The Iron King by Maurice Druon

It is 1307 in France. The kingdom is broke, and King Philippe IV, known as the Iron King, is looking for sources of money. The Knights Templar, one of the wealthiest organizations in the world, seems like a good place to get it, but they refuse France a loan.

The Iron King is the first book of an historical series named The Accursed Kings. The story is set in France during the last years of the reign of the King Philip IV.

Sometimes reading history books can be fastidious (especially if it is a complicated period) and that’s why I love this book, it is history as a story; it allows you to learn about history without forcing yourself. All the characters in the book are real and all the events are based on real events, the story give us lots of excitement based on facts.

Maurice Druon brings back history to life with solid characters, interesting plots and a fascinating 14th century France; after all he is best known for his extensive historical research, that allows him to create an impeccable balance between history, romance, humor, drama, etc. The author also included several detailed notes about historical points at the end of the book.

This is something you will find in the back cover of the book, so it is not a spoiler; by far my favorite part is the execution of Jacques de Molay and how he cursed all those who participated in his condemnation. This curse extends to Philip’s family for thirteen generations.

Definitively a good read full of interesting history, I have read all 7 books and I’m planning to re-read them again.

The Accursed Kings series:

1. The Iron King
2. The Strangled Queen
3. The Poisons of the Crown
4. The Royal Succession
5. The She-Wolf of France
6. The Lily and the Lion
7. When a King Loses France

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