Monday, January 18, 2016

A Brother's Oath by Chris Thorndycroft

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
Obtained from: Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours
Read: January 17, 2016

Denmark, 444 A.D. Two brothers – the cold and calculating Hengest and the intrepid but headstrong Horsa – find their separate worlds thrown into turmoil by royal treachery and an evil cult thought long dead. Reunited by an oath sworn in their youth, they set off on a journey that will define their destiny and set them upon the path to greatness. When Hengest’s family is kidnapped by an unknown enemy, Horsa knows his oath has become more than a thing of words and he infiltrates the crew of one of the most feared raiders in the northern world to find out who took them. Meanwhile, Hengest struggles to unite his rag-tag group of followers into a united people. His heart yearns for a safe haven for his family; a land that he and his followers can call their own for generations to come. This is the first part of the thrilling saga of the two warriors who spearheaded the Anglo-Saxon migrations to Britain and whose names became legendary as the founders of the land that would one day be called England.

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Hengist and Horsa Landing in England
It isn't often that I receive offers to review books I know absolutely nothing about, but when I do, curiosity usually overcomes inhibition. Something about not knowing sinks into my subconscious and I can't help wondering what new insight the story might afford. Chris Thorndycroft's A Brother's Oath was one such book and threw myself into the narrative as soon as it was made available.

Based on the traditional tales of Hengist and Horsa, Thorndycroft takes his readers back in time to carefully examine the intricacies of a relationship tested by time, distance, and deceit. Rich in detail, the narrative sheds light on an intriguing period of English history. The writing is a light and engaging and while I wish the telling had incorporated more in terms of atmospheric detail, I few complaints over the story's structure. It's a heavily masculine tale, but I think the tone highly appropriate to the subject matter.

I certainly enjoyed the time I spent reading A Brother's Oath and would definitely recommend Thorndycroft's work to fans of both Vikings and The Last Kingdom.

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Passion surged within him, a passion and a lust for life that had been dampened by the cold winter. The shimmer of gold from the ancient sword and the news of his brother - whom he had not seen in twelve years - had rekindled a flame within his soul that was determined to burn free, oath or no.
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Check Out All the Stops on Chris Thorndycroft's A Brother's Oath Virtual Book Tour

Monday, January 18

Tuesday, January 19
Interview at Flashlight Commentary
Spotlight at A Literary Vacation

Wednesday, January 20
Guest Post at The Writing Desk

Friday, January 22
Character Interview at Boom Baby Reviews

Saturday, January 23
Excerpt & Giveaway at Teddy Rose Book Reviews

Monday, January 25
Spotlight at CelticLady’s Reviews

Tuesday, January 26
Review at Book Nerd

Wednesday, January 27
Excerpt at Let Them Read Books

Friday, January 29
Spotlight & Giveaway at Passages to the Past

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