Ancient history does fascinate me so this tale about a lost Saxon child in the time of after Rome inhabited Britannia piqued my interest. I thank Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours for sending me a copy of The Saxon Spears by James Calbraith at no charge for my honest review.
About The Saxon Spears:
The old world is burning down
A hero will rise from its ASH.
Thirty years have passed since Britannia voted to throw off the Roman yoke. Now, the old world crumbles.
Pirates roam the seas, bandits threaten the highways, and barbarian refugees land at Britannia’s shores, uninvited. The rich profit from the chaos, while the poor suffer. A new Dark Age is approaching – but all is not lost.
Ash is a Seaborn, a Saxon child found on the beach with nothing but a precious stone at his neck and a memory of a distant war from which his people have fled. Raised on the estate of a Briton nobleman, trained in warfare and ancient knowledge, he soon becomes embroiled in the machinations and intrigues at the court of Wortigern, the Dux of Londinium, a struggle that is about to determine the future of all Britannia.
A child of Saxon blood, an heir to Roman family, his is a destiny like no other: to join the two races and forge a new world from the ruins of the old.
The Saxon Spears is the first volume of the Song of Ash saga, perfect for fans of Bernard Cornwell’s “The Last Kingdom” series, Simon Scarrow and Conn Iggulden.
About the Author:
James Calbraith is a Poland-born British writer, foodie and traveller.
Growing up in communist Poland on a diet of powdered milk, Lord of the Rings and soviet science-fiction, he had his first story published at the ripe age of eight. After years of bouncing around Polish universities, he moved to London in 2007 and started writing in English. His debut historical fantasy novel, “The Shadow of Black Wings”, has reached ABNA semi-finals. It was published in July 2012 and hit the Historical Fantasy and Alternate History bestseller lists on Amazon US & UK.
The Saxon Spears opens to a scene of tumult as a young man remembers his early years but he isn’t sure if the memories are real or due to the stories he’s been told. He is a slave and all he has left from this old life he remembers is rune that he wears around his neck. He is living with old servants who tolerate his presence but he finds he wants more. This young boy has been given the name Ash and he sets out to make his future brighter.
Soon Ash is learning to read and write with the master’s son and they become like brothers. He proves to be adept as a warrior and takes this to be his calling. The politics of the time are complicated and his heritage is fraught as Ash has to decide if he is going to follow the path of his adopted family or of the family of his birth.
This was such a richly detailed book full of really great characters. A little gory at times – we are dealing with war and such but nothing super disgusting. I found myself wanting to know more about the time period – as much as I love English history I’m really lacking in my knowledge of these early days. The early tribes have such fascinating stories attached to them and Mr. Calbraith does a wonderful job of bringing the time period alive. There is another book coming as a follow up to this one and I will look forward to reading it.
During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a paperback copy of The Saxon Spears! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.
– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on March 6th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
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