"Hugh de Verdon's story has all the qualities you could want in a historical epic - excitement, suspense, love, battles, treachery, and mystery. But it is the humour, and the sublety of the literary allusions that make this book really special." THE DAILY GRAIL "It is rare to find an adventure as exciting as this that also addresses important issues such as the problem of evil and the clash between Christianity and Islam." TEMPLAR NEWS "Lots happens in The Waste Land." THE MONTHLY PUZZLER "Tremendous story-telling, gripping narrative, evocative history" LION AND LEOPARD - What other writers say about The Waste Land Tim Waterstone "Highly original and a most enjoyable read." Stanley Johnson "Sex, violence and more than a dash of romance: Simon Acland's gripping First Crusade mystery thriller rivals the Da Vinci Code for interest and suspense." Douglas Hurd "The Waste Land will be thoroughly enjoyed by anyone with a taste for rollicking adventure laced with a subtle dose of literary learning." Giles MacDonogh "I found it utterly gripping." Juliette Mead "Simon Acland's debut novel is a potent cocktail: take one part First Crusade historical romance, one part modern academic satire - and add three jiggers of coming-of-age, Grail-questing, spur-winning Knight's tale. A rollicking, galloping read from a highly individual story teller."
The Waste Land: the true story of the Holy Grail?
The Waste Land chronicles the adventures of Hugh de Verdon, monk turned knight, during the extraordinary historical events of the First Crusade. He journeys from the great Benedictine Monastery of Cluny to Constantinople, Antioch and Jerusalem. He encounters the Assassins, endures a personal epiphany and discovers the truth behind the Holy Grail.
Hugh de Verdon's tale is retold by a group of desperate Oxford Professors, who discover his autobiographical manuscript in their College library. Their humorous - and murderous - story also provides a commentary on the Eleventh Century events and shows that they are perhaps not all they seem.