthew writes about the birth of Jesus:

    Matthew 1:24-2:1 (New International Version): " When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus. After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem."

    Again, the two Gospels provide us with different details of the same event, but neither contradicts the another.

    6. Steve Berry: "The Gospels don't even agree on the date of the crucifixion. John says the day before the Passover, the other three say the day after."

    Answer: Berry is right about John. John 19:31 (New International Version): "Now it was the day of Preparation, and the next day was to be a special Sabbath."

    That Sabbath was Passover.

    However, he is wrong about Matthew, Mark, and Luke.

    Matthew 27:62 (New International Version): "The next day, the one after Preparation Day, the chief priests and the Pharisees went to Pilate."
    Mark 15:42 (New International Version): "It was Preparation Day (that is, the day before the Sabbath)."
    Luke 23:54 (New International Version): "It was Preparation Day, and the Sabbath was about to begin."

    Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John all agree on the date of the crucifixion. It was on the Day of Preparation for the Sabbath -- Friday. Now, what does that tell us about Steve Berry's research? His objectivity? His fairness? If he is going to write on the Bible, he should at least make an effort to read it first.
    ...more info
  • Good story, poorly written...
    I won't rehash the many criticisms of this book... but fair warning to anyone who picks it up: the story is good, but a little cliched and dull in points. Characters are one dimensional and dialogue is contrived and wooden (tip for author - when characters "shout", try adding an exclamation point or anything other than a simple period.) Writing style is decent and the story contains fairly good dramatic elements, but there's nothing new here... a good vacation read, but nothing more. One cool thing - I like that the author highlighted his variations from actual history at the end of the book, and didn't try and pretend that the historical context was accurate - Dan Brown could take a queue from this. ...more info
  • No, it's not the DaVinci Code....The Templar Legacy is much better written
    For perhaps the next 5-10 years, any novels that attempt a storyline involving Jesus, and cover-ups by the Christian Religion involving Jesus, are bound to be compared to the DaVinci Code. It's inevitable. So...I'd like to start off my review by inserting my one comparison into the fold....this novel, The Templar Legacy, is by far better written than Dan Brown's giant behemoth best seller. While The Da Vinci Code left me HORRIBLY flat and unimpressed with it's 'dumbed down' style of prose that read like the monotone 'adult' voices in Peanuts Cartoons of old, Steve Berry's take on a religious-themed thriller is far easier to digest.

    The storyline: Cotton Malone, a retired US Government Agent who now makes his living as a used/rare book dealer in Copenhagen, spies his old boss, Stephanie Nelle, in town, where she is assaulted by a purse snatcher. Cotton, reacting on instinct and wanting to aide his former boss, pursues the perpetrator, and realizes it's much more than just a simple grab and run. He is immediately drawn into a centuries old mystery involving the Church at Rennes Le Chateau in France, and a hidden order of the 'thought to have been eradicated' Knights Templar. In aiding Stephanie, much to her immediate resistance, Cotton finds himself the target of assassins, the recipient of double-crosses galore, and thrust back into the life he left behind as being 'too much of a risk'...hot on the trail of some great 'truth' involving Jesus Christ and the resurrection following his crucifixion....a 'truth' that some would die to reveal, and some would die to protect. Aided by a motley group of 'interested parties'...Cotton travels to Franch in search of the elusive 'Great Devise' that the Templars seem hell-bent on acquiring first.

    A really good read...plenty of action, plenty of twists and turns, and just enough 'fact' to make for an engaging questioning of religious
    'truths' we've all heard for years.

    Far better written than DaVinci Code...and a recommended read for anyone enjoying a good thriller....more info
  • Okay Novel
    The Templar Legacy has an interesting premise, however it never excited me. There's mystery, historical information and lots of action . The story is flat. I did not care about any of the people in the story and Mark the good "brother" didn't seem to possess any kind of spirituality.
    I was entertained but the novel lacked spice....more info
  • Berry at his best
    After reading all of Steve Berry's books through The Charlemagne Pursuit, I feel that this is his best. Well written, some great plot twists and, as always, interesting characters, but not so many characters so that you get lost!...more info
  • Such great potential...
    Let me just start by saying that I loved the Da Vinci code. Since reading it, I have watched everything I could on the Discovery channel and read everything I could from the library about different religious conspiracy theories and such.

    When I picked up this novel, I expected it to be about the same quality as Dan Brown's stuff. I read the outstanding prologue and was immediately hooked. And then, about 150 pages later, I put the book down, never to be opened again. I can probably count on my fingers the number of books I've started without finishing, but never have I made a conscious decision to stop reading a book. And I've read a LOT of books.

    The historical parts of the novel were great...I actually learned some things about the Templars. The scenes taking place inside the Templar abbey were also pretty good, especially the battles between de Roquefort and the Seneschal. But the vast majority of what I read (the plot involving the main characters) was some of the worst writing I've ever seen. The dialogue was hollow and laughable, and was said by characters equally a hollow and laughable. The prose could have easily been written by a high school freshman (someone needs to go back to English class and learn about run-on sentences). The plot was basically as follows: get to a big house in a hurry, find the resident dead, exchange gunfire with assassins, escape quickly to another house, repeat.

    Again, the best way I can explain it is to say that I actually put the book down with the intention of never picking it up again. A book like this had such great potential, but MAN what a disappointment!...more info
  • Terrific Read
    Loved the story. Right on with the genere. Excellent choice if you are into the religious conspiricy themed books....more info
  • Not the Da Vinci Code
    It seems these days that any book about the Templars immediately gets branded as another Da Vinci Code by psudo marketing geniuses at the publishers and by those reviewing it. This one suffered the same fate. I found it very refreshing.

    While it was slow to reward my patience, the last hundred pages or so made the read worth it. The Malone character is fun to follow as he gets drawn into the plot himself.

    A new book out by Dave Brody will likely also be lumped by some into the Da Vinci Code camp, but it's anything but. "Cabal of The Westford Knight: Templars at the Newport Tower" is packed on every page with facts about the Templars but expertly ropes in many overlooked clues on this side of the Atlantic.


    ...more info
  • Tragic Templar Time Waster
    This book is horrible. I finished it out of spite having paid good money for it while away on a quiet weekend. It was such a sorry tale that it actually took me 5 months to reach the end as I couldn't bear to read it too often, I had to go through a kind of detox after each part I read.
    In my opinion this author has no real talent, though, admittedly, this is the only book of his I have tried. It would take a lot of persuading to make me pick up another title by him. The guy is obviously only able to put in the hours to write, but his style and imagination are average at best. Some of the book reads like a first draft that he couldn't improve on later. Using names for characters such as ''Red Jacket'' or''Short Hair'' was lazy and off putting. The name ''Cotton'' grinds like finger nails on a chalkboard every time you read it
    This book is like a bad daytime soap opera. Corny and full of overdone stereotypes.
    Lastly, sorry christians,don't flatter yourselves thinking that the author was trying to make anti christian points, he was only trying to emulate the Da Vinci Code, remember the great secret there was also a threat to the church. Funny how one christian reviewer commented that this was '''an irrational and unfounded slam against my beliefs ''. The irony there is almost too much to handle....more info
  • Not a Fun Read
    I finished reading Steve Berry's THE TEMPLAR LEGACY. It wasn't a fun read. As several reviewers noted, Berry introduces numerous characters, but doesn't bother to develop them. So I found it hard to care for any of these folks, and that is a fatal flaw for any novel.

    Even the hero of the story, Cotton Malone, is as flat as a pancake. He just happens to be there, observing all the other characters, who obviously have a lot more at stake than he does. As for Stephanie Nelle, another key character, she is downright unlikable. The rest of the gang is equally unappealing.
    Moreover, the plot is awkward. Too confusing, too wordy. What little action there is (mostly chases and gunfights) is boring and repetitive. Between the action, Berry interjects a constant barrage of historical information. (Or is it misinformation?) Much of this material is dry as dust and unenlightening as well. In my opinion, this is a tedious book.

    Let's face it. Berry is on a crusade of his own. It's a full fledged assault on the essence of Christianity. His characters repeat over and over and over again: "The Gospels are inconsistent with each other.' The main point of Berry's novel is that rational-modern-day reasonable-educated people "know" the resurrection of Jesus never happened. Berry's goal is to show what might have happened to build up this fantastic legend. Then for good measure the characters in this book find not only Jesus's bones, but also a very convenient confession letter from Simon (Peter) claiming the whole story of miracles and resurrection is nothing but a fraud. The author admits this letter came from his own imagination.

    What Steve Berry overlooks is the real historical Simon (Peter) died a very long, slow, painful death rather than deny Jesus's deity. There is no doubt Peter and Paul plus many others really did believe they saw, heard, and spoke to the risen Christ. How do we know that? They were willing to die for it. Now, what would Steve Berry be willing to stake his life on?

    Has Berry even read the Bible? Here are a few quotes from THE TEMPLAR LEGACY:

    1. Steve Berry: "There's absolutely no mention of Jesus ever saying a word about the prayer in the garden or the temptation in the wilderness. Yet we know its every detail. How? All of the Gospels speak of the disciples fleeing at Jesus's arrest - so none of them were there - yet detailed accounts of the crucifixion are recorded in all four. Where did these details come from? What the Roman soldiers did, what Pilate and Simon did. How would the Gospel writers know any of that?"

    Answer: John 16:7-14 (New International Version) "But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: in regard to sin, because men do not believe in me; in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.
    "I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you."

    2. Steve Berry: "Matthew says Jesus was an aristocrat, descended from David, in line to be king. Luke agrees with the David connection, but points to a lesser class."

    Answer: Jesus's ancestry is listed both in Matthew 1:1-18 and in Luke 3:23-38. Read those passages for yourself. The names differ in Matthew and Luke, but to claim "Matthew says Jesus was an aristocrat, descended from David, in line to be king", while Luke "points to a lesser class" is entirely in the imagination of Steve Berry. If he had simply said the genealogies were inconsistent, he would have had a point.

    3. Steve Berry: "Mark went an entirely different direction and spawned the image of a poor carpenter."

    Answer: Matthew refers to Jesus as the carpenter's son. Mark refers to Jesus as the carpenter. Neither say or infer "a poor carpenter".
    Here are the only passages speaking of "carpenter" in the Gospels:
    Matthew 13:55 (New International Version): "Isn't this the carpenter's son? Isn't his mother's name Mary, and aren't his brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas?"

    Mark 6:3 (New International Version): "Where did this man get these things?" they asked. "What's this wisdom that has been given him, that he even does miracles! Isn't this the carpenter? Isn't this Mary's son and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon? Aren't his sisters here with us? And they took offense at him."

    4. Steve Berry: "Luke says shepherds visited. Matthew calls them wise men."

    Answer: The NIV calls the "wise men" Magi. To state the obvious, isn't it just possible that both shepherds and Magi visited Jesus? None of the Gospels tells us everything that happened. They each selected the events they wanted to relate. Luke saw fit to mention the shepherds, while Matthew spoke of the Magi. That's not a contradiction. To imply they were the same people merely illustrates Berry's attempt to ridicule the scriptures.

    5. Steve Berry: "Luke said the holy family lived in Nazareth and journeyed to Bethlehem for a birth in a manger. Matthew says the family was well off and lived in Bethlehem where Jesus was born -- not in a manger but in a house."

    Answer: Yes, Luke does tell us Joseph and Mary went to Bethlehem, but he never uses Berry's term: "the holy family". Matthew, on the other hand, neither says nor implies "the family was well off" nor does he claim "Jesus was born in a house". This is what Matthew writes about the birth of Jesus:

    Matthew 1:24-2:1 (New International Version): " When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son. And he gave him the name Jesus. After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem."

    Again, the two Gospels provide us with different details of the same event, but neither contradicts the another.

    6. Steve Berry: "The Gospels don't even agree on the date of the crucifixion. John says the day before the Passover, the other three say the day after."

    Answer: Berry is right about John. John 19:31 (New International Version): "Now it was the day of Preparation, and the next day was to be a special Sabbath."

    That Sabbath was Passover.

    However, he is wrong about Matthew, Mark, and Luke.

    Matthew 27:62 (New International Version): "The next day, the one after Preparation Day, the chief priests and the Pharisees went to Pilate."
    Mark 15:42 (New International Version): "It was Preparation Day (that is, the day before the Sabbath)."
    Luke 23:54 (New International Version): "It was Preparation Day, and the Sabbath was about to begin."

    Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John all agree on the date of the crucifixion. It was on the Day of Preparation for the Sabbath -- Friday. Now, what does that tell us about Steve Berry's research? His objectivity? His fairness? If he is going to write on the Bible, he should at least make an effort to read it first.
    ...more info
  • Pretty Bad
    This has got to be one of the worst books I have ever read. Come on now, 400 monks at a secret monastery in France? Do they even have 400 monks in all of France today? And one of them crazy enough to try and wreak vengeance on Phillip IV of France? Who has been dead for 700 years? And this nutcase gets elected Master of the monastery? And I don't care if they are Templars, but I cannot imagine any monastery teaching the Gospel of Thomas to its monks. From the parts that I have read of that Gospel, it sounds like it was put together by some ancient con artist. If you're going to write about the Catholic church, at least find out about it before you start making stuff up. The plot of the book does move along, but the whole premise is weak, the dialogue lame and the characters barely believable. ...more info
  • Berry at his best
    After reading all of Steve Berry's books through The Charlemagne Pursuit, I feel that this is his best. Well written, some great plot twists and, as always, interesting characters, but not so many characters so that you get lost!...more info
  • Well worth reading
    I wrote an elaborate review then lost my interent connection just prior to "publishing" it. So this review is condensed to its simplest form.
    This book does several things fairly well. I'd give it highest marks for fleshing out Templar history and the entertainment value grows as the book progresses....more info
  • Templar Legacy
    Steve Berry does a great job of weaving a beleivable story with complex characters. The story flows well and even if your not that into this subject, which I am, its an enjoyable read. ...more info
  • Great read, alot of fun
    Steve Berry has created quite an interesting series here with Cotton Malone.
    It's mostly myth and legend, but, still alot of fun to read. As the series progresses so does the action and adventure.
    A great 'getaway' for all.
    Templar fiction and fact mixed together to make it one of the more interesting I've read so far....more info
  • Was just as good as Da Vinci Code & sometimes better
    A friend who knew how much I loved Da Vinci Code handed me this book last week. As the cover said - it was hard to put down. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. I liked the characters. I don't agree with some of the other reviews that there were no character development. And as a person who has read and studied the 4 gospels, I liked that it challenged them. A person should always seek the truth. I wasn't offended at all as a Christian. Now that I have been introduced to Steve Berry, I look forward to reading more of his work in the future. ...more info
  • The Rev. Berry
    I purchased the audio book version for a road trip and around the 4th or 5th disc began fast forwarding chapters. The action and loose plot, along with mostly weak characters -- that whole cotton thing is pretty annoying-- were decent until Berry began preaching his disdain for the opium for the masses beliefs. Why do writers seem to have a need to ruin good stories with long periods of sticky shove-it-in-your-face beliefs, outlandish lies and false conclusions. Stick to action and mystery, and leave the religious "education" to those with an ounce of true knowledge, not an axe to grind....more info
  • great book
    if you liked the da vinci code you will like this book, its definately a good read, and will keep you interested...more info
  • FACT OR FICTION
    Having just completed The Templar Legacy I wanted to thank Steve Berry for writing a book that kept the mind constantly engaged in conjuring the characters next moves and creating situations that are stimulating as well as entertaining and plausible. The Templar Legacy held me spell bound. As soon as I thought I had it figured out, the author threw me off the track with new elements of surprise.. Mr. Berry has incorporated historical places and events so tactfully that the reader forgets which is fact and which is fiction and ends with the reader believing The Templar Legacy actually existed.

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  • I don't understand this book
    Call me stupid, but I'm about two-thirds into this book and I can't tell what the #*@& is going on. It weaves all over the place. I can't remember who is who, who did what -- it's a confusing mish mash of characters, events, and plotlines. I suppose if you are really obsessed with the whole Templar thing you could enjoy this book, but otherwise, just go reread the DaVinci Code -- another lame book but head and shoulders above this one. ...more info