The Knights Templar Revealed at a Barnes and Noble in some discount bin and thought that I should definitely pick it, definitely (and then I immediately thought of Judge Wopner). I thumbed through it and saw they referenced Holy Blood, Holy Grail. Immediately I began to question what the gist was. No longer was it potentially some interesting and engaging research book - it was now firmly in the "fringe" category. It had the potential to bridge regular research with the fringier parts, so I read it with a somewhat jaundiced eye. Hopeful, but jaundiced.
This post, however isn't the actual review of the book - this is the preview of that review. Why is there a preview and not just the regular review? Because I decided to read Dracula since the time I completed it. So I really want to re-read it again before writing the actual review. Why is that? Well, here's what I recall about it.
First, the book tries to link several different theories about the Templars and early civilization linkages. It thankfully wasn't about aliens helping the Minoan civilization achieve some level of greatness. I mean, I like Stargate SG-1 as much as the next guy, but... Anyway, the authors, Butler and Dafoe, reference a few theories about the monolithic cultures, including Minoan connections to the Levant (the Holy Land), a theory (introduced elsewhere) about Salt Lines, and the Templars. It's so intertwined, though, that I really need to re-read it before I can write something cogent about it.
One thing about these books is that they lay out a very logical argument for their point. They use terms like "reasonable to assume" and "it seems likely" which all "seem reasonable" (heh). The problem is that unfortunately all of these likelys and reasonables result in a very small actual percentage. I'll explain that more in the review when I can actually bring an actual example to bear.
So, in the meantime, what did I think of it? I think they raise some interesting ideas about St. Bernard of Clairvaux. And there certainly are some interesting things raised about Bernard that I will have to investigate. Still, given the rest of material, I just recall it being "interesting". Would I recommend it? While I could punt this off to the "real" review, I will say that I would read it only if you have a strong basis in Templar history and can separate the truth from these "facts". Hopefully I can get through it faster than the first time...