Senator Bill Rotherwood has just lost the Democratic nomination — his dream of becoming President lies in tatters. His campaign manager tells him it’s time for the political baton to be passed down a generation, to his son, Will. A Harvard graduate and decorated soldier, he has all the credentials, but there’s a snag. Will hates politics — he just wants to write and spend time with his newfound love, Rowena, a junior intern in his father’s campaign office.
But Will has a dark secret — one that his father uses to force his son to bend to his will. He sends Will away to stand for Congress. As Will stands on the platform of the train station Rowena appears. She gives him a book: Ivanhoe, by Sir Walter Scott.
On the train Will falls asleep reading the book. Some time later he awakes with a start. He finds himself alone in the bleak darkness of a desolate and eerie new landscape. He calls into the night for signs of life. From the darkness emerges a Knight on horseback — the beast rears, and down steps an enormous man clad from head to toe in dirty, rusting, pitted armour, claiming to be King Richard — the Lionheart. Will is dumbfounded — who can this madman be?
And so begins an adventure in which, in order to find his way home, Will has to undertake a perilous journey of discovery — about the nature of courage; about women and the true meaning of love; about standing up for what is right in a cruel and unfair world. His ‘rites of passage’ quest brings him into conflict with the scheming Norman knights of the Order of Templars, Bois Guilbert and De Bracy — murderous trained killers who snuff out lives as carelessly as they would candles.
Against a backdrop of the tensions between the native Saxons and the occupying Norman army, Will must learn the arts of knighthood and courtly love. From the Grand Tournament of Ashby-de-la-Zouch to the dungeons of Torquilstone, he discovers that facing evil has a terrible price, and that women are complex and confusing creatures!
Will is catapulted into a medieval world of English political intrigue; a world of extreme violence where a man’s word is his oath; a world where an innocent kiss amounts to a proposal of marriage. Compared to what he finds here politics back home is a kindergarten.
Guided by Richard the Lionheart, led astray by the anarchic jester Wamba and his swineherd sidekick, Gurth, Will learns how to be a friend, a lover, a son, a man. Along the way he finds his moral compass, his sense of adventure and his appetite for life.
And so Will is thrown into another world, another time, and his only way back home is to reconnect with his inner hero!