Labyrinth - Languedoc, Bk 1 Author:Kate Mosse July 2005. In the Pyrenees mountains near Carcassonne, Alice, a volunteer at an archaeological dig, stumbles into a cave and makes a startling discovery-two crumbling skeletons, strange writings on the walls, and the pattern of a labyrinth. — Eight hundred years earlier, on the eve of a brutal crusade that will rip apart southern France, a young ... more »woman named Alais is given a ring and a mysterious book for safekeeping by her father. The book, he says, contains the secret of the true Grail, and the ring, inscribed with a labyrinth, will identify a guardian of the Grail. Now, as crusading armies gather outside the city walls of Carcassonne, it will take a tremendous sacrifice to keep the secret of the labyrinth safe.« less
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The book started off a bit slow, taking its time to really build up the story - then it became really intense right near the end but ended rather quickly. The very last chapter was satisfying (and left a bit of a lump in my throat), but it did feel a bit rushed right before then especially with the slow lead-up prior to that. But I liked the story and the history so it was definitely worth reading.
This was very difficult for me to read. The writer includes liberal (and annoying) doses of French and Occitan words. There is a glossary at the back of the novel, so you find yourself constantly interrupting your reading (sometimes several times a page) to flick to the glossary. I got about 1/3 of the way through and stopped. Just couldn't take anymore. I say don't waste your time.
I read this book for our Book Club. I liked it; however, everyone else did not like it. The average rating was about a 2.5 out of 5. Most were excited about the subject matter and looked forward to reading it, based on the Professional Reviews. They were greatly disappointed. Women felt it dragged in the beginning and didn't take off until chapter 52 - about 3/5s of the way in. The end was filled with too many details and got confusing. Another note was the author gave way too many scenic details. Also those who did not have a French language background lost a lot in the French and Occitane phrases Mosse used throughout the book. We were left with many ?s, as well. There were many more facets people did not like. All of us - 9 - felt we would not read anymore books by Mosse.