Helena Schrader's Historical Fiction

My biographical novel of Balian d'Ibelin in three parts is complete, but the saga continues. Follow me to Cyprus, where Lusignans and Ibelins struggle to put down a rebellion and establish a durable state. Watch for excerpts and updates here.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Knight of Jerusalem -- Search for the Cover

My current project is a biographical novel of Balian d'Ibelin in three parts. The first book in the trilogy will be released this fall under the title: Knight of Jerusalem. The publisher has provided three mock-up covers. Please tell me which you like best by taking part in the poll.

The cover text below will tell you a little more about the content of the book -- and I'll provide more information about it as the publication date gets closer.

Balian, the landless son of a local baron, goes to Jerusalem to seek his fortune. Instead he finds himself trapped into serving a young prince suffering from leprosy. He appears condemned to obscurity and an early death — until the king dies unexpectedly making the leper boy King Baldwin IV of Jerusalem.



The Byzantine princess Maria Comnena was just 13 years old when she arrived in the Kingdom of Jerusalem to cement the alliance between Latin Jerusalem and Greek Constantinople.  Despite her excellent education and intelligence, she is little more than a pretty doll in the eyes of her husband, a man almost three times her age.  Then suddenly the King is dead and at just 20 years of age Maria finds herself a wealthy widow with a vulnerable two-year-old daughter on her hands.




 Meanwhile, the charismatic Kurdish leader Saladin has united the forces of Islam and vowed to drive the Christians into the sea.  Only a united and vigorous defense can save the Christian kingdom, but not only is the king young, inexperienced and mortally ill, the barons are divided among themselves and the militant orders bitter rivals.  As the King tries to chart a course to salvage his Kingdom from certain obliteration, he leans increasingly upon his boyhood friend, Balian d’Ibelin.



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