Monthly Archives: June 2012

Transworld Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

Transworld Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

http://www.historytellers.co.uk/blog/?p=477

Love reading?

Love historical fiction?

Love free hardbacks?

Then this challenge is for you…

All you have to do is pick four titles out of this amazing collection of hardbacks that you would like to read and contact Elizabeth Swain either via email e.swain@transworld-publishers.co.uk or on twitter @EKSwain

Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

When she has your four selections, she will send you the first of your choices and once a review has been posted, she will send you the second and so on.

So send over the following to her if you would like to participate:

  • Your name
  • Blog URL & details (if you have one)
  • Twitter handle (if you have one)
  •  Top four books of choice (please note the publication dates of each title in brackets as there may be a little wait for your book to arrive)

Do let her know when your reviews are up so she can let the author’s know and if you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch!

(Thanks, Elizabeth)

READING CHALLENGE ENDS ON 31ST JULY

So far in my own bash at the challenge i have read and reviewed the below:

(so dont miss out, this is a great chance to read some fantastic books and say how much you love them)

The Bleeding Land : Gile Kristian

England 1642: a nation divided. England is at war with itself. King Charles and Parliament each gather soldiers to their banners. Across the land men prepare to fight for their religious and political ideals. Civil war has begun. A family ripped asunder. The Rivers are landed gentry, and tradition dictates that their allegiance is to the King. Sir Francis’ loyalty to the crown and his desire to protect his family will test them all. As the men march to war, so the women are left to defend their home against a ruthless enemy. Just as Edmund, the eldest of Sir Francis’ sons, will do his duty, so his brother Tom will turn his back on all he once believed in… A war that will change everything. From the raising of the King’s Standard at Nottingham to the butchery and blood of Edgehill, Edmund and Tom Rivers will each learn of honour, sacrifice, hatred and betrayal as they follow their chosen paths through this most savage of wars.

Review

The Bleeding Land

The Bleeding Land by Giles Krisitan is very different from his previous series the Raven. This book may be set at the outset of a bloody and violent Civil War and have Raven fans slavering for blood, but the book is very much about family, familial bonds and how they become tested strained and broken by War (especially Civil War). ….dont worry there are battles.

There are some great insights into the relationships between the Brothers Tom and Mun and also the strain that exists in any time period between a father and his sons who are bordering adulthood, and asserting their opinions and thoughts over the opinions and thoughts of the man who has guided them to maturity. Add in the devoted sister and the strength of the mother, who is the backbone of every family, especially in a time of War when she has to run and guide the family and this alone is a tale well worth reading.

But that is only a single facet of the Bleeding Land, because as the title suggests, religion and politics are tearing the land apart and so into this normal family mix you can throw 17th Century life, society/ hierarchy, politics and family dynamics, and a country tearing itself apart over Monarchist power v Parliament, religion and as some might see it a popular uprising (English Revolution).

In this tumultuous backdrop Giles introduces us to and weaves us into the lives of the Rivers in such a way that you feel part of the family, the hurts the trials the passions, the success and the failures they belong to you the reader as much as the characters. I have read quite a few civil war titles and the only one before now not to bore me was Plague Child by Peter Ransley. Both that title and this one took the civil war to a new place for me, removed it from the boring drone of a History teacher who hated the subject, and who’s voice had stuck with me for anything to do with that period, to something new exciting, something relevant to me my family and my history and something i want to learn about.

Any book and writer that can achieve the above for me has a huge success on the cards, i just wish that Giles was up to 2 books a year, the thought of an entire year before the next in the series is a hard pill to swallow.

I highly recommend this book, for writing skill, story telling and because its so different in style from the Brilliant Raven series, and yet also a Brilliant read, not many authors can pull off a change in period and style and do it so well. A rare talent.

The Last Caesar: Henry Venmore-Rowland

And what is “The Last Caesar” about?

AD 68. The tyrant emperor Nero has no son and no heir. Suddenly there’s the very real possibility that Rome might become a republic once more. But the ambitions of a few are about to bring corruption, chaos and untold bloodshed to the many. Among them is a hero of the campaign against Boudicca, Aulus Caecina Severus. Caught up in a conspiracy to overthrow Caesar’s dynasty, he commits treason, raises a rebellion, faces torture and intrigue – all supposedly for the good of Rome. The boundary between the good of Rome and self preservation is far from clear, and keeping to the dangerous path he’s chosen requires all Severus’ skills as a cunning soldier and increasingly deft politician. And so Severus looks back on the dark and dangerous time history knows as the Year of the Four Emperors, and the part he played – for good or ill – in plunging the mighty Roman empire into anarchy and civil war…

Review of the book:

This is a book I had been eagerly awaiting for, for a few months. The story is set in AD68 leading into AD69 the year of 4 Emperors an era the more you look at it the more amazed I am that it has not been written about. ” The Year of the Four Emperors was a year in the history of the Roman Empire, AD 69, in which four emperors ruled in a remarkable succession. These four emperors were Galba, Otho, Vitellius and Vespasian.” When ever you get a debut author there is always some trepidation in the purchase. Is this person good enough for my money, how does he stack up against the giants of the genre? is he the next Christian Cameron, Conn Iggulden, Ben Kane, Anthony Riches, Simon Scarrow, Douglas Jackson etc? All authors at the top of their game, but with unique differing styles. So how did Henry do?

I will admit that at first I was worried, the style is very modern, there are no pretences to Latin vernacular in the book, this is very much told for a modern audience by a modern writer, and I know this is going to jar with a section of the historical fiction buyers market.

BUT:

The book quickly picks up its pace and the characters hit their stride very very fast. Its clear that the author knows his Romans and knows his locations. What you have to apply to the book is who wrote it, The author is 21, and wrote the majority at the age of 19, the list of established authors above are *cough* a little older *cough*. The age difference is apparent in the writing because this book is chock full of enthusiasm, a sort of breathless excitement at the subject and the era, and it soon comes across to the reader and sweeps you along with the plot.

I found Caecina not only a likeable main character but someone who I could personally relate too, Totavalas the slave, a character that I think will really come to the fore in the next book, I just wish he had been a little more in the slave mold, I don’t think he would have lasted long with many masters with his sardonic cocky attitude, but you have to accept these character types as part of the enthusiastic pace of the book and the writing slant of Henry Venmore-Rowland.

Is there some innocent naivety to the writing? Yes for me there was, but a naivety of the market its being sold to.  This genre is littered with people who will crucify an author for the cover art (usually they have little input into the cover, this article from Gollancz gives some very interesting insight into the cover process http://www.gollancz.co.uk/2012/03/empire-of-the-saviours-cover-reveal-and-competition/ ) , they will also simply throw their arms in the air in mock / feigned and sometimes real disgust at the wrong buttons on a jacket, or a pilum being called a spear etc. Its a shame that so many readers cannot see the joy in a story well told with enthusiasm.

Henry’s writing will age and change and improve, how could it not, this is a person aged 21 at the start of a great and I hope long writing journey. Think on this, how many of the great authors named earlier were published at such a young age? None, and their books get better and better as they spend time in the writing world, learning from the editor and the fans and their peers, and become more widely traveled and life experienced, I’m a big believer in the ” A man is literally what he thinks, his character being the complete sum of all his thoughts”: King James bible, the more we age the deeper and more rounded the thoughts.

This book and the writing style is fresh, it felt like a blending of Historical Fiction and Action Thriller, both genres I love to read. It is one of those books that gives you hope in the future of the genre, if the publishing world can keep discovering talent like this then we shall never lack for great books and great stories.

So the big question, Do I recommend this book, should you part with your hard earned cash?

Yes, very much recommended, We need to support new talent and as readers review and feedback and help this great talent grow, do our part as the reader, and I’m sure the author and the publisher will do theirs and give us many more fantastic reads, especially from Henry.

(Parm)

And what is “The Last Caesar” about?

AD 68. The tyrant emperor Nero has no son and no heir. Suddenly there’s the very real possibility that Rome might become a republic once more. But the ambitions of a few are about to bring corruption, chaos and untold bloodshed to the many. Among them is a hero of the campaign against Boudicca, Aulus Caecina Severus. Caught up in a conspiracy to overthrow Caesar’s dynasty, he commits treason, raises a rebellion, faces torture and intrigue – all supposedly for the good of Rome. The boundary between the good of Rome and self preservation is far from clear, and keeping to the dangerous path he’s chosen requires all Severus’ skills as a cunning soldier and increasingly deft politician. And so Severus looks back on the dark and dangerous time history knows as the Year of the Four Emperors, and the part he played – for good or ill – in plunging the mighty Roman empire into anarchy and civil war…

Review of the book:

This is a book I had been eagerly awaiting for, for a few months. The story is set in AD68 leading into AD69 the year of 4 Emperors an era the more you look at it the more amazed I am that it has not been written about. ” The Year of the Four Emperors was a year in the history of the Roman Empire, AD 69, in which four emperors ruled in a remarkable succession. These four emperors were Galba, Otho, Vitellius and Vespasian.” When ever you get a debut author there is always some trepidation in the purchase. Is this person good enough for my money, how does he stack up against the giants of the genre? is he the next Christian Cameron, Conn Iggulden, Ben Kane, Anthony Riches, Simon Scarrow, Douglas Jackson etc? All authors at the top of their game, but with unique differing styles. So how did Henry do?

I will admit that at first I was worried, the style is very modern, there are no pretences to Latin vernacular in the book, this is very much told for a modern audience by a modern writer, and I know this is going to jar with a section of the historical fiction buyers market.

BUT:

The book quickly picks up its pace and the characters hit their stride very very fast. Its clear that the author knows his Romans and knows his locations. What you have to apply to the book is who wrote it, The author is 21, and wrote the majority at the age of 19, the list of established authors above are *cough* a little older *cough*. The age difference is apparent in the writing because this book is chock full of enthusiasm, a sort of breathless excitement at the subject and the era, and it soon comes across to the reader and sweeps you along with the plot.

I found Caecina not only a likeable main character but someone who I could personally relate too, Totavalas the slave, a character that I think will really come to the fore in the next book, I just wish he had been a little more in the slave mold, I don’t think he would have lasted long with many masters with his sardonic cocky attitude, but you have to accept these character types as part of the enthusiastic pace of the book and the writing slant of Henry Venmore-Rowland.

Is there some innocent naivety to the writing? Yes for me there was, but a naivety of the market its being sold to.  This genre is littered with people who will crucify an author for the cover art (usually they have little input into the cover, this article from Gollancz gives some very interesting insight into the cover process http://www.gollancz.co.uk/2012/03/empire-of-the-saviours-cover-reveal-and-competition/ ) , they will also simply throw their arms in the air in mock / feigned and sometimes real disgust at the wrong buttons on a jacket, or a pilum being called a spear etc. Its a shame that so many readers cannot see the joy in a story well told with enthusiasm.

Henry’s writing will age and change and improve, how could it not, this is a person aged 21 at the start of a great and I hope long writing journey. Think on this, how many of the great authors named earlier were published at such a young age? None, and their books get better and better as they spend time in the writing world, learning from the editor and the fans and their peers, and become more widely traveled and life experienced, I’m a big believer in the ” A man is literally what he thinks, his character being the complete sum of all his thoughts”: King James bible, the more we age the deeper and more rounded the thoughts.

This book and the writing style is fresh, it felt like a blending of Historical Fiction and Action Thriller, both genres I love to read. It is one of those books that gives you hope in the future of the genre, if the publishing world can keep discovering talent like this then we shall never lack for great books and great stories.

So the big question, Do I recommend this book, should you part with your hard earned cash?

Yes, very much recommended, We need to support new talent and as readers review and feedback and help this great talent grow, do our part as the reader, and I’m sure the author and the publisher will do theirs and give us many more fantastic reads, especially from Henry.

(Parm)

Eagle of the Twelfth: M C Scott

Book Description

Throughout the Roman Army, the Twelfth Legion is notorious for its ill fortune. It faces the harshest of postings, the toughest of campaigns, the most vicious of opponents. For one young man, Demalion of Macedon, joining it will be a baptism of fire. And yet, amid all of the violence and savagery of his life as a legionary, he realises he has discovered a vocation – as a soldier and a leader of men. He has come to love the Twelfth and all the bloody-minded, dark-hearted soldiers he calls his brothers.

But all that he cares about is ripped from him when, during the brutal Judaean campaign, the Hebrew army inflict a catastrophic defeat upon the legion – not only decimating their ranks, but taking away their soul – the eagle.

There is one final chance to save the legion’s honour – to steal back the eagle. To do that, Demalion and his legionnaries must go undercover into the city of Jerusalem, into the very heart of their enemy, where discovery will mean the worst of deaths, if they are to recover their pride.

And that, in itself, is a task worthy only of heroes.

Review:

There are many Roman era Historical Fiction books and authors on the market now and they explore differing facets of the Roman world and the roman army. What the majority of them have in common is that the culmination, the pièce de résistance of the story is the great battle, the pulling together of all the threads so the hero wins, or survives to fight another day over coming terrible odds. All this is what most of us readers want in a novel, something of great power and motivation, coupled with great story telling and that touch of escapism to take us beyond the borders of our lives into another time and place, to maybe give us a little piece of that heroic feeling.

With Manda Scott’s Eagle of the Twelfth you get all the usual accomplished parts of a roman novel, but then you get something more, something that I always felt I got touches of in Simon Scarrow’s early eagle novels, but In Manda’s to a much greater depth. You get to be the hero, to feel the heroes thoughts, cares concerns, you ride along in his skin rather than as an observer, but you experience it as a real person doing heroic deeds rather than a prefab hero.

Eagle of the Twelfth is not just Manda’s triumph, Demalion of Macedon is her triumph.

For those readers who are expecting a swords and sandals heroic ride with a Scarrow or Riches style swagger, its there, but expect also for the legion to finally be stripped back to its real warts and all self. Because Eagle of the Twelfth gives an expose on just why these men conquered the world, how they were so tough, why they fought so much as a unit and how they used that comradeship, that family of the eagle to survive the cold the heat, the rain the hell of war, Life in the ancient world.

The cover of the book proudly states on a sticker, “as good as Conn Iggulden or your money back”, And I have to say Conn in the case of this book, I think Manda has you beat (well maybe not Wolf of the Plains) but Rome for Rome.

This book captures not just the epic scale of Rome’s legions, but its core, its heart, its soul, its very essence, what made the men tick.

This book is going right up there as one of my best for 2012 Very Highly recommended, not just for those who like Historical fiction, but for those whole love great fiction told by a great story teller.

(Parm)

James Holland: Hellfire

Product Description (from back of book)

August, 1942.North Africa. The desert war hangs in the balance. Although their retreat has finally been halted, morale in the British Army is at rock bottom. When the commander of the Eighth Army, General Gott, is killed, it seems that foul play is at work. An impenetrable Axis spy circuit could be compromising any hope the Allies have of stemming the Nazi tide. Jack Tanner, recovering from wounds in a Cairo hospital, is astonished to receive a battlefield commission which will propel him into a very different world when he returns to action. Fit once more, he finds himself facing the full onslaught of Rommel’s latest offensive. In its aftermath, Tanner and his trusty sidekick Sykes are recruited to work behind the Axis lines in a desperate attempt to take the fight to the Nazis. But the murky world of subterfuge, deceit and murder they find themselves in is a million miles away from the certainties of the battlefield and somehow they must discover who they can trust in the cat-and-mouse world of counter-espionage.

Review

There are very few writers producing anything of note for WW2 fiction reader at present, there are certainly very few who are doing it this well (Guy Saville and James Delingpole being the only notable exceptions) As usual the books are well written with a pace that picks the reader up and carries you along with our heroes, the action is real and visceral, its written with a real passion for the subject and the characters. But with all this it still contains that element of boys own adventure that readers of Commando, Victor and Battle would have come to love and expect from their war stories, Heroes can still be Heroes here without all the sordid parts of the real world crowing in, leaving it real but idealistic at the same time. Another excellent story from James Holland Recommended (Parm)
My Reviews still to do:

James Wilde: Hereward: The Devils Army

1067 – the Battle of Hastings has been lost and the iron gauntlet of William the Bastard slowly throttles the life out of England. The length and breadth of the country, villages are burned and men, women and children put to the sword as the brutal new King attempts to impose his cruel will upon the unruly nation.
One man stands in the way of the Norman duke’s savage campaign: Hereward, warrior, master tactician, and the last hope of the English. As adept at slaughter as the imposter who sits on the throne, he has vowed to meet blood with blood and fire with fire.
In a Fenlands fortress of water and wild wood, his resistance is simmering. His army of outcasts grows by the day – a devil’s army that comes with the mists and the night and leaves only bones in its wake.
But William is not one to be cowed. Under the command of his ruthless deputy, Ivo Taillebois – known and feared as ‘the Butcher’ – the invaders will do whatever it takes to crush these rebels, even if it means burning all England to the ground.
Here then is the tale of the bloodiest rebellion England has ever known…the beginning of an epic battle that will echo down the years…

Review:
When i first started Hereward: Devils Army it was looking forward to what should be a great read. Book one Hereward was a fantastic book (see review http://www.amazon.co.uk/Hereward-eboo… )
So it was very worrying to start the book and struggle to get into it.
So I took a step back remembering that I know you have to be in the right frame of mind for every author and every book you read. Its why my TBR pile is so fluid. On reflection I think I pushed myself into this one and wasn’t ready, I was more conscious of the publication date than being ready for it. (I had just finished 4 Historical Fiction books back to back and I usually take a breather in-between)….
After a particularly light hearted cheesy thriller I picked Hereward The Devils army up again, and it clicked immediately, how? why had i struggled?
All I know is that instantly I was submerged in what is a splendidly visual piece of writing. So many sights sounds and smells written so well you can experience them all intimately.  The characters grow again from book 1 to book 2, taking you further and further into life under the cosh of William Duke of Normandy. The side plots are all so enticing and aided the plot by giving the reader a much wider view of the realm at the time, rather than just the immediacy of Ely’s and Hereward’s experience.
When the threads finally pull together towards the final chapters its with such a sudden immediate increase in pace you really just cannot put the book down, even if you wanted too and the story is breath taking in its action, pace and horror.
So the worry for a debut author is always can you do it twice, can you repeat the eloquence of book one?
In this case Hell Yes!
Highly recommended
(Parm)

Douglas Jackson: Avenger of Rome

Rome, summer 66AD and Nero’s agents mercilessly hunt down the last survivors of the Piso Conspiracy. Yet, despite purging this viper’s nest with fire and iron, the increasingly unstable young Emperor feels his grip on power weakening. In Judaea, rebels have bested his army and taken an eagle, in Germania, the Rhenus legions agitate for better conditions. In Hispana, his governor plots. But the most dangerous threat is in the east where Rome’s greatest general, Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo, presides over an Empire within an Empire. Is Corbulo preparing to march against Rome and take the purple? Gaius Valerius Verrens, Hero of Rome, is ordered to Antioch with the power of life and death over the soldier he worships. There he finds every man’s hand against him and Corbulo’s eyes not on Rome, but on a new threat from the Parthian King of Kings, Vologases. Outnumbered, Corbulo marches with Valerius at his side into the barren wastes beyond the Tigris, to meet Vologases in a mighty confrontation that will decide the future of the Empire.  In Avenger of Rome, Valerius will face his greatest enemy and his greatest challenge, but neither will be what he believes.

Andrew Swanston: The Kings Spy

Summer, 1643. England is at war with itself. King Charles I has fled London, his negotiations with Parliament in tatters. The country is consumed by bloodshed. For Thomas Hill, a man of letters quietly running a bookshop in the rural town of Romsey, knowledge of the war is limited to the rumours that reach the local inn. When a stranger knocks on his door one night and informs him that the king’s cryptographer has died, everything changes. Aware of Thomas’ background as a mathematician and his expertise in codes and ciphers, the king has summoned him to his court in Oxford. On arrival, Thomas soon discovers that nothing at court is straightforward. There is evidence of a traitor in their midst. Brutal murder follows brutal murder. And when a vital message encrypted with a notoriously unbreakable cipher is intercepted, he must decipher it to reveal the king’s betrayer and prevent the violent death that defeat will surely bring.

See its easy!!

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Michael Arnold: Hunters Rage: August 2nd 2012.

Author: Michael Arnold.

Michael lives in Hampshire with his wife and young son. His childhood holidays were spent visiting castles and battlefields, but his fascination with the civil wars was piqued partly by the fact that his hometown and region of Hampshire are steeped in Civil War history.

Buy it signed: http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/hunters-rage-3279.html

Product Description

Posted to the hostile territory of Dartmoor, Captain Innocent Stryker and his men are attacked by an elite cavalry unit commanded by the formidable Colonel Gabriel Wild and suffer heavy losses. Stryker has already clashed once with Wild, and the Roundhead has sworn to seek his revenge. After the attack, Stryker is faced with the annihilation of his company as he is hounded across the moor, eventually seeking shelter on an isolated tor populated by an enigmatic former priest who harbours no love for the King’s cause. Colonel Wild is assisted in his revenge by Osmyn Hogg, Parliamentarian witch-finder, who shares his own deadly history with Stryker. To save his honour and his life, Stryker must lead his men to glory from the protection of the lonely granite-topped hill. Into this atmosphere of intrigue and danger comes the beautiful but mysterious Cecily Cade. Stryker comes to her aid, unaware that she carries with her special knowledge that may prove the key to Royalist victory.
The battle between Stryker and his old foes takes him from the bleak isolation of Dartmoor, through the war-ravaged lands of southern England and finally to Stratton, where the bloody battle between Cornwall and Devon will decide the fate of the south-west.

Review

I have been fortunate enough to meet Captain Stryker before:

Civil War Chronicles
1. Traitor’s Blood (2010)
2. Devil’s Charge (2011)
3. Hunter’s Rage (2012)
4. Warlord’s Gold (2013)

But this latest adventure (number 3) Hunters Rage for me personally is a step up, as each book in the series appears to have been. Our Hero? if that’s the right word for a man built by and driven by war. Yet a man who believes he is on the right side, a man who really deep down cares for every man under his command, (not that he would show it). I think a “true professional Soldier” is a better title than hero.

Stryker in this tale stumbles across a cache of powder, shot etc and is lucky enough to pull off a daring capture of these goodies. Only his temper and in-built arrogance (and we all have it) gets the better of him and he makes an enemy for life in Colonel Wild. The story that then unfolds is full of twists turns, moments of almost unnoticed heroism, sorrow, sacrifice and brilliant characters.

The cover of the book quotes the Yorkshire times “Stands in comparison with the best of Cornwell” I think that’s wrong, I love the character Sharpe, but I think Stryker is much more complicated and misunderstood. Where Sharpe is a man from the ranks trying to fit in among the Officer class. Stryker doesn’t, he doesn’t really care about that. He cares about doing the job, doing it right, doing it well and bringing his men back alive. he seems to live for the buzz and adrenaline of battle and accept the vagaries of fate that mean you or the man next to you could die any minuet.

As great reads go it’s not a book you will devour in a single sitting, it’s much more complex than that, you need to take your time to savour every single sentence. To appreciate the great and complex characters, to feel the damp of the grass, the cold of the morning and the boom of the guns. This book has the ability to totally immerse you in the English Civil war, in 1643. And having been out on hikes on the moors in the winter months I can attest to the accuracy of the descriptions, the bleak but also magical landscapes.

This book will take you on a ride through an epic period of history, with a band of real men, hard men but honest men and also allow you a glimpse of the not so nice side of war in the guise of witch-finder Hogg.

I really encourage you all to go and buy the book and enjoy the same journey I have just taken. A Journey that leaves me knowing what the Warlords Gold is (book 4)…yet wondering how the hell Stryker and his band of men can stand a chance of getting it back. Mainly it leaves me wanting more, but satisfied to have shared a great if harrowing experience with Stryker.

Very Highly Recommended.

(Parm)

Previous titles

Traitor’s Blood (2010)
(The first book in the Civil War Chronicles series)
A novel by Michael ArnoldOnce seen in the heat of battle, Captain Stryker is never forgotten.   A hardened veteran of the wars in the Low Countries, he has come home to England to   seek revenge on the man who left him for dead and scarred him for life.Stryker is driven by loyalty rather than conviction to serve King Charles’s   cause. He has no truck with aristocracy, preferring the company of a handful   of trusted men, including sometime actor Lancelot Forrester and his   foul-mouthed sergeant, Skellen. But when the existence of a dangerous spy at   the heart of the Royalist establishment is discovered, it is Stryker whom Prince Rupert chooses   to capture the man before he realises the game is up.Lightly armed and with only a handful of men, Stryker must journey across a   country riven by bitterness and beset by marauding bands of soldiers in a   race against time. But unbeknown to Stryker, someone else is also closing in   on his quarry, someone whom Stryker has sworn to kill: Captain Eli Makepeace,   his nemesis, the man who nearly destroyed him . . .

Devil’s Charge (2011)
(The second book in the Civil War Chronicles series)
A novel by Michael ArnoldEngland stands divided: king against Parliament, town   against country, brother against brother.For Captain Stryker, scarred hero of a dozen wars, the rights and wrongs of   the cause mean little. His loyalties are to his own small band of comrades –   and to Queen Henrietta Maria’s beautiful and most deadly agent, Lisette   Gaillard. So when Prince Rupert   entrusts him with a secret mission to discover what has happened to Lisette   and the man she was protecting – a man who could hold the key to Royalist   victory – nothing, not false imprisonment for murder, ambush, a doomed siege   or a lethal religious fanatic will stand in his way.From the bloody rout of Cirencester, to the siege of Lichfield and finally to   the killing fields of Hopton Heath, Michael Arnold brings vividly to life all   the drama and the passion that lay behind the English Civil War.

Buy a signed copy: http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/devils-charge-2623.html

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Nick Brown: Agent of Rome: The Imperial Banner

Nick Brown

Nick Brown

Nick was in Norwich in 1974. A keen reader from a young age, he graduated from Enid Blyton to Douglas Hill and JRR Tolkien, and from  there to Ian Fleming, Tom Clancy and Michael Crichton. After three years studying in Brighton, he travelled to Nepal where he worked at an  orphanage and trekked to Mount Everest. After qualifying as  a history teacher in 2000, he worked for five years in England before  taking up a post at an international school in Warsaw.

Nick had completed a few screenplays and a futuristic thriller before  being inspired to try historical fiction after reading C.J. Sansom’s Dissolution: “Researching the Roman army and life in the third century was a  fascinating but time-consuming project and the book went  through many drafts before arriving at its final form. I had always  intended Cassius to be a somewhat atypical protagonist and when I came  across the research about the Roman ‘secret service’, I knew I’d found  an ideal vocation  for my reluctant hero.”

Recently, most of Nick’s spare time has been spent on the second Agent of Rome novel, but if he’s not writing he might be found at the cinema, in a bar, on a boat, or playing poker.

Review:
I will start this review with the fact that i really enjoyed Siege the first book in this series. The reason i loved it has been carried through to this book and so in my opinion has made it also a great success. The hero Cassius is a great reluctant hero, he doesn’t try to go out there and do great deeds he just either stumbles into them and does his best, or he uses his great deductive skills and intelligence and drops him self right in the middle of all the trouble in the world.
Not since Saylor (Gordianus the Finder) and Davies (Falco) has there been an attempt to have a Roman detective type character, and in the case of Cassius he is a member of the ‘service’ the Frumentarii. The thing is, i found Gordianus the Finder to be a little implausible and Falco to be a bit of a…well caricature, where as Cassius is real, warts and all, young naive, learning on the fly, screwing up on a regular basis and hopefully learning from those mistakes. But also still a product of his patrician background with the underlying arrogance and bigotry that comes with it.
This latest book is told with all of the above, wrapped up in a powerful complex twisty plot that thrills with every page, it kept me up until 2am several nights running. The main character is balanced beautifully with his servant/ slave Simo a closet christian and all round nice guy, and the absolute star of this book Indavara, a young man abused most of his life, yet strong willed and skilled enough to have earned his freedom from the Games, yest still a man flawed (rather than the boring infallible hero).
This is a truly excellent book, definitely not your average swords and Sandals blood fest, a great plot with great characters and still loaded with action.
Highly recommended.
(Parm)
Background on the book:
Praise for AGENT OF ROME: THE SIEGE — : ‘Agent of Rome is a masterful debut from a new author completely at home in this era; the writing is deft, the action swift and bloody and the characters believable and engaging. I look forward greatly to the next one.’ — Manda Scott ‘Once the action kicks off you won’t be able to put it down.’ — Anthony Riches, author of the Empire series ‘Brown’s intelligent and exhilarating story excels in its perfect pace, vivid combat sequences and superb characterisation. The Siege delivers a thrilling coming-of-age adventure with an unlikely but likeable hero whose exploits are set to win an army of fans’ — Lancashire Evening Post ‘Brown promises to be one of the most exciting sword-wielding writers in an ever-popular arena. In this, his debut, his principal is a 19-year-old fresh-faced officer commanding 100 men in defence of a Syrian stronghold against a vastly superior force. There are echoes of Beau Geste in this death-or-glory stand.’ — The Oxford Times ‘The Siege is an excellent debut novel and delivers a thrilling and fascinating coming-of-age adventure’ — Book Gazette ‘Nick Brown has the craft of storytelling at his fingertips … The Siege is a fast-paced and satisfying read’ — Russell Whitfield, author of Gladiatrix

http://www.nickbrownauthor.com/?page_id=243

The link will take you to Nicks web site and the ability to buy signed copies of book 1 The Seige.

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Filed under Historical Fiction

Start planning your book budget now!

So, every year it seems that i find more books and authors worth buying, and even being lucky as i am to get review copies of books i still always buy a signed 1st HB of every book, its why im in so much bother with the wife..

I like to try and plan ahead in the idea i will limit my buying to the best…but i know i will get them all. Some of it is a reminder of what is out when, and some what to go cap in hand for to the lovely publicity people for and when (grin).

So to save you all time and to get some great covers on display early…here you are to share my pain…..

June 2012

Pre-Order

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Agent-Rome-The-Imperial-Banner/dp/1444714880/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pdT2_nS_nC?ie=UTF8&colid=2B72DD7E1SKQI&coliid=I23NJV9U1X4BAG

Pre-Order signed from Goldsboro Books

http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/the-imperial-banner-agent-of-rome-2-3240.html

The Imperial Banner (2012)
(The second book in the Agent of Rome series)
A novel by Nick Brown

Publisher: Hodder Stoughton (7 Jun 2012)

272 AD

The Roman Emperor Aurelian has defeated Queen Zenobia and crushed the Palmyran revolt, but now dark forces threaten a fragile peace.

Faridun’s Banner, hallowed battle standard of the Persian Empire, has fallen into Roman hands and is to be returned to the Persians as part of a crucial peace treaty. But on the eve of the signing the banner is stolen.

Recalled toSyria, imperial agent Cassius Corbulo is charged with recovering the flag. Accompanied by his faithful servant Simo and ex-gladiator bodyguard Indavara, Cassius must journey across the dangerous Syrian desert to the equally perilous streets ofAntioch. He and his companions face ruthless brigands, mysterious cults, merciless assassins and intrigue at every turn. The hunt is on!

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Agent-Rome-The-Imperial-Banner/dp/1444714880/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pdT2_nS_nC?ie=UTF8&colid=2B72DD7E1SKQI&coliid=I23NJV9U1X4BAG

Pre-Order signed from the fantastic Goldsboro Books

http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/whispers-under-ground-rivers-of-london-3-2983.html

Whispers Under Ground (Rivers of London 3)

Ben Aaronovitch

Publisher: Gollancz; Hardback edition (21 Jun 2012)

Product Description

Doctor Who Screenwriter Ben Aaronovitch’s superbly entertaining supernatural crime series has, with its witty one-liners and wonderfully erudite take on London, won a legion of fans in double quick time.

Peter Grant is learning magic fast. And its just as well – he’s already had run ins with the deadly supernatural children of the Thames and a terrifying killer inSoho. Progression in the Police Force is less easy. Especially when you work in a department of two. A department that doesn’t even officially exist. A department that if you did describe it to most people would get you laughed at. And then there’s his love life. The last person he fell for ended up seriously dead. It wasn’t his fault, but still.

Now something horrible is happening in the labyrinth of tunnels that make up the tube system that honeycombs the ancient foundations ofLondon. And delays on the Northern line is the very least of it. Time to call in the Met’s Economic and Specialist Crime Unit 9, aka ‘The Folly’. Time to call in PC Peter Grant, Britains Last Wizard.

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Last-Caesar-Henry-Venmore-Rowland/dp/0593068513/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338548710&sr=1-1

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http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/the-last-caesar-3217.html

The Last Caesar Author: Henry Venmore-Rowland

Published by: Bantam Press

Date Available: 21 June 2012

 

Synopsis

AD 68. The tyrant emperor Nero has no son and no heir.

Suddenly there’s the very real possibility thatRomemight become a republic once more. But the ambitions of a few are about to bring corruption, chaos and untold bloodshed to the many.

Among them is a hero of the campaign against Boudicca, Aulus Caecina Severus. Caught up in a conspiracy to overthrow Caesar’s dynasty, he commits treason, raises a rebellion, faces torture and intrigue – all supposedly for the good ofRome. The boundary between the good of Rome and self preservation is far from clear, and keeping to the dangerous path he’s chosen requires all Severus’ skills as a cunning soldier and increasingly deft politician.

And so Severus looks back on the dark and dangerous time history knows as the Year of the Four Emperors, and the part he played – for good or ill – in plunging the mightyRoman empireinto anarchy and civil war…

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Lord-Slaughter-M-D-Lachlan/dp/0575089679/ref=sr_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338548810&sr=1-4

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http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/lord-of-slaughter-3197.html

Lord of Slaughter [Hardcover]

M.D. Lachlan

Publisher: Gollancz; Hardback edition (28 Jun 2012)

Product Description

On a battlefield strewn with corpses, a ragged figure, dressed in wolfskin and intent on death, slips past the guards into the tent of the Emperor and draws his sword. The terrified citizens of Constantinopleare plagued by mysterious sorcery. The wolves outside the city are howling. A young boy had traded the lives of his family for power. And a Christian scholar, fleeing with his pregnant wife from her enraged father, must track down the magic threatening his world. All paths lead to the squalid and filthy prison deep below the city, where a man who believes he is a wolf lies chained, and the spirits of the dead are waking. The Norsemen camped outside the city have their own legends, of the wolf who will kill the gods, but no true Christian could believe such a thing. And yet it is clear to Loys that Ragnarok is coming. Will he be prepared to sacrifice his life, his position, his wife and his unborn child for a god he doesn’t believe in? And deep in the earth, the wolfman howls…

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Duty-Calls-Britain-James-Holland/dp/0141332204/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338548902&sr=1-3

Duty Calls:BattleofBritain[Paperback]

James Holland

Publisher: Puffin (7 Jun 2012)

Product Description

Pilot officer Archie Jackson, 19, is in control of the RAF’s newest fighter aircraft, a Supermarine Spitfire.

Now he has the Luftwaffe in his sights and only one thing matters: defendingBritain.

Suddenly planes are falling from the sky, exploding and spiralling into theEnglish Channel.

Francehas fallen and the swastika flies over Occupied Europe. Only these young pilots – barely out of boyhood – stand betweenBritainand a Nazi invasion . . .

Duty Calls: Battle of Britain, throws you deep into the heart – and horror – of Britain’s darkest, and finest

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Warlord-Outlaw-4-Angus-Donald/dp/1847445071/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338548961&sr=1-1

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http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/warlord-3144.html

July 2012

Warlord (Outlaw 4) [Hardcover]

Angus Donald

Publisher: Sphere (19 July 2012)

Product Description

May 1194. Finally released from captivity, Richard the Lionheart is inNormandyengaged in a bloody war to drive the French out of his continental patrimony. Using the brutal tactics of medieval warfare – siege, savagery and scorched earth – the Lionheart is gradually pushing back the forces of King Philip ofFrance. By his side in this epic struggle are Robert, Earl of Locksley, better known as the erstwhile outlaw Robin Hood, and Sir Alan Dale, his loyal friend, and a musician and warrior of great skill and renown.

But while the battles rage and the bodies pile up, Robin seems only to be interested in making a profit from the devastation of war, while Alan is preoccupied with discovering the identity the man who ordered his father’s death ten years earlier – and the mystery is leading him towards to Paris, deep in the heart of the enemy’s territory …

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Hereward-Devils-Army-James-Wilde/dp/059306500X/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338549032&sr=1-2

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http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/hereward–the-devils-army-3143.html

Hereward: The Devil’s Army [Hardcover]

James Wilde

Publisher: Bantam Press (19 July 2012)

Product Description

1067. The battle ofHastingshas been lost; Harold Godwinsson is dead. The iron fist of William the Bastard has begun to squeeze the life out ofEngland. Villages are torched and men, women and children put to the sword as the Norman king attempts to impose his cruel will upon this unruly nation.

But there is one who stands in the way of the invader’s savagery. He is called Hereward. He is a warrior and master tactician and as adept at slaughter as the imposter who sits upon the throne. And he isEngland’s last hope.

In a Fenlands fortress of water and wild wood, Hereward’s resistance is simmering.

His army of outcasts grows by the day – a devil’s army that emerges out of the mists and the night, leaving death in its wake.

But William is not easily cowed. Under the command of his ruthless deputy, Ivo Taillebois – the man they call ‘the Butcher’ – the Norman forces will do whatever it takes to crush the rebels, even if it means razing England to the ground.

Here then is the tale of the bloodiest rebellionEnglandhas ever known – the beginning of an epic struggle that will echo down the years…

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Flag-Freedom-Nathan-Peake/dp/0755379039/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338549099&sr=1-1

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http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/the-flag-of-freedom-nathan-peake-5-3258.html

The Flag of Freedom (2012)
(The fifth book in the Nathan Peake series)
A novel by Seth Hunter

     Publisher: Headline Review (5 July 2012)

1797:Britainstands alone against the forces of Revolutionary France. A victorious French Army, led by the youthful Napoleon Bonaparte, is poised to invadeBritain. And in his country’s darkest hour, Captain Nathan Peake finds himself imprisoned by his own side on the Rock of Gibraltar – charged with treason. To prove his innocence Nathan must uncover the great deception that masks the French war aims. Is the great armada being assembled inToulonbound for the shores ofGreat Britain- orEgypt? His secret mission to discover the truth about Napoleon’s invasion plans will hurl him into two of the greatest battles of the 18th century.

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Warrior-Rome-Wolves-North/dp/0718155939/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338549238&sr=1-1

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http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/the-wolves-of-the-north-warrior-of-rome-5-3243.html

Warrior ofRome: The Wolves of the North (Warrior ofRome5) [Hardcover]

Harry Sidebottom

Publisher: Michael Joseph (5 July 2012)

Product Description

In the fifth novel in Harry Sidebottom’s acclaimed and bestselling Warrior of Rome historical fiction series, Ballista returns in Warrior of Rome: The Wolves of the North to undertake yet another epic mission – while theRoman Empire reels in chaos around him.

AD 263 – theRoman Empireis close to turmoil, violent uprising threatening to shatter the fragile balance of power.

In the north, the tribes are increasingly bold in their raids on the Imperium – their savagery unlike anything Rome has known before. Ballista must undertake his most treacherous journey yet – a covert attempt to turn the barbarians against each other. He must face the Heruli – the Eaters of Flesh, the Wolves of the North – the most brutal tribe of them all. As Ballista and his retinue make their journey, someone – or something – is hunting them, picking them off one by one, and leaving a trail of mutilated corpses and terror.

Ballista is in a strange land, among strange people, but is it possible that the greatest threat may come from within his own familia?

Harry Sidebottom’s Warrior of Rome: The Wolves of the North is a nail-biting, action packed epic tale of rebellion and terror set in theRoman Empire.

‘A book to keep you up well past your bedtime’ Evening Standard

‘Blazes with searing scholarship’ The Times

Dr Harry Sidebottom is a Fellow of St Benet’s Hall and lecturer at LincolnCollege, Oxford- where he specializes in ancient warfare and classical art. His previous books in the Warrior of Rome series, Fire in the East, King of Kings, Lion of the Sun and The Caspian Gates have all been bestsellers and are all published by Penguin.

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Blood-Diamond-Pirate-Devlin-Novel/dp/1444727842/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338549515&sr=1-3

Pre-Order Signed from Goldsboro Books

http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/blood-diamond-a-pirate-devlin-novel-pirate-devlin-3-3259.html

Blood Diamond (2012)
(The third book in the Pirate Devlin series)
A novel by Mark Keating

Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (19 July 2012)

Each Devlin novel is a standalone adventure. In BLOOD DIAMOND the fearles pirate captain Devlin is invited to London by the Prince of Wales, no less, and offered an amnesty if he will carry out a daring crime. Devlin is tasked with going toParisto steal the biggest, most valuable diamond ever found – the Pitt Diamond – now in the possession of the French Prince Regent. Set against the unsure frenzy of speculation known as the South Sea Bubble, with action and suspense on the filthy streets and great palaces of London and Paris, not to mention an epic confrontation with the French navy in the English Channel, BLOOD DIAMOND is sthe most exciting novel yet in the Devlin series.

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Clash-Empires-Red-Sea/dp/1409105342/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338549654&sr=1-1

Pre-Order signed from Goldsboro Books

http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/clash-of-empires-the-red-sea-3146.html

Clash of Empires: TheRed Sea(Clash of Empires 2)

William Napier

Publisher: Orion; Hardback edition (5 July 2012)

Product Description

TheMediterranean, 1571. For hundreds of years theOttoman Empirehas ruled the seas. But the seas are only a gateway to the lands they covet beyond.The armies of the Turk are picking off colonies and small islands, and if theMediterraneanfalls, then finally perhaps the balance of power between crescent and cross will tip…

It has been a momentous summer – armies assembling,Cyprusbesieged and men flayed alive, their bodies displayed as trophies on opposing galleys. Now, as the sun rises on one October day, history will be written in blood.

Five hours will shape history. Countries all over western Europe have sent ships and men. Caught up in it are Hodge and Ingoldsby – two young British soldiers who have survived the siege ofMaltaand are already living on borrowed time. Now, it seems the debt must be repaid…

 

August 2012

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Avenger-Rome-Gaius-Valerius-Verrens/dp/0593065166/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338549876&sr=1-1

Pre-order signed copy from Goldsboro

http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/avenger-of-rome-gaius-valerius-verrens-3-3253.html

Avenger ofRome(Gaius Valerius Verrens 3) [Hardcover]

Douglas Jackson

Publisher: Bantam Press (16 Aug 2012)

Product Description

“A master of his discipline rightly hailed as one of the best historical novelists writing today.”
–“Daily Express”
” ”
Rome, summer 66AD and Nero’s agents mercilessly hunt down the last survivors of the Piso Conspiracy. Yet, despite purging this viper’s nest with fire and iron, the increasingly unstable young Emperor feels his grip on power weakening. In Judaea, rebels have bested his army and taken an eagle, in Germania, the Rhenus legions agitate for better conditions. In Hispana, his governor plots. But the most dangerous threat is in the east where Rome’s greatest general, Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo, presides over an Empire within an Empire. Is Corbulo preparing to march against Rome and take the purple?
Gaius Valerius Verrens, Hero of Rome, is ordered to Antioch with the power of life and death over the soldier he worships. There he finds every man’s hand against him and Corbulo’s eyes not on Rome, but on a new threat from the Parthian King of Kings, Vologases. Outnumbered, Corbulo marches with Valerius at his side into the barren wastes beyond the Tigris, to meet Vologases in a mighty confrontation that will decide the future of the Empire.
In Avenger of Rome, Valerius will face his greatest enemy and his greatest challenge, but neither will be what he believes.

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Insurrection-Robyn-Young/dp/0340963662/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338550081&sr=1-1

Pre-Order signed copy from Goldsboro

http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/renegade-insurrection-trilogy-2-3266.html

Renegade (Insurrection Trilogy 2) [Hardcover]

Robyn Young

Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (30 Aug 2012)

Product Description

BORN TO A LINE OF KINGS HE WILL NOT BOW TO A CONQUEROR

King Edward of England marches on Scotland like an avenging tide. One man alone can thwart his ambition to rule all of Britain. Robert Bruce’s veins run with the blood of kings, and he burns to fulfil his family’s claim to the throne of Scotland.

But on the run through the wilds of Ireland, hunted by a relentless assassin, Robert seems a long way from achieving his destiny. And there are other eyes on Scotland’s crown, and old enemies gather against him.

This is a game of conquest, power and treachery, and Robert finds that to survive he must first abandon everything he holds dear. He was always prepared to die on the battlefield – but what else must he sacrifice to keep his hopes alive?

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Hunters-Rage-Civil-War-Chronicles/dp/1848544103/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338550142&sr=1-1

Pre-order signed copy from Goldsboro

http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/hunters-rage-3279.html

 

Hunter’s Rage (Civil War Chronicles)

Michael Arnold

Publisher: John Murray (2 Aug 2012)

Product Description

Posted to the hostile territoryof Dartmoor, Captain Innocent Stryker and his men are attacked by an elite cavalry unit commanded by the formidable Colonel Gabriel Wild and suffer heavy losses. Stryker has already clashed once with Wild, and the Roundhead has sworn to seek his revenge. After the attack, Stryker is faced with the annihilation of his company as he is hounded across the moor, eventually seeking shelter on an isolated tor populared by an enigmatic former priest who harbours no love for the King’s cause. Colonel Wild is assisted in his revenge by Osmyn Hogg, Parliamentarian Witchfinder, who shares his own deadly history with Stryker. To save his honour and his life, Stryker must lead his men to glory from the protection of the lonely granite-topped hill. Into this atmosphere of intrigue and danger comes the beautiful but mysterious Cecily Cade. Stryker comes to her aid, unaware that she carries with her special knowledge that may prove the key to Royalist victory.
The battle between Stryker and his old foes takes him from the bleak isolation of Dartmoor, through the war-ravaged lands of southernEngland and finally to Stratton, where the bloody battle betweenCornwall andDevon will decide the fate of the south-west

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/TimeRiders-City-Shadows-Book-6/dp/0141337079/ref=sr_1_7?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338550237&sr=1-7

TimeRiders: City ofShadows(Book 6) [Paperback]

Alex Scarrow

Publisher: Puffin (2 Aug 2012)

Liam O’Connor should have died at sea in 1912.

Maddy Carter should have died on a plane in 2010.

Sal Vikram should have died in a fire in 2026.

But all three have been given a second chance – to work for an agency that no one knows exists. Its purpose: to prevent time travel destroying history . . .

Hunted by cyborg assassins from the future, the TimeRiders must abandonNew York and go on the run. They escape to Victorian London and the streets where Jack the Ripper roams. But, before they can establish their new base, they make their most shattering discovery yet – and it will change everything . . .

 

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/King-Thorns-Broken-Empire-2/dp/0007439032/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338550426&sr=1-1

Pre-Order Signed copy from Goldsboro books

http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/king-of-thorns-3264.html

 

King of Thorns (2012)
(The second book in the Broken Empire series)
A novel by Mark Lawrence
 

Publisher: Harper Voyager (16 Aug 2012) 

The second book in the Broken Empire series, Lawrence takes his young anti-hero one step closer to his grand ambition.

To reach greatness you must step on bodies, and many brothers lie trodden in my wake. I’ve walked from pawn to player and I’ll win this game of ours, though the cost of it may drown the world in blood…

The land burns with the fires of a hundred battles as lords and petty kings fight for the Broken Empire. The long road to avenge the slaughter of his mother and brother has shown Prince Honorous Jorg Ancrath the hidden hands behind this endless war. He saw the game and vowed to sweep the board. First though he must gather his own pieces, learn the rules of play, and discover how to break them.

A six nation army, twenty thousand strong, marches toward Jorg’s gates, led by a champion beloved of the people. Every decent man prays this shining hero will unite the empire and heal its wounds. Every omen says he will. Every good king knows to bend the knee in the face of overwhelming odds, if only to save their people and their lands. But King Jorg is not a good king.

Faced by an enemy many times his strength Jorg knows that he cannot win a fair fight. But playing fair

was never part of Jorg’s game plan.

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Black-Mausoleum-Memory-Flames/dp/0575100486/ref=sr_1_6?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338550461&sr=1-6

The Black Mausoleum (Memory of Flames 4)

Stephen Deas

Publisher: Gollancz; Hardback edition (16 Aug 2012)

Product Description

Two years have passed since the events of the Order of the Scales. Across the realms, dragons are still hatching. Hatching, and hatching free. Skorl is an Ember, a soldier trained from birth to fight dragons. He is a living weapon, one-shot only, saturated with enough dragon-poison to bring down a monster all on his own. Misanthrope, violent and a drunk, to fulfil his purpose and slay a dragon, means to be eaten. Now Skorl has a choice: he can hang for his crimes, or he can go with the last of the Adamantine Men, fighting against an enemy he was born to face. Rat is an Outsider. He’s on the run and he¿s stumbled onto something that’s going to make him rich beyond all his dreams. It¿s just a shame that the end of the world has started without him. Kataros is an alchemist, one of the order responsible for keeping the dragons in check. One of the order that has just failed, and disastrously so. Two men, one woman. One chance to save the world from a storm of dragons . . .

September 2012

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Red-Knight-Miles-Cameron/dp/0575113294/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338550585&sr=1-2

Signed: I hope to have a signed Limited edition of this one in Parmenion-books.co.uk (keep your fingers crossed)

The Red Knight

Miles Cameron

Publisher: Gollancz; Hardback edition (20 Sep 2012)

Product Description

This is a world dominated by The Wild. Man lives in pockets of civilisation claimed from The Wild. Within men’s walls life is civilised, the peace punctuated by tournaments, politicking, courtly love and canny business. Beyond those walls men are prey – vulnerable to the exceptionally powerful and dangerous creatures which populate the land, and even more vulnerable to those creatures schemes. So when one of those creatures breaks out of The Wild and begins preying on people in their homes, it takes a specialist to hunt it down or drive it out …and even then, it’s a long, difficult and extremely dangerous job. The Black Captain and his men are one such group of specialists. They have no idea what they’re about to face …Forget George and the Dragon. Forget Sir Lancelot and tales of Knightly exploits. This is dirty, bloody work. This is violent, visceral action. This is a mercenary knight as you’ve never seen one before.

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Poseidons-Spear-Long-War-3/dp/1409114112/ref=sr_1_9?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338550659&sr=1-9

Signed: I hope to have a signed Limited edition of this one in Parmenion-books.co.uk

Poseidon’s Spear (Long War 3) [Hardcover]

Christian Cameron

Publisher: Orion; Hardback edition (13 Sep 2012)

Product Description

The third instalment in the epic story of Arimnestos, tracing the conflict between the Greeks and

Persians

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Crowbone-Oathsworn-5-Robert-Low/dp/0007298587/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338550715&sr=1-1

Pre-Oder Signed copy from Goldsboro

http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/crowbone-oathsworn-5-3281.html

 

Crowbone (Oathsworn #5)

byRobert Low

Publisher: HarperCollins (13 Sep 2012)

The long awaited return to Robert Low’sOathswornseriesIslandof Mann, 979AD. A man lies dying with a message he cannot take to his grave, a sworn secret that must be passed on only to Olaf Tryggvasson, kin of Harald Fairhair of the Yngling line and true prince ofNorway, also known as Crowbone. When the message finally arrives, so begins a quest to discover its meaning, and for Crowbone to gain what is rightfully his: the crown ofNorway. With a band of Chosen Men, Crowbone begins an unforgiving journey that will see him face the challenge of new enemies and confront his suspicions of treachery from old friends. Looming over all is his ultimate rival; Gunnhild, the Witch Mother of Kings, Crowbone’s arch-enemy who will stop at nothing to prevent him from knowing what and where this secret is. In the fifth installment of his Oathsworn series, Robert Low is back to his full-blooded Viking best, this time visiting the harsh terrain of theNorth Seacoast, in a tale about one man’s quest for survival and the unexpected alliances that emerge, as the very bonds that tie the Oathsworn together are put to the test

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The Night of the Swarm (2012)
(The fourth book in the Chathrand Voyage series)
A novel by Robert V S Redick

Publisher: Gollancz; Hardback edition (27 Sep 2012)

In the gripping sequel to Robert V. S. Redick’s acclaimed epic fantasy novels The Red Wolf Conspiracy and The Ruling Sea, the crew of the vast, ancient ship Chathrand have reached the shores of the legendary southern empire of Bali Adro. Many have died in the crossing, and the alliance of rebels, led by the tarboy Pazel Pathkendle and the warrior Thasha Isiq, has faced death, betrayal, and darkest magic. But nothing has prepared them for the radically altered face of humanity in the South.

They have little time to recover from the shock, however. For with landfall, the battle between the rebels and centuries-old sorcerer Arunis enters its final phase. At stake is control of the Nilstone, a cursed relic that promises unlimited power to whoever unlocks the secrets of its use – but death to those who fail. And no one is closer to mastering the Stone than Arunis.

Desperate to stop him, Pazel and Thasha must join forces with their enemies, including the depraved Captain Rose and the imperial assassin Sandor Ott. But when a suspicious young crewmember turns his attentions to Thasha, it is the young lovers themselves who are divided – most conveniently for Arunis. As the mage’s triumph draws near, the allies face a terrible choice: to break their oaths and run for safety, or to hunt the world’s most dangerous sorcerer through the strange and deadly dream kingdom known as the River of Shadows, and to face him a last time among the traps and horrors of his lair.

Brimming with high adventure, dark enchantment, and unforgettable characters, The River of Shadows deftly secures Redick’s place in the ranks of epic fantasy’s most original and enthralling storytellers.

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Splintered-Kingdom-James-Aitcheson/dp/1848093233/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338550942&sr=1-1

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The Splintered Kingdom [Hardcover]

James Aitcheson

Publisher: Preface Publishing (13 Sep 2012)

Product Description

The story begins on the Welsh Marches, where Tancred has been given land by his new lord, Robert Malet, in return for his services in the battle forYork. Now a lord in his own right, he has knights of his own to command and a manor to call home. But all is far from peaceful. The Welsh are joining forces with the English against theNormansand when skirmishes turn into a full scale battle atShrewsbury, Tancred is betrayed by a rival border lord and taken prisoner by the Welsh. Meanwhile the woman he loves is taken hostage by enemy English forces and the Vikings invade the east coast. Never has Tancred faced a more impossible situation.

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Send-Safely-Back-Again-Napoleonic/dp/0297866621/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338550993&sr=1-1

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Send Me Safely Back Again (Napoleonic War 3)

Adrian Goldsworthy

Publisher: W&N; Hardback edition (9 Aug 2012)

Product Description

The third novel in the series sees new challenges for the men of the 106th Foot, as the British army attempts to recover from the disaster of Corunna and establish a foothold in thePeninsula. Featuring the battles ofMedellinand Talavera, the 106th will have their mettle severely tested on the battlefield. But if Napoleon is to be ejected fromSpain, war must also be waged in more covert ways. For Hanley, the former artist who is a more natural observer than fighter, the opportunity to become an ‘exploring officer’ leads him into even more dangerous territory, the murky world of politics and partisans. And while Ensign Williams seeks to uncover the identity of the mysterious ‘Heroine of Saragossa’, a conspiracy of revenge within the regiment itself threatens to destroy him before he’s even faced a shot from the French

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Spartacus-Rebellion-2-Ben-Kane/dp/1848092318/ref=tmm_hrd_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1338551040&sr=1-4

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Not Yet Listed TBC

Spartacus: Rebellion (Spartacus 2) [Hardcover]

Ben Kane

Publisher: Preface Publishing (16 Aug 2012)

Product Description

The mighty slave army, led by Spartacus, has carried all before it, scattering the legions ofRome. Three praetors, two consuls and one proconsul have been defeated. Spartacus seems invincible as he marches towards theAlpsand freedom.

But storm clouds are massing on the horizon. Crixus theGauldefects, taking all his men with him. Crassus, the richest man inRome, begins to raise a formidable army, tasked specifically with the defeat of Spartacus. And within the slave army itself, there are murmurings of dissent and rebellion.

Spartacus, on the brink of glory, must make a crucial decision – to go forward over the Alps to freedom, or back to face the might ofRomeand try to break its stranglehold on power forever.

October 2012

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Wolfs-Gold-Empire-Anthony-Riches/dp/1444711865/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551135&sr=1-1

 NO COVER ART YET

The Wolf’s Gold (Empire) [Hardcover]

Anthony Riches

Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (25 Oct 2012)

Product Description

The Tungrian auxiliary cohorts march east to the land beyond the Danubeto guard a frontier which turns out to be as dangerous and lawless as northern Britannia in Anthony Riches’ suspenseful new Empire novel.

Fresh from their victory in Germania, Marcus Aquila and the Tungrians have been sent to Dacia, on the north-eastern edge of the Roman Empire, with the mission to safeguard a major source of imperial power.

The mines of Alburnus Major contain enough gold to pave the road to Rome. They would make a mighty prize for the marauding Sarmatae tribesmen who threaten the province, and the outnumbered auxiliaries are entrusted with their safety in the face of a barbarian invasion.

Beset by both the Sarmatian horde and more subtle threats offered by men who should be their comrades, the Tungrians must also come to terms with the danger posed by a new and unexpected enemy.

They will have to fight to the death to save the honour of the empire – and their own skins.

 NO COVER ART YET

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sword-Scimitar-Siege-Malta/dp/0755358368/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551171&sr=1-2

The Sword and the Scimitar (Siege ofMalta) [Hardcover]

Simon Scarrow

Publisher: Headline (25 Oct 2012)

1565; In its hour of greatest need,Maltamust rely upon the ancient Knights of the Order ofSt   Johnfor survival. Bound by the strongest ties: of valour, of courage and of passion, the Knights must defend their island against ferocious and deadly Ottoman attack. For Sir Thomas Barrett, summoned by the Order and compelled by loyalty – to the Knights, to his honour and to his Queen – returning to the besieged island means revisiting a past he had long since lain to rest. As the beleaguered Knights grapple to retain control, decade-old feuds will be reawakened, intense passions rekindled and deadly secrets revealed.

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Betrayal-Julian-Stockwin/dp/1444712004/ref=sr_1_9?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551205&sr=1-9

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http://www.goldsborobooks.com/books/betrayal-3282.html

Betrayal [Hardcover]

Julian Stockwin

Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (11 Oct 2012

CapeColonyis proving a tiresome assignment for Thomas Kydd’s daring commander-in-chief Commodore Popham: South America’s Spanish colonies are in a ferment of popular unrest. Rumors of a treasure hoard of Spanish silver spur him to assemble a makeshift invasion fleet and launch a bold attack on the capital of the Viceroyalty of the River Plate in Buenos Aires. Navigating the treacherous bars and mud flats of the river, the British invasion force wins a battle against improbable odds, taking the capital and the silver. But the uprising that promises the end of Spanish rule never arrives and the locals begin to see dark conspiracies behind the invader’s actions. Now Kydd’s men must face resistance and the betrayal of their closest allies. Can they save themselves and their prize?

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Red-Country-Joe-Abercrombie/dp/0575095822/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551286&sr=1-1

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Red Country (2012)
A novel by Joe Abercrombie

Publisher: Gollancz; Hardback edition (18 Oct 2012)

Shy South comes home to her farm to find a blackened shell, her brother and sister stolen, and knows she’ll have to go back to bad old ways if she’s ever to see them again. She sets off in pursuit with only her cowardly old step-father Lamb for company. But it turns out he’s hiding a bloody past of his own. None bloodier.

Their journey will take them across the lawless plains, to a frontier town gripped by gold fever, through feuds, duels, and massacres, high into unmapped mountains to a reckoning with ancient enemies, and force them into alliance with Nicomo Cosca, infamous soldier of fortune, a man no one should ever have to trust . . .

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Republic-Thieves-Gollancz-Scott-Lynch/dp/0575077018/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551354&sr=1-1

The Republic of Thieves (2011)
(The third book in the Gentleman Bastard series)
A novel by Scott Lynch

     Publisher: Gollancz; Hardback edition (18 Oct 2012)

After their adventures on the high seas, Locke and Jean are brought back to earth with a thump. Jean is mourning the loss of his lover and Locke must live with the fallout of crossing the all-powerful magical assassins the Bonds Magi. It is a fall-out that will pit both men against Locke’s own long lost love. Sabetha is Locke’s childhood sweetheart, the love of Locke’s life and now it is time for them to meet again. Employed on different sides of a vicious dispute between factions of the Bonds Sabetha has just one goal – to destroy Locke for ever. The Gentleman Bastard sequence has become a literary sensation in fantasy circles and now, with the third book, Scott Lynch is set to seal that success.

November 2012

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Death-Glory-III-Highroad-Hell/dp/0141047216/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551419&sr=1-1

Death or Glory III: Highroad to Hell [Paperback]

Michael Asher

Publisher: Penguin (8 Nov 2012)

Product Description

Part three in Death or Glory series, Highroad to Hell is Michael Asher’s latest Second World War adventure. With Asher’s insider knowledge of the SAS he brings to life the action of the battlefield in this fast-paced and compelling novel following Captain Tom Caine.

Tunisia 1943 – the Allies’ advance is halted by determined Axis forces. The 8th Army has no choice but to outflank the enemy along their impenetrable Mareth line in the hellish Matmata hills.

On a mission to safeguard this movement, Captain Tom Caine’s SAS patrol is diverted by a strange emergency signal that draws them to a derelict aircraft and a mysterious black box.

Besieged by a Nazi Death’s Head unit intent on retrieving the box and betrayed by a comrade who steals it, Caine must make a choice. Should he pursue the stolen object or stick to his original task and face almost certain death? The entire campaign rests on his decision.

Michael Asher’s third Death or Glory novel, Highroad to Hell, will have you gripped to the very last page.

Breathtaking bravery, astonishing feats of endurance, raids and battles described with terrific immediacy and pace. Compelling and definitive . . . will surely not be bettered – Sunday Telegraph

Detailed, scathingly honest. Asher has brought the critical eye of the knowledgeable insider to his in-depth study of SAS operations and personalities – Herald

Michael Asher has served in the Parachute Regiment and the SAS. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, and has won the Ness Award of the Royal Geographical Society and the Mungo Park Medal of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society for Exploration. The first two books in this series, The Last Commando and The Flaming Sword were also published by Penguin.

 

December 2012

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Skybound-Sea-Sam-Sykes/dp/0575090375/ref=sr_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551459&sr=1-4

The Skybound Sea[Hardcover]

Sam Sykes (Author)

Publisher: Gollancz; Hardback edition (27 Dec 2012)

Product Description

After the misadventures of the first two books Lenk and his companions must finally turn away from fighting each other and for their own survival and look to saving the entire human race. A terrible demon has risen from beneath the sea and where it came from thousands could follow. And all the while an alien race is planning the extinction of humanity. The third volume in the Aeon’s Gate trilogy widens the action out dramatically. TOME OF THE UNDERGATES was based mainly on a ship, BLACK HALO moved the action to an island of bones, THE SKYBOUND SEA takes us out into a world threatened with a uniquely imagined and terrifying apocalypse.

Jan 2013

NO COVER ART

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Tyrant-Destroyer-Cities-Christian-Cameron/dp/1409122247/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551500&sr=1-1

Signed: I hope to have a signed Limited edition of this one in Parmenion-books.co.uk

Tyrant: Destroyer of Cities [Hardcover]

Christian Cameron

Publisher: Orion (17 Jan 2013)

Product Description

Demetrius, son of Alexander’s former comrade, Antigonus One-Eye, was perhaps the most dashing and charismatic of the Successors, the Macedonian generals who fought a bitter war for the spoils of Alexander’s short-lived empire. Still smarting from his epic defeat at the hands of Ptolemy, Demetrius has his eye on one of the richest prizes in the ancient world – the naval superpower ofRhodes. But the Rhodians know that defeat will mean annihilation, and Demetrius’s campagin will entail five separate naval battles over several years before he can begin to breach the city walls – leading him to employ an array of fantastic war machines: ancient super-weapons like his gigantic lens of polished bronze used to focus on the city’s wooden ramparts and set them ablaze. If she is to survive against such a merciless assault, Rhodes will need the help of every ally she can muster – including the newly crowned King of theBosporus, Satyrus, and his fiery twin, Melitta…

Feb 2013

NO COVER ART

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Siege-Arturo-Perez-Reverte/dp/0297864327/ref=tmm_hrd_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1338551619&sr=1-10

The Siege [Hardcover]

Arturo Perez-Reverte

Publisher: W&N (14 Feb 2013)

Product Description

Cadiz, 1811.Spainis battling for independence whileAmericais doing the same. But in the streets of the most liberal city inEuropeother battles are taking place. A serial killer is on the loose, flaying young women to death. Each of these murders takes place near the site where a French bomb has just fallen. It is the job of policeman Rogelio Tizon to find the murderer and avoid public scandal in a city already posied on the brink. Cadiz is a complex chessboard on which an unseen hand – a ruthless assassin, artillery fire, the direction of the wind, the calculation of probabilities – moves the pieces that will decide the fate of its protagonists: a corrupt and brutal policeman, the female heir to important shipping company; an unscrupulous corsair captain; a sinister taxidermist who is also a spy, a hardened soldier, and an eccentric French artilleryman. THE SIEGE tells the story of a world that could have been but never was. It documents the end of an era and characters condemned by history to a life that will never be the same.

March 2013

NO COVER ART

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/High-Kingdom-Pierre-Pevel/dp/0575107960/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551666&sr=1-1

The High Kingdom [Hardcover]

Pierre Pevel

Publisher: Gollancz; Hardback edition (21 Mar 2013)

Product Description

Pierre Pevel has written a fantasy Dumas novel, and now he’s bringing all the skills of a historical fantasy writer to an epic stage. In the wake of Martin and Gemmell, his new project charts a dynastic power struggle between three brothers. When the King dies his will, to everyone’s surprise, leaves the throne to the second of his three sons. It’s a surprising choice, and a worrying one as it coincides with a prophecy: that the succession will lead to war, chaos and the undoing of the entire nation. It’s something his eldest son can’t allow to happen …so he challenges his brother’s right to rule – as does the youngest son, with the full support of the Church behind him. But while the prophecy itself is clear, it’s not so clear which prince it’s referring to. Lorn knows which side he’s on: his King chose a sucessor, and Lorn is going to fight to the last to place him on the throne. Honouring that last wish is the right thing to do; Lorn is also fighting for his best friend and the man he believes should be king. But belief is one thing, victory in politics and war is another and the odds are against them. Worse: with every passing day the prophecies grow darker, and a land already torn by civil war is easy pickings for an invasion …

May 2013

NO COVER ART

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Elves-Beyond-Katura-James-Barclay/dp/0575085231/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551693&sr=1-2

Elves: Beyond the Mists of Katura [Hardcover]

James Barclay

Publisher: Gollancz (16 May 2013)

NO COVER ART

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Ill-Made-Knight-Christian-Cameron/dp/1409142418/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551737&sr=1-1

Signed: I hope to have a signed Limited edition of this one in Parmenion-books.co.uk

The Ill-Made Knight [Hardcover]

Christian Cameron

Publisher: Orion (16 May 2013)

NO COVER ART

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Soldier-Crusade-Crusades-Book-2/dp/074901105X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551770&sr=1-1

Soldier of Crusade: Crusades, Book 2 [Hardcover]

Jack Ludlow

Publisher: Allison & Busby (15 Nov 2012)

NO COVER ART 

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Blooding-James-McGee/dp/0007394594/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551844&sr=1-2

The Blooding [Hardcover]

James McGee

Publisher: HarperCollins (28 Feb 2013)

Product Description

Hawkwood’s inAmericafor this gripping, action-packed follow up to the bestselling Ratcatcher – for fans of Bernard Cornwell, Conn Igulden and Patrick O’Brian 1812:Britainis at war with theUnited   States. Matthew Hawkwood, former soldier and spy, has unexpectedly arrived inAmerica. His plan is to head forCanadaand the sanctuary of the British lines. But when he gets toAlbany, headquarters of the American Northern Army, he spots a familiar face within a consignment of British prisoners — Major William Lawrence. As Hawkwood and Lawrence make their bid for freedom, they uncover a plan by the Americans to launch an invasion againstCanada. IfMontrealandQuebecfall into American hands, they will gain control of the entire continent. Hawkwood and Lawrence must pass the information to the British before it’s too late. First they must survive the journey through theAdirondack mountains, known as the Mohawk’s ‘Hunting Grounds’. But deep in Hawkwood’s past is an old alliance, one which could save both their lives andCanadafrom American rule!

September 2013

NO COVER ART

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Traitor-Son-Cycle-Book/dp/0575113324/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1338551870&sr=1-3

Signed: I hope to have a signed Limited edition of this one in Parmenion-books.co.uk

The Traitor Son Cycle Book 2 [Hardcover]

Miles Cameron

Publisher: Gollancz (19 Sep 2013)

 

Jan 2014

NO COVER

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Emperors-Curse-Andy-McDermott/dp/0755380649/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1338552118&sr=8-2

The Emperors Curse [Hardcover]

Andy McDermott

Publisher: Headline (16 Jan 2014)

Now im sure i have missed books, its murder trying to keep a comprehensive list, so please add comments if i have missed books, help me expend it…if one credit card burns so do they all !

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