Category Archives: Myth and Legends

Review: King’s Man

King's Man
King’s Man by Angus Donald
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Authors/Publishers Book Description/Synopsis

The third crusade is over Richard the Lionheart is bound for England. But with all the princes of Europe united against him . . . can the greatest warrior in Christendom make it safely home?
The lion is chained Captured. Bound. Imprisoned. King Richard’s slim hope of salvation rests on one man – a former outlaw, a vengeful earl, a man who scoffs at holy mother church:
Robin Hood For king and country robin and his loyal lieutenant Alan Dale will risk all – from blood-soaked battlefields to deadly assassins – to see the Lionheart restored to his rightful throne.

What Do I Think?

All I need to do now is read the first book in the series and I will know everything?
This story-weaver is fast becoming one of my all time favourites, what is more important I think I have found the successor to Bernard Cornwell’s crown as master story-weaver.

With this the third book in the Outlaw Chronicles, Angus Donald throws you headlong into his medieval world using the formidable account of Alan Dale to escort you through a kingdom of injustice, ardent sex, bloodthirsty battles fought by factual heroes legends and, murderous outlaws.

A true adventure story from a master story-weaver, it took me a couple of days to read this book its a real page turner and the way in which Angus Donald portrays Robin Hood is nothing short of genius he has made him what I always believed a real Robin Hood would have been; a merciless, hard-hearted SOB who will do almost anything for his King. We in reality shouldn’t like him; however his steadfastness and love for each one inside his gang leaves you feeling nothing but admiration for him and his followers from start to end.
I am looking forward to the next book hopefully one in which we see and hear more from Alan Dale’s memories.

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A Review of : Holy Warrior by Angus Donald

Holy Warrior
Holy Warrior by Angus Donald
My rating: 5 of 5 stars


I know I have gone and done it again and read a book out of sequence, I don’t care this was a fantastic story told by a master story-weaver.

Authors/Publishers Book Description/Synopsis

Arrows will fly. Swords will swing. Heroes will fall. Legends will survive. And the Holy Land will never be the same. 1190 AD: Richard the Lionheart has launched his epic crusade to seize Jerusalem from the cruel Saracens. Marching with the vast royal army is Britain’s most famous, most feared, most ferocious warrior: the Outlaw of Nottingham, the Earl of Locksley — Robin Hood himself. With his band of loyal men at his side, Robin cuts a bloody swathe on the brutal journey east. Daring and dangerous, he can outwit and outlast any foe — but the crimson battlefields of the Holy Land are the ultimate proving ground. And within Robin’s camp lurks a traitor — a stealthy enemy determined to slay Christendom’s greatest outlaw before the trumpets fade. Blazingly paced and richly imagined, featuring a cast of unforgettable characters and packed with fast, furious action, Holy Warrior is adventure at its thrilling, white-knuckle best.

What Do I Think?

A story of a real historical figure and a legend what more could I ask for? A lot more and did I get it? Yes I got intrigue, battles, romance, murder, mystery, and a fast paced story that I could not put down and what is more important I think I have found the successor to Bernard Cornwell’s crown as master story-weaver.

Those of you who have read Bernard Cornwell’s Arthurian stories will recognise the set-up of the story being told by the main character who in this story is Alan Dale who in his declining years tells of his youth spent with the legendary bandit Robin Hood. It is a no holds barred account, with the normally portrayed gallant and wayward Robin depicted as a merciless robber baron.

Angus Donald blends in a small amount of subplots with the actual crusade itself so the story becomes a mystery/murder as well as a fast paced historical thriller this story will keep you turning the pages as you want/need to get to the bottom of these sub-plots all the while in your mind’s eye you are taking part in the great pilgrimage which is on the face of it is a correct account of “The Lionheart’s” expedition to free Jerusalem and the story-weaver makes it more real with some outstanding battle scenes.

Angus Donald’s story-weaving is outstanding, fast paced, evocative oh so evocative! you can almost smell the blood, the cities and towns you find yourself empathizing with the characters yes even some of the baddies and nothing detracts from the main plot, this story-weaver keeps you turning the pages so much so that you have finished the book before you know it.

In conclusion I can only say that this is a story I will want to read again and again it is a Boy’s Own Story for Grown-up Boys and Girls, I just can’t wait for the next instalment which is waiting on my bookshelf, the first in the series will just have to wait!

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Review: Tyrant: Storm of Arrows by Christian Cameron

Tyrant: Storm of Arrows
Tyrant: Storm of Arrows by Christian Cameron
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Storm of Arrows, Book 2 of the Tyrant Series by Christian Cameron
After reading Tyrant the first book in this series I was eagerly looking forward to reading this the second in the series, I had quite a long wait though as Pimlico library had to order it in from another of Westminster’s libraries, it was well worth waiting for and I’ll say right now you have just got to read this story from a master story-weaver.
The Book;
Kineas, the Athenian cavalry commander, has come a long way since being dismissed from the army of Alexander and vengefully exiled by his own city. Together, his mercenary force and their Scythian allies have defeated a mighty Macedonian army at the Ford of the River God, and his adopted city of Olbia is now free once more. But his destiny will not allow him to enjoy the fruits of victory for long. Far to the east, at the farthest edge of the Sea of Grass, Alexander is threatening to crush the Scythian hordes once and for all. The Lady Srayanka of the Cruel Hands, the Scythian warrior-princess who spurned a king’s love to be at Kineas’ side, is pledged to take her tribe east to help stop ‘the monster’ – and Kineas knows he has no choice but to follow, even if it means embracing the violent death in battle that he has seen prefigured in countless dreams. But long before he can confront the might of Alexander’s army alongside his beloved Srayanka, he must undertake an epic journey, of breathtaking daring, taking an army through hundreds of miles of hostile terrain – towards his own appointment with fate.
Christian Cameron takes up for the second time his story of Kineas, the battle-scarred cavalryman and his band of brothers in “Storm of Arrows”.
And if Kineas’ earlier trial and tribulations were not hard enough, he now has to march his little band of soldiers from the Black sea to the Caspian sea, and then to sail across the Caspian sea, furthermore they travel further to the Oxus river, all this to help the Scythians fight against Alexander of Macedon, who he once served.
Christian Cameron has met the difficulties that a venture like this involves and integrates it into his story with no effort at all. He also manages to chronicle quite a few of the characters in Kineas’ band of brothers.
He draws attention to the perils of life in the ancient world of Greece and Asia, a true historian he uses his knowledge of this period to emphasise how life was and bring us closer to his characters especially those of Kineas and Srayanka.
The images of the sea of grass are intense; and he illustrates that this is not just an embellished experience for Kineas, but also for me and all who read this story.
This story is a grand continuation to Tyrant we find out more about the characters and we are encouraged to feel at home in their story, a story powerful and colourful, so once again I find myself telling you that if It’s an absorbing read one in which you rapidly lose track of time, full of intrigue, war, love, and the struggle of men and women to survive against all odds, then read it I promise you won’ be disappointed

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Review: King Arthur: Dragons Child by M. K Hume

King Arthur: Dragons Child
King Arthur: Dragons Child by M. K. Hume
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I have read and enjoyed Bernard Cornwell‘s Arthurian stories and Mary Stewart’s somewhat whimsical tales of Arthurian Legend. However I have to declare that M. K. Hume’s Arthurian legend is a superb unorthodox account of one of the most treasured of British legends.
This tale includes all the time-honoured elements of this legend but this weaver of tales presents us with an original, unsentimental and most crucially a quite plausible tale.
I’m not saying it’s perfect it’s different, a bit darker and if you want to read of Arthur of the Britons beneath the customary legend then M. K. Hume has given us that choice.
I have placed M. K. Hume on my favourite authors list; I find that her style of weaving a story is somewhat distinctive and brimming with detail and creativity. Her talent to place images of bloody battle scenes in your head and then to explain the subtle involvements in her characters interactions is simply inspirational, furthermore if you are searching for a story weaver who can give you images of bloody battles you won’t be let down.
Anyhow to the book;
Uther Pendragon, High King of Britain, is dying. As he weakens, Britain is being torn apart by the squabbling of kings. Only one man can bring them together. This is the legend of Artorex, the man destined to be King Arthur. Artorex, tall for his years, is growing up in the household of Lord Ector. Artorex was sent here by the Bishop of Glastonbury when he was but a babe in arms and, although his parentage is unknown, life has been unremarkable. That is, until the arrival of three men who arrange for him to be trained in the skills of the warrior; blade and shield, horse and fire; pain and bravery. By the time the men return, Artorex is both a father and a warrior — and married to Lady Gallia. The country is in a desperate state — Londinium is about to fall to the Saxons and Artorex is needed to help fight their advance. But to do so, he must leave his wife and family in the care of others. In an act of appalling treachery, they are slaughtered. But despite his terrible grief, Artorex’s destiny is set. He launches into a campaign of battle against the Saxon hordes, earning himself the trust of all men, and proving himself to be the only worthy successor to Uther. But Uther cannot accept Artorex’s role and hides his sword and crown. If Artorex is to unite the kings and fulfil his destiny, he needs the weapon destined to be worn by the High King of the Britons. Can he find the embittered Uther’s hiding place? The future of Britain is at stake
Dragon’s Child is the first book of the King Arthur trilogy and covers Artorex’s childhood and early adulthood up to the time when he discovers Uther’s crown and sword and is crowned High King and I find myself looking forward to the next two in this trilogy.

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