Robert Shea's All Things Are Lights has a snippet of prose at the beginning, a kind of overture, that I'd like to reproduce here:
“How much jousting have you done?”
“A little,” replied the young troubadour.
“A little!” the Templar said ironically. “In tournaments all over Europe, Count Amalric has bested hundreds of knights. Many times he has killed men. Of course, it is against the rules. But he is a master at making it look like an accident.” He looked at Roland with an almost fatherly kindness. “Indeed, Messire, the best advice I could give you would be not to enter the tournament at all.”
Roland laughed. “Such cautious advice from a Templar?”
“We fight for God, Messire. Have you as great a motive?”
“Yes, I do,” said Roland, seeing Nicolette’s eyes shining in the darkness before him. “I fight for love.”
The copyright owner, Mike Shea, has released the book under the Creative Commons license. You can purchase a copy from Amazon in Kindle format, buy a paper book at the same link (used copies are cheap) or download it for free; links for downloading are here and here.
All Things Are Lights is a historical novel of the Middle Ages. It's very straightforward, very different in style from Illuminatus! although I have labeled it a "thematic prequel" to Illuminatus! because it has many of the same concerns. You'll learn a lot about history, secret societies and courtly love if you read it, although it's possible you'll be too caught up in poor Roland's girl problems and survival problems to pay attention to all of those details. It would make a good movie or miniseries.