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Reading Recommendations Central Page
















Ladies of Lallybroch

Reading Recommendations

Historical Fiction

 

Jean M. Auel - Earth's Children Series

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The Clan of the Cave Bear
The stunning epic that stirred the imagination of millions. Here is a novel of awesome beauty and power. A moving saga about people, relationships and the boundaries of love. Through Jean Auel's magnificent storytelling, we are taken back to the dawn of mankind and swept up in the wonderful world of a very special heroine, Ayla. Her enthralling story is one we all can share. A natural disaster has left young Ayla alone, wandering, fending for herself in an unfamiliar land. One day, she is discovered by the Clan of the Cave bear, men and women far different from her own people. Tall, blond, blue-eyed Ayla is a mysterious stranger to the Clan and at first they mistrust her and cast her out. But as she grows to know them and to learn the ways of the Clan, she is welcomed. And as she leads them in their struggle for survival, the Clan come to worship Ayla. For in her blood flows the future of humanity.
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The Valley of Horses
Here is an unforgettable odyssey into a world of awesome mysteries, into a distant past made vividly real, a novel that carries us back to the exotic, primeval world we experienced in The Clan Of The Cave Bear -- and to beautiful Ayla, the bold woman who captivates us with her fierce courage and questing heart. Cruelly cast out by the ancient Clan that adopted her as a child, Ayla now travels alone in a land of glacial cold and terrifying beasts. She is searching for the Others, a race as tall, blond, and blue-eyed as she. But Ayla finds only a hidden valley, where a herd of hardy steppe horses roams. Here, she is granted a unique kinship with animals, enabling her to learn the secrets of fire and raw survival -- but still, her need for human companionship and love remains unfulfilled. then fate brings her a stranger, handsome Jondolar, and Ayla is torn between fear and hope -- and carried to an awakening of desire that would shape the future of mankind.
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The Mammoth Hunters
Once again, Jean M. Auel opens the door of time to reveal an age of wonder and terror at the dawn of humanity. With all the consummate storytelling artistry and vivid authenticity she brought to The Clan Of The Cave Bear and its sequel, The Valley Of Horses, Jean M. Auel continues the breathtaking epic journey of the woman called Ayla. Now, with her devoted Jondalar, Ayla boldly sets forth into the land of the Mamutoi -- the Mammoth Hunters, the Others she has been seeking. Though Ayla must learn their strange customs and language, it is because of her uncanny hunting and healing skills that she is adopted into the Mammoth Hearth. Here Ayla finds her first women friends, and painful memories of the Clan she left behind. Here, too, is Ranec, the dark-skinned, magnetic master carver of ivory tusks to whom Ayla is irresistibly drawn -- setting Jondalar on fire with jealousy. Throughout the icy winter, Ayla is torn between her two men. But soon will come the great spring mammoth hunt, when Ayla must choose her mate and her destiny -- to remain in the Hearth with Ranec, or to follow Jondalar into a far-off place and an unknown future.
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The Plains of Passage
Jean Auel's enthralling Earth's Children Series has become a literary phenomenon, beloved by readers around the world. Now, in a brilliant novel as vividly authentic and entertaining as those that came before, Jean M. Auel returns us to the earliest days of humankind... and to the captivating adventures of the courageous heroine called Ayla. With her companion, Jondolar, Ayla sets out on her most dangerous and daring journey -- away from the welcoming hearth of the Mammoth Hunters, and into the unknown. their odyssey spans a beautiful but treacherous continent, the windswept grasslands of Ice Age Europe, casting the bold pair among strangers. Some will become friends, intrigued by Ayla's ways of taming wild horses and wolves. Others will become fierce enemies, threatened by what they cannot understand. But always the orphaned Ayla and the wandering Jondolar will heed the voice and vision that urges them on, deeper into the dark and spectacular heart of an unmapped world. For they are driven to reach that place on earth they can call home. Together, they hold their future in their hands.
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Gillian Bradshaw - The Beacon at Alexandria
In the Fourth Century A.D., independent and determined young Charis is forbidden to become a doctor because she is a woman. Disguising herself as a eunuch she flees Ephesus for Alexandria, then the center of learning. There she apprentices to a Jewish doctor but eventually becomes drawn into Church politics and is forced once again to flee. She serves as an army doctor at a Roman outpost in Thrace until, kidnapped by barbarian Visigoths, she finds her destiny to heal and also to be a woman and a wife.
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coverD. K. Broster - The Jacobite TrilogyScotlandScotland
The Flight of the Heron, The Dark Mile, The Gleam in the North
1745 - When Bonnie Prince Charlie lands in Scotland, the mountains and glens of the Highlands ring to the pipes and drums of the clans who flock to his banner. Charged with excitment, heroisme and romance, this stirring and tragic adventure that is the unforgettable story of the "King Over The Water", has never been better told.
These books are not listed at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk, but it's well worth searching for a used copy!


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Ken Follett - The Pillars of the Earth
The epic story of the building of a cathedral in 12th century England and the lives of the people entwined with it and each other is a sensuous, enduring narrative, and a gripping tale of faith, ambition, bloodshed and betrayal.
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Margaret George - The Autobiography of Henry VIII with Notes by His Fool Will Sommers
Much has been written about the mighty, egotistical Henry VIII: the man who dismantled the Church because it would not grant him the divorce he wanted; who married six women and beheaded two of them; who executed his friend Thomas More; who sacked the monasteries; who longed for a son and neglected his daughters, Mary and Elizabeth; who finally grew fat, disease-ridden, dissolute. Now, in her magnificent work of storytelling and imagination, Margaret George bring us Henry VIII's story as he himself might have told it, in memoirs interspersed with irreverent comments from his jester and confidant, Will Somers. Brilliantly combining history, wit, dramatic narrative, and an extraordinary grasp of the pleasures and perils of power, this monumental novel shows us Henry the man more vividly than he has ever been seen before.
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coverMargaret George - Mary Queen of Scotland and The IslesScotland
A fictional portrait of the life of Mary Queen of Scots begins with the Catholic princess in 1542, only six days old, being crowned as the Queen of the Scots, and continues with her crowning as Queen of France and her historic fight with Elizabeth over the throne of England.
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Margaret George - The Memoirs of Cleopatra
The world-renowned author of The Autobiography of Henry VII and Mary Queen of Scotland And the Isles turns from Renaissance Britain to ancient Egypt and the story of Cleopatra, Queen of the Nile. Told in the first person -- from the young queen's earliest memories of her father's tenuous rule to her own reign over one of the most glittering kingdoms in the world -- this is a mesmerizing saga of ambition and power. But it is also a tale of passion that begins when the twenty-one-year-old Cleopatra, desperate to return from exile, seeks out the one man who can help her, the Roman general Julius Caesar -- and does not end until, having survived the assassination of Caesar and the defeat of the second man she loves, Marc Antony, she plots her own death rather than allow herself to be paraded in triumph through the streets of Rome.
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Parke Godwin - King Arthur Trilogy

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Firelord
A unique perspective of the Arthurian legend, narrated in the first person by the great king himself. In Godwin's story, set in the 5th century amid the collapse of the Roman Empire in Britain, we discover a painfully mortal Arthur, flawed and fallible with a sympathetic distaste for the necessary cruelties of war. Previously published in trade paper and mass market by Bantam. Artorious Pendragon, a young warrior-king destined to unite the shattered land of Britain, reaches unattainable heights, only to lose his heart and his kingdom to the greatest betrayal of all.
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Beloved Exile
In the wake of Arthur's death, Guenevere tries desperately to hold the fragmented kingdom together with the aid of a few loyal knights. Ultimately betrayed, she finds herself impressed into a life of servitude under a bold Saxon lordling who is unaware of her identity.
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The Last Rainbow
Journeying to a pagan world of old magic in order to spread his religious beliefs, Padree, a passionate young priest, encounters the extraordinary Dorelei, the leader of the mystical Faerie folk, who teaches him about the earth and spirituality. In this book, noted fantasy writer Parke Godwin combines Christian legend, Celtic folklore and mysticism to create a magical and mythical portrait of Ireland's patron saint.
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Parke Godwin - Robin Hood Trilogy

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Sherwood
Forced from his home by Norman invaders, young Edward Aelredson, Thane of Denby, takes refuge in the forest Sherwood, where, with sword and bow, he bedevils the usurping king and comes to be called "Robin Hood."
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Robin and the King
William the Conqueror's tyrannous rule prompts Edward Aelredson -- formerly Robin Hood -- to question his right to rule, earning him the enmity of William's ruthless chancellor, Ranulf. Exiled to Normandy, Robin saves the king's life and regains entry into England -- where he is accused of witchcraft.
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Lord of Sunset (Prequel)
In his quest for the English throne, Harold of Wessex must forsake his peaceful life with his adored wife. But throughout his reluctant ascendance -- and the rise of his friend-turned-adversary William of Normandy -- Harold will not betray his only true love, even though war and tragedy may result.
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Elizabeth Goudge - The Child From the Sea
The Child From the Sea tells the rich, turbulent tale of Lucy Walter, secret wife of Charles II, and mistress-despite-herself to a gallant and reckless Irish nobleman in exile. It is a stiry filled with the passions and adventure of an age of glory and squalor, nobility and depravity, courage and betrayal. It is a drama that ranges from an isolated castle in Wales, to the pomp and ceremony of London, to the glitter, intrigue and license of Paris. Above all, it is an intensely moving, unforgettable portayal of a woman as proud as she was beautiful, whose untamed heart was torn between two men and whose lovely body and shining spirit tipped the scales of history.
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Cynthia Harrod-Eagles - Morland Dynasty Series (21 books)

The Founding
"This is the first book in the Morland Dynasty series. It begins in 1434 with the marriage of Robert Morland, son of a Yorkshire woolmerchant, and Eleanor Courtney, a young Dorset maiden. It heralds the beginning of a great family. Under the craftful eye of Eleanor, the woolmerchant she maried soon becomes a very successful clothier. This series follows the Morland family from the War of the Roses to the present day."
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Pamela Kaufman - Shield of Three Lions
When knighthood was in flower and troubadours sang, when men fought long bloody crusades and women obeyed, a stout-hearted young girl cut her golden locks and rode as a boy. She hid her true sex and noble ancestry, sought to regain her lost lands. A panoramic tapestry of a novel set in the Middle Ages that weaves the sights, the sounds, the smells and the pagentry of a magical age with the story of Alix, an extraordinary young heroine.
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Susan Kay - Legacy
Winner of the Georgette Heyer Historical Novel Prize, Legacy is the story of Queen Elizabeth I, a woman who spends a lifetime in search of a man strong enough to be her equal -- and of the men who suffer for their devotion to her. The author brilliantly captures the spirit of this unique ruler.
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Gary Jennings - Aztec and Aztec Autum

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Aztec
Here is the extraordinary story of the last and greatest native civilization of North America, at the height of its magnificent. It is a story told in the words of one of the most robust and memorable characters in modern fiction. His name is Mixtil -- Dark Cloud. Rising above his lowly station, Mixtil distinguishes himself as a scribe and later a warrior. He earns a fortune as a traveling merchant, exploring every part of what the Aztecs called The One World -- the far lands of mountains, jungles, deserts, seacoasts.
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Aztec Autumn
Aztec Autumn takes us to a time one generation after the Conquest, when the magnificent Aztec empire has fallen beneath the brutal heel of the invading Spaniards. But one proud young Aztec, Tenamaxtli, refuses to bow to the foreign conquerors - and secretly begins to recruit, from among the struggling survivors of the Conquest, an army of insurrection. On his courageous quest he finds high adventure, passionate women, unlikely allies, bright hope, and bitter tragedy. Driven by his dream of restoring the lost glory of the Aztec empire, he will come to threaten the seemingly invincible power of mighty Spain. Until now, Tenamaxtil's rebellion has been little remembered, perhaps because it shed no glory on the men who would write the history books, but on its outcome depended the future of all North America. Aztec Autumn re-creates this forgotten chapter of history in all its splendor.
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Marion Meade - Stealing Heaven : The Love Story of Heloise and Abelard
This fiction is based on fact: the 12th century love letters of the novel's main character, Heloise, the most brilliant and learned woman of Christian Europe who, at the age of 17, fell in love with her tutor, Peter Abelard. A celebrated philosopher, he was considered a cleric and forbidden to wed.
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Edith Pargeter - The Heaven Tree Trilogy
The Heaven Tree Trilogy : The Heaven Tree, The Green Branch, The Scarlet Seed
A trilogy of novels set in twelfth-century England and Wales, during the reign of King John, chronicles the adventures of master stone carver Harry Talvace, Ralf Isambard, Lord of Parfois, and their two sons.
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Edith Pargeter - The Brothers of Gwynedd Quartet
Comprising Sunrise in the West, The Dragon at Noonday, The Hounds of Sunset, Afterglow and Nightfall
The story of Llewelyn, first true Prince of Wales is the history of medieval Wales in dramatic and epic form. Llewelyn's burning vision is of one Wales, united against the threat of the English. But before he can achieve his dream, he must first tackle enemies nearer home. All three of his brothers hamper his efforts to create an independent state. The best-loved of the three, David, brought up throughout his childhood at the English court, restless, charming, torn between two loyalties, is fated to be his brother's undoing. Despite the support of his beloved wife Eleanor, Llewelyn finds himself trapped in a situation where the only solution is his own downfall and a tragic death...
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coverJennifer Roberson - Lady of the Glen: A Novel of 17th-Century Scotland and the Massacre of Glencoe ScotlandScotland
Lady of the Glen tells of a time and a place like no other -- when political treachery and royal intrigue ruled the day... a time when countrymen battled for their freedom and usurpers sought crowns. At the novel's center is a love story of breathtaking scope: a man and a woman -- enemies from birth -- know from the moment they meet that they will lie in each other's arms someday. But their love, for centuries forbidden, comes at the most dangerous of times. Lady of the Glen tells of Catriona Campbell's enduring love for Alasdair Og MacDonald, the second-born son of her clan's most powerful enemy, the Laird of Glencoe. It is MacDonald who alone shows the young Catriona kindness in a harsh and violent world. As the years pass, the heart proves stronger than the sword, and they boldly pledge their love... to handfast forever. While the Dutch King William conspires against the Scottish rebels who seek to return the exiled James Stuart to the throne, Catriona and Alasdair share a passion that joins them forever - although the lovers become pawns of war... and of history
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coverJennifer Roberson - Lady of the Forest ScotlandMethadone List
As the gates of Ravenskeep swing open and a young woman flees into the primeval depths of Sherwood Forest and into the arms of the man she loves, a saga of exceptional power and remarkable passion begins... He is Sir Robery Locksley -- the heroic nobleman who has turned his back on all he knows to embark on a dangerous quest for justice in an England torn apart by treachery, betrayal and war. She is Lady Marian of Ravenskeep -- the proud, defiant knight's daughter who leaves her sheltered life behind to join a shadowy band of outlaws who follow no law but their own. Robin Hood and Maid Marian -- Their love has belonged to legend for centuries, and now it belongs to us all, stunningly brought to life by the masterful pen of a truly gifted storyteller. Against a medieval tapestry of color and pageantry, Jennifer Roberson has woven a rich, sweeping tale of a woman whose courage and passion could forever alter the destiny of that mist-shrouded land of lore we know in our hearts and see in our dreams... (Coming next, the sequel "Lady of Sherwood")
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Lucia St. Clair Robson - Ride the Wind
In 1836, when she was nine years old, Cynthia Ann Parker was kidnapped by Comanche Indians. This is the story of how she grew up with them, mastered their ways, married one of their leaders, and became, in every way, a Comanche woman. It is also the story of a proud and innocent people whose lives pulsed with the very heartbeat of the land. It is the story of a way of life that is gone forever....
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Michael & Jeff Shaara - Civil War Trilogy

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Michael Shaara - The Killer Angels
From Library Journal: The late Shaara's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel (1974) concerns the battle of Gettysburg and was the basis for the 1993 film Gettysburg. The events immediately before and during the battle are seen through the eyes of Confederate Generals Lee, Longstreet, and Armistead and Federal General Buford, Colonel Joshua L. Chamberlain, and a host of others. The author's ability to convey the thoughts of men in war as well as their confusion -- the so-called "fog of battle" -- is outstanding.
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Jeff Shaara - Gods and Generals
In a prequel of sorts to his father Michael Shaara's 1974 epic novel The Killer Angels, Jeff Shaara explores the lives of Generals Lee, Hancock, Jackson and Chamberlain as the pivotal Battle of Gettysburg approaches. Shaara captures the disillusionment of both Lee and Hancock early in their careers, Lee's conflict with loyalty, Jackson's overwhelming Christian ethic and Chamberlain's total lack of experience, while illustrating how each compensated for shortcomings and failures when put to the test. The perspectives of the four men, particularly concerning the battles at Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville, make vivid the realities of war.
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Jeff Shaara - The Last Full Measure
As The Last Full Measure opens, Gettysburg is past and the war advances to its third brutal year. On the Union side, the gulf between the politicians in Washington and the generals in the field yawns ever wider. Never has the cumbersome Union Army so desperately needed a decisive, hard-nosed leader. It is at this critical moment that Lincoln places Ulysses S. Grant in command -- and turns the tide of the war. For Robert E. Lee, Gettysburg was an unspeakable disaster -- compounded by the shattering loss of the fiery Stonewall Jackson two months before. Lee knows better than anyone that the South cannot survive a war of attrition. But with the total devotion of his generals -- Longstreet, Hill, Stuart -- and his unswerving faith in God, Lee is determined to fight to the bitter end. Battle by staggering battle, Shaara dramatizes the escalating confrontation between Lee and Grant -- complicated, heroic, deeply troubled men.
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Wilbur Smith - The Seventh Scroll and River God

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River God
Two thousand years before Christ, the ancient heartland of the Nile Kings stands torn and bleeding from the constant passage of civil war. Drained of gold and of the blood of its young men, the legacy of eleven sovereign Pharaohs is thrown to the winds of the desert as weak men inherit the crown. On the eve of the Festival of Osiris, the loyal subjects of the Pharaoh of Upper Egypt gather in Thebes to pay homage to their leader. Among them is Taita -- eunuch slave to the Lord Intef and a being blessed with extraordinary gifts. While others salute the triumphal passage of the royal barge, Taita, clever and scheming, can see only the icon of a kingdom's fading glory. Beside him stand his proteges: Lostris, the Lord Intef's daughter, beautiful beyond her fourteen years; and Tanus, proud young army officer, who has vowed to avenge his father's death and seize Lostris as his prize. From Thebes to the mountains of Abyssinia, from the legend of the Blue Sword to the epic battle against the mighty Hyksos army, comes the magnificent, richly detailed saga of their triumphs and their destinies.
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The Seventh Scroll
The Seventh Scroll, an ancient papyrus written by the slave Taita, holds the secret to the location of the Pharaoh's hidden tomb and his staggering untold wealth. Untouched for thousands of years, the scroll is accidentally discovered and instantly becomes something people will kill to obtain. In a race against an unknown enemy, Royan Al Simma, a beautiful Egyptologist who has deciphered the scrolls, and Nicholas Quentin-Harper, an English adventurer who risks his fortune, search the Ethiopian highlands for the whereabouts of the Pharaoh's treasure. As they close in on the tomb, the brilliant Taita's ancient traps become deadly while their enemy brings his ruthlessness and power to bear.
Note: The Seventh Scroll is not historical fiction. It's an Adventure/Suspense novel, but since it's the sequel to River God I listed it here.
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Sigrid Undset - Kristin Lavransdatter Trilogy
Originally published in Norwegian in 1920 and set in fourteenth-century Norway, The Wreath chronicles the courtship of a headstrong and passionate young woman and a dangerously charming and impetuous man. Undset re-creates the historical backdrop in vivid detail, immersing readers in the day-to-day life, social conventions, and political undercurrents of the period. Her prose combines the sounds and style of Nordic ballads, European courtly poetry, and religious literature. But the story Undset tells is a modern one; it mirrors post-World War I political and religious anxieties, and introduces a heroine who has long captivated contemporary readers. Defying her parents and stubbornly pursuing her own happiness, Kristin emerges as a woman who not only loves with power and passion but intrepidly confronts her sexuality.
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Jack Whyte - The Camulod ChroniclesMethadone List
Diana Gabaldon: "From the building blocks of history and the mortar of reality, Jack Whyte has built Arthur's world and showed us the bone beneath the flesh of legend."

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The Skystone
We all know the story -- how Arthur pulled the sword from the stone, how Camelot came to be, and the power struggles that ultimately destroyed Arthur's dreams. But what of the time before Arthur? What were the forces that helped create him? And how did the legend really come to pass? Before the time of Arthur and Camelot, Britain has become a dark and deadly place, savaged by warring factions of Picts, Celts, and invading Saxons. The Roman citizens who had lived there for generations were suddenly faced with a deadly choice. Should they leave and take up residence in a Roman world that was corrupt and utterly foreign? Or stay and face the madness that would surely ensue when the Roman legions -- Britain's last bastion of safety for the civilized -- leave? For two Romans, Publius Varrus and his friend Caius Britannicus, there can be only one answer. The will stay, try to preserve what is best of Roman life, and create a new culture out of the wreckage. In doing so, they will plant the seeds of the legend. For these two men are Arthur's great-grandfathers and their actions will shape a nation... and forge a sword known as Excalibur.
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The Singing Sword
We know the legends: Arthur, who brought justice to a land that had known only cruelty and force; his father, Uther, who had carved a kingdom out of the chaos of the fallen Roman Empire; the sword Excalibur, drawn from stone by England's greatest king. But legends do not tell the whole tale. Legends do not tell of the despairing Roman soldiers, abandoned by their empire, faced with the choice of fleeing back to Rome or struggling to create a last stronghold against barbarian onslaughts from the north and the east. Legends do not tell of Arthur's great-grandfather, Publius Varrus, the warrior who marked the boundaries of a reborn empire with his own shed blood; they do not tell of Publius' wife, Luceiia, British-born and Roman-raised, whose fierce beauty burned pale next to her passion for law and honor. The Singing Sword continues the gripping epic begun in The Skystone. As the great night of the Dark Ages falls over Roman Britain, a lone man and woman fight to build a last stronghold of law and learning -- a crude hill-fort which one day, long after their deaths, will become a great city; a crude hill-fort which one day will be known as Camelot.
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The Eagles' Brood
Caius Merlyn Britannicus: Most know the new leader of the Colony as Merlyn; all call him Commander. He is responsible for the Colony's safety, and the people look to him for justice and salvation. It is a harsh life but a good one, and Merlyn is dedicated to spreading the influence of Roman culture beyond the Colony's borders.
Uther Pendragon: The man who will father the legendary Arthur, King of the Britons. He is the cousin Merlyn has known and loved since their births. He is the tireless warrior -- the red dragon to Merlyn's great silver bear -- and between the two of them, the Colony knows few enemies.
In a world torn apart by warfare and upheaval, each is the other's certainty and the guarantee of the survival of the Colony, until a vicious crime, one that strikes at the roots of Merlyn's own life, drives a wedge between them. A wedge that threatens the fate of a nation.
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The Saxon Shore
Merlyn Britannicus and Uther Pendragon -- The Silver Bear and The Red Dragon -- are the leaders of the Colony, lifeblood to the community from which will come the fabled Camulod. But soon their tranquility is in ruins, Uther lies dead following treachery... and all that is left of the dream is the orphaned babe Arthur. Heir to the Colony of Camulod, born with Roman heritage, as well as the royal blood of the hibernians and the Celts, Arthur is the living incarnation of the sacred dream of his ancestors; independent survival in Britain amidst the ruins of the Roman Empire. When Arthur is adopted by his cousin, Caius Merlyn Britannicus, an enormous responsibility is placed upon Merlyn's shoulders. Now he must prepare young Arthur to unify the clans of Britain and guard the mighty sword Excalibur, created by his great uncle Publius Varrus. Above all, Merlyn must see that Arthur survives to achieve his ancestors' dreams--in spite of the deadly threats rumbling from the Saxon Shore.
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The Fort at River's Bend
Merlyn Britannicus, leader of the Colony known as Camulod, is faced with the task of educating his young charge, Arthur, future King of the Britons. Fearing for the life of his nephew when an assassination attempt goes awry, Merlyn takes Arthur and his boyhood companions Gwin, Ghilleadh, and Bedwyr, on a journey that will take them to the ruins of a long-abandoned Roman fort -- far from Camulod and the only place where Merlyn feels they will be safe. It is there that Merlyn will enlist the help of this close-knit group of friends to help Arthur learn the skills of a warrior and the tough lessons of justice, honor, and the responsibilities of leadership. Arthur is just a boy... but the day is not far off when he will have to claim the sword that is his birthright: Excalibur.
Beyond their idyllic retreat, forces are coming together to threaten the tenuous peace of Camulod. In Cambria, the death of Arthur's father, Uther, has left his people leaderless and vulnerable. And in Cornwall, Merlyn faces the greatest threat yet from the gathering forces of his enemy, Peter Ironhair, and his monstrous friend, Carthac -- men who have sworn to destroy Merlyn and all he holds dear. How can Merlyn prepare young Arthur to be a ruler of men if he continues to train him in isolation? Does the advantage of taking him back to the world outweigh the threat to his life from those who would stop at nothing to see him dead? The life of young Arthur Pendragon is at a crossroads. In the end Merlyn must decide to risk the dream -- and the life of his young charge -- if a united Britain is ever to be made real.
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The Sorcerer: Metamorphosis
Jack Whyte continues his long, thoughtful exploration of one of our most resonant myths, the legend of Camelot. The Sorcerer: Metamorphosis is the sixth book in his Camulod Chronicles, and it takes up the story just as Arthur makes the transition from boy to man. Whyte's focus, however, is on Caius Merlyn Britannicus. Merlyn, descended from Britain's Roman rulers, is one of the co-rulers of Camulod, a stronghold of civilization under perpetual threat from invading Saxons and Danes. Merlyn leads an eventful yet happy life: he has a loving fiancée, Tressa; a fine ward, Arthur; a magnificent black horse, Germanicus; many allies; and grand plans for Camulod's expansion and Britain's safety. Merlyn's reflections on one campaign sum up his easy victories throughout the first half of the book: "It was slaughter--nothing less. One pass we made, from west to east, and scarce a living man was left to face us." But even the mightiest ship must one day be tested on the shoals. The suspense gains momentum when Whyte breaks Merlyn free of his brooding, reactive role and propels him and his companions into danger. In despair, Merlyn takes a new, subtler tack against his archenemies Ironhair and Carthac ("And then I truly saw the size of him. He towered over everyone about him, hulking and huge, his shoulders leviathan and his great, deep, hairless chest unarmoured").
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Persia Woolley - Child of the Northern Spring
In the tradition of The Once and Future King and Mists of Avalon, Persia Woolley has created a rich, highly readable, startlingly original recreation of the tale of Arthur -- seen from Guinevere's point of view. First book in a trilogy about Guinevere and Camelot (Child of the Northern Spring, Queen of the Summer Stars and Guinevere: The Legend in Autumn).
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