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The lost book of the Grail, or, A visitor's guide to Barchester Cathedral
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Fiction/Biography Profile
Arthur Prescott (Male), College professor, British, Loves the Barchester Cathedral library; appalled by modern technology
Bethany Davis (Female), American, Tries to digitize the library's manuscripts;
Search for fame and fortune
Time Period
2000s -- 21st century
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  Library Journal Review

Arthur Prescott has been schooled by his grandfather in Arthurian tales and the search for the Holy Grail. Legend has it that the Grail was brought to England by an early Christian disciple and that Arthur believes it might be hidden in Barchester. He does his research in the Barchester cathedral library, which he has come to think of it as his own, and is shocked when Bethany Davis appears. This energetic and annoying American has come to digitize the manuscript collection, but her interest in Grail literature makes Arthur suspicious of her motives. Meanwhile, the cathedral faces some daunting maintenance issues that may require the sale of the manuscript collection. It seems only a miracle can save the library. Set in the town of Barchester-made famous by Anthony Trollope in the 19th century-Lovett's (The Bookman's Tale) latest novel juxtaposes scenes from the present with the story of the secrets hidden in Barchester from ancient times forward. The plot twists and turns make for entertaining listening. Well read by Charles Armstrong, whose charming voices give life to the characters. VERDICT Listeners who enjoy mystery, Grail-related fiction, and Trollope will enjoy this book. ["Highly recommended for bibliophiles, historical fiction fans, and all who enjoy a solid literary mystery": LJ 2/1/17 starred review of the Viking hc.]-Joanna Burkhardt, Univ. of Rhode Island Libs., Providence © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

  Publishers Weekly Review

Diffident Arthur Prescott, the endearing hero of this thoroughly enjoyable novel from bestseller Lovett (The Bookman's Tale), has chosen to teach at the University of Barchester, a backwater institution, because he grew up in Barchester (yes, Anthony Trollope's cathedral city, as Lovett admits in an author's note). A junior lecturer who's fond of P.G. Wodehouse, Arthur finds his values at odds with those of many of his colleagues, who prefer teaching seminars on J.K. Rowling rather than Shakespeare. His life is upended by the arrival of an attractive American, Bethany Davis, who has the job of digitizing the local cathedral's ancient manuscripts, and whom he fears threatens his own private quest for the location of the Holy Grail. Bethany gradually brings Arthur out of his emotional shell, and the two become research partners. The light tone (at one point, Arthur, Bethany, and some allies are described as having read enough classic mysteries "that they had no trouble concocting an unnecessarily complicated plan" for a well-intentioned theft) blends well with the clever academic sleuthing. Agent: Anna Worrall, Gernert Co. (Mar.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
From the New York Times bestselling author of The Bookman's Tale comes a new novel about an obsessive bibliophile's quest through time to discover a missing manuscript, the unknown history of an English Cathedral, and the secret of the Holy Grail<br> <br> Arthur Prescott is happiest when surrounded by the ancient books and manuscripts of the Barchester Cathedral library. Increasingly, he feels like a fish out of water among the concrete buildings of the University of Barchester, where he works as an English professor. His one respite is his time spent nestled in the library, nurturing his secret obsession with the Holy Grail and researching his perennially unfinished guidebook to the medieval cathedral.<br> <br> But when a beautiful young American named Bethany Davis arrives in Barchester charged with the task of digitizing the library's manuscripts, Arthur's tranquility is broken. Appalled by the threat modern technology poses to the library he loves, he sets out to thwart Bethany, only to find in her a kindred spirit with a similar love for knowledge and books--and a fellow Grail fanatic.<br> <br> Bethany soon joins Arthur in a quest to find the lost Book of Ewolda, the ancient manuscript telling the story of the cathedral's founder. And when the future of the cathedral itself is threatened, Arthur and Bethany's search takes on grave importance, leading the pair to discover secrets about the cathedral, about the Grail, and about themselves.<br> <br> "Lovett's unique work combines literary and historical research with classic elements of cozy mysteries, classic love stories, and exciting adventure tales to create a true genre-blending masterpiece. At once funny, heartwarming, and suspenseful, The Lost Book of the Grail has something for every kind of reader, and every kind of book-lover, alike. " -- Bustle
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