PAINTED IN BLOOD by Pup Vaughan-Hughes, Orion £6.99.
CAPTAIN Michel de Montalhac is acknowledged as the greatest dealer of relics in Christendom after supplying King Louis of France with the Crown of Thorns.
However, the King also wants a legendary shroud that bears the image of Christ, which is kept by the Cathars.
The captain and his associate Petroc are caught in political intrigue, religious corruption and a vicious war, as they seek the shroud.
This is the final book in the trilogy that has followed Petroc from runaway novice monk to confidante of popes and kings.
Fiction cleverly interwoven with history and a fitting climax to a much praised series.