Friday, 25 September 2009

HISTORICAL FICTION REVIEW: Empire: Wounds of Honour - Anthony Riches


Marcus Valerius Aquila has scarcely landed in Britannia when he has to run for his life - condemned to dishonorable death by power-crazed Emperor Commodus. The plan is to take a new name, serve in an obscure regiment on Hadrian's Wall and lie low until he can hope for justice. Then a rebel army sweeps down from the wastes north of the Wall, and Marcus has to prove he's hard enough to lead a century in the front line of a brutal, violent war.


As a huge fan of Roman Historical Fiction, I’m always on the look out for something new and if possible a little different. Whilst a little disappointed by Simon Scarrow’s latest due to female characterisation I ended up wondering if perhaps, as the saying goes, if Rome had had its day. What was presented within brought back my faith.

With a gripping storyline, a top notch protagonist backed up by a descent supporting cast that felt fully realised you can understand why this novel took the author a number of years to write. Back that up with historical accuracy and a passion for the Roman war machine that just explodes from the pages and it’s a novel that will do for this period in the Roman army, hopefully what Christian Cameron has done for the Greeks. Finally add a stylish cover by the master of Historical Fiction covers (Larry Rostant) and you just know that Historical Fiction is coming back fighting fit and ready to rumble against all comers. I’ll eagerly await the second in Anthony’s series (currently entitled Empire: Arrow’s of Fury) which is currently scheduled for April 2010.

1 comment:

Sophie (Wogc) said...

I'm not usually a big fan of historical action novels, mainly because :
- they don't "feel" for most of them accurate (the author didn't put much efforts on researches)
- or the story could have taken place at any period (the author focused too much on the characters and not at all on the background/environment)

But, I really enjoyed reading Wounds of Honour. the story has a good flow, strong characters, and the writer obviously knows his subject (the battle scenes are more than credible).

Well done :)