Matthew Kneale 
ISBN: 978-1786492371 
Atlantic Books 2020 
Hardback 344 pp £16.99 
Pastoral Review bookshop £15.30 

Despite the restrictions on travel during these months of pandemic, the interest and fascination with the idea of pilgrimage has not waned, even if many of these pilgrimages are by necessity virtual rather than actual. In a time when journeys are often beset with difficulty, reading about a very different and much more dangerous experience of travel may not be a bad thing.  

Matthew Kneale’s latest novel uses a familiar format, the tales that a motley crowd of pilgrims tell each other as they are on their way to their destination, tales perhaps of the many and varied reasons why they set out in the first place and what they are seeking to find. Among those journeying to Rome in 1289 is Tom son of Tom who seeks to atone for the death of his much beloved cat and other things besides.

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