An epic and cinematic book focused on a medieval duel to end all duels. When one Knight accuses another of assaulting his wife, lives and honor codes are laid on the line.
In the midst of the devastating Hundred Years’ War between France and England, Jean de Carrouges, a Norman knight fresh from combat in Scotland, returns home to yet another deadly threat. His wife, Marguerite, has accused squire Jacques Le Gris of rape. A deadlocked court decrees a “trial by combat” between the two men that also leaves Marguerite’s fate in the balance. For if her husband loses the duel, she will be put to death as a false accuser.
While enemy troops pillage the land, and rebellion and plague threaten the lives of all, Carrouges and Le Gris meet in full armor on a walled field in Paris. What follows is a fierce duel, the final one sanctioned by governing powers, before a massive crowd that includes the teenage King Charles VI, during which both combatants are wounded—but only one fatally.