July 1209: in Carcassonne a young girl is given a mysterious book by her father which he claims contains the secret of the true Grail. Although Alaïs cannot understand the strange words and symbols hidden within, she knows that her destiny lies in protecting it. It will take great sacrifice and faith to keep the secret of the labyrinth safe - a secret that stretches back thousands of years to the deserts of Ancient Egypt . . .July 2005: Alice Tanner stumbles upon two skeletons during an archaeological dig in the mountains outside Carcassonne. Inside the hidden tomb where the bones lie crumbling, she experiences an overwhelming sense of malevolence, as well as a creeping understanding that, however impossible it seems, she can somehow understand the mysterious ancient words carved into the rock. Too late, Alice realises she's set in motion a terrifying sequence of events that she cannot control and that her destiny is inextricably tied up with the fate of the Cathars 800 years before.
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When Dr Alice Tanner discovers two skeletons during an archaeological dig in southern France, she unearths a link with a horrific and brutal past. But it's not just the sight of the shattered bones that makes her uneasy; there's an overwhelming sense of evil in the tomb that Alice finds hard to shake off, even in the bright French sunshine. Puzzled by the words carved inside the chamber, Alice has an uneasy feeling that she has disturbed something which was meant to remain hidden...
Eight hundred years ago, on the night before a brutal civil war ripped apart Languedoc, a book was entrusted to Alais, a young herbalist and healer. Although she cannot understand the symbols and diagrams the book contains, Alais knows her destiny lies in protecting their secret, at all costs.
Skilfully blending the lives of two women divided by centuries but united by a common destiny, LABYRINTH is a powerful story steeped in the atmosphere and history of southern France.Review:
"The thinking woman's summer reading, chick lit with A levels... saturated with a passionate understanding of the region's past in a way that puts more conventional historical accounts to shame. Mosse wears her learning so lightly, knitting her historical research so neatly into her narrative, that we never get the slightest sense of being preached or lectured to... reminiscent of Jean Plaidy and Mary Renault [in conveying] the texture of various patches of the past with such rich complexity." (Kathryn Hughes THE GUARDIAN, 13 August)
This is a novel clearly fuelled by an authorial obsession with a history, region and concept. The settings are evocative and... there are also some powerful dramatic scenes: the climactic moments where the good and evil women meet and battle it out are particularly compelling... [An] intriguing...passionate book. (Lucy Atkins THE SUNDAY TIMES, 31 July)
"Kate Mosse's Labyrinth provides this year's gripping romp... Labyrinth is very much a Girl's Own story: a grail quest in which women aren't helpless creatures to be rescued, or decorative bystanders, but central to the action, with the capacity to change history." (Geraldine Bedell THE OBSERVER, 31 July)
"A spellbinding adventure story" ( REAL, 5-19 August)
"An action packed adventure of modern conspiracy and medieval passion ... a Grail gripper [and] elegantly written timeslip novel set in France." ( THE INDEPENDENT, 15 July)
"An old-fashioned romance cum spiffing adventure story. Mosse has done her homework.. she puts in lots of colourful, sensual detail. Enjoyable." (Michele Roberts THE TIMES, 16 July)
"'A good book .. and a very interesting adventure" ( BBC RADIO 4's FRONT ROW)
"Magnificent... such a pleasurable read. Mosse infuses each scene with such depth of atmospheric detail that full immersion is inevitable.. the author's vision is epic in scope. Mosse wields admirable control over the vast body of her material and manoeuvres through it with subtlety and grace. [There is a] joyous, whooping pleasure evident in the work of Mosse... [whose] skills are generous and irresistible. ( MSLEXIA, Jul-Sept 05)
"[A] riproaring Grail-quest-for-girls." ( THE INDEPENDENT chart listings, 12 August)
"Labyrinth brings the world of 13th century Languedoc beautifully to life. Fascinating and gripping... and the characters beautifully drawn. Enjoy this absorbing tale." ( IRISH EXAMINER, 30 July)
"Prepare to be chilled by Kate Mosse's archaeological thriller." ( RED, August issue)
"LABYRINTH is a reader's Holy Grail, mixing legend, religion, history, past and present in a heart-wrenching, thrilling tale. Eat your heart out, Dan Brown, this is the real thing." ( Val McDermid)
"A lovely, intelligent novel of discovery and loss, generous in its historical scope and intimate in its tender details." ( Nicci Gerrard)
"A thumping read: Mosse creates a world so complete I began to miss it before the last page. More intriguing than Dan Brown, a conundrum with lasting depth and vigour, Labyrinth captivates from t he first page until the final twist." ( Denise Mina)
"Combines a compelling storyline with a genuinely evocative sense of place." ( Professor Jonathon Phillips)
"Labyrinth, a thrilling quest novel and rattling good read, is destined for the bestseller list!" ( South Coast Magazine)
"Wonderful! Page turning medieval history and adventure - sure to give Dan Brown a run for his money." ( Chichester Observer)
"A spellbinding novel. Mosse mixes a Grail adventure with passion and great writing in a book that for once features two feisty lead women." (Danuta Kean NEW BOOKS MAGAZINE, Summer Reading, Jul/Aug 05)
"Compelling reading... a time-slip adventure story which skilfully blends the lives of two women living 800 years apart." ( LEICESTER MERCURY, 12 July (& other UK regionals))
"A colourful blend of historical fiction, romance, intrigue, betrayal and passion in a rich setting with interesting characters. Labyrinth contains everything you need for that perfect summer read." ( SUFFOLK FREE PRESS, 30 June)
"Brings the world of 13th century Languedoc beautifully to life... [An] absorbing tale." ( BIRMINGHAM POST, 30 July)
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Book Description Penguin Audio, 2006. Book Condition: New. Brand New, Unread Copy in Perfect Condition. A+ Customer Service!. Bookseller Inventory # ABE_book_new_0143058398