AD 642. Anglo-Saxon Britain. A gripping, action-packed historical thriller and the fifth instalment in the Bernicia Chronicles. Perfect for fans of Bernard Cornwell.
Oswald has reigned over Northumbria for eight years and Beobrand has led the king to ever greater victories. Rewarded for his fealty and prowess in battle, Beobrand is now a wealthy warlord, with a sizable warband. Tales of Beobrand’s fearsome black-shielded warriors and the great treasure he has amassed are told throughout the halls of the land.
Many are the kings who bow to Oswald. And yet there are those who look upon his realm with a covetous eye. And there is one ruler who will never kneel before him.
When Penda of Mercia, the great killer of kings, invades Northumbria, Beobrand is once more called upon to stand in an epic battle where the blood of many will be shed in defence of the kingdom.
But in this climactic clash between the pagan Penda and the Christian Oswald there is much more at stake than sovereignty. This is a battle for the very souls of the people of Albion.
Ok, I went into this book blind as a bat. I had no clue this was book number five (5) in a series. To be honest, I would have never read this until I read the first four (4) books. I never feel that I can give a good review without reading the entire series. I still feel that since I do not know the entire backstory of the characters I can not give a review of the story line since I do not know what happened beyond the hints that the author gave in this book.
For what I can tell you though, is this book was quite interesting though there were parts that left me confused though I think that they would have been cleared up if I had read the first four (4) books. The author has researched his subject and the story line does make me want to read the first four (4) books.
I enjoyed the characters and they were well written. Though I think there is a love triangle or something that is going on between the wives of the leaders, but again I am not sure as it would be in the back story. You can read this book as a stand alone, but if you are anything like me then you may get confused with some of the characters reactions and attitude with each other.
If you like historical fiction then I do recommend the book, but I would start with the first one before this one. The reading order goes:
- The Serpent Sword (The Serpent Sword (Bernicia Chronicles #1)
- The Cross and the Curse (Bernicia Chronicles #2)
- Blood and Blade (Bernicia Chronicles #3)
- Killer of Kings (Bernicia Chronicles #4)
- Kin of Cain: A Short Bernicia Tale (Bernicia Chronicles)
I would read these before reading this one. That way you know what is going on in the back story and how the characters relate to each other.
I received this book from Net Galley for this review.