Historical thriller – “Cursed Gold” or the continuation of the adventures of Margaux de Dente

Historical thriller – “Cursed Gold” or the continuation of the adventures of Margaux de Dente
Historical thriller – “Cursed Gold” or the continuation of the adventures of Margaux de Dente

In the Haut-Razès region of the Middle Ages, Mireille Calmel recounts the tumultuous life of a heroine already encountered in her previous novels, “The Shadow Templar”.

His historical novels are worthy of the great serialists of the last century. Mireille Calmel is second to none when it comes to imagining twists and turns for her heroes. Her heroine more precisely.
Margaux de Dente, daughter of a Cathar, lives in the Haut Razès valley. The first part of his adventures were told in the two volumes of The Shadow Templar published last year (volume 1 has just been released in paperback by Pocket). The beautiful Margaux is already back in volume 1 of L’or maudit. Still in his manor of Sainte-Eugénie between Quillan and Rhedae, the old name of Rennes-le-Château.
With her husband, Michel, she takes care of Anne, her 5-year-old granddaughter. A resourceful person who stays for long hours at the top of the dungeon to try to spot the white wolf, a beast that sows terror in the countryside and the forest.
On March 6, 1313, Bertrand Leplacier, provost, was informed of the discovery of a new victim of the animal. But near the corpse, a shepherd noticed gold coins and a gauntlet, “a piece of armor, of those with which the Knights of the Temple covered their hands in the past during battles in the East”. And inside the glove, a severed hand.
The novel begins like a thriller, with plenty of suspects. Leplacier leads the investigation while Margaux wants above all to protect her daughter. At the same time, Guillaume de Nogaret, first advisor to King Philippe le Bel, arrived in Carcassonne. His mission is to recover, for the crown, the gold of the Templars in the possession of the master inquisitor of Ablis. Even though all the Cathars have been exterminated, Geoffroy d’Ablis continues his ruthless hunt. He would like to bring down Blanche de Dente.
Despite his dislike for the character, Guillaume de Nogaret negotiated to return to favor at court. Also discover what happened to his father, who mysteriously disappeared. Because in Mireille Calmel’s novels, all the protagonists have multiple secrets. Unmentionable. De Nogaret finds a box stuffed with gold bars. But once back in his father’s old house in the City, “in place of the box containing the gold, sat a bloody hand in which a crossbow bolt had been planted. »
With astonishing mastery, in short and impactful chapters, Mireille Calmel lays the foundations of her story. Gold to be found, plots, revenge and perhaps the resurgence of Catharism because in the Haut-Razès valley, signals light up on the summits: “ as in the past, from hill to hill, the ancient Cathar towers responded to each other. » The second part of L’or maudit is announced for October.
And enthusiasts will be able to read, on the Kessel Media digital platform, a short novel, The Secret of Margaux, which makes the link between The Shadow Templar and this new saga.

“The Cursed Gold” by Mireille Calmel, XO Éditions, 326 pages, €20.90


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