War at the Edge of the World

War at the Edge of the World

eBook - 2015
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"The epic first installment in a new series set at the end of empire in the reign of the Emperor Constantine, The War at the Edge of the World follows newly promoted centurion Aurelius Castus into the tumultuous battle for the future of Rome. Once a soldier in an elite legion from the Danube, now stuck in Britain's provincial backwater, Castus believes his glory days are over. But fate is about to intervene. When the king of the Picts, the savage people beyond Hadrian's Wall, dies in mysterious circumstances, Castus is selected to command the bodyguard of a Roman envoy sent to negotiate with the barbarians. But the diplomatic mission ends in bloody tragedy. Castus and his men are soon fighting for their lives and the legionary discovers that nothing about his doomed mission was ever what it seemed"--
Publisher: New York, NY :, Overlook Books,, 2015.
ISBN: 9781784081119
Characteristics: text file,rda
1 online resource
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc. - Distributor

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Hippolyta
Jun 08, 2015

I found 'War at the Edge of the World' a seriously fabulous read. The story is set in the final stages of the Roman occupation of Britain, at around the time of the Emperor Constantine. It is basically a 'boy's' adventure story, but it is raised above the mundane by the author's intimate knowledge of the Roman army, Britain's history during this period and his ability to engage his readers.

Castas, the protagonist is a typical 'superman' hero. There is no mention of his mother and he has had a difficult relationship with his father, leaving him at a young age to join the Roman army. Castas is almost consistently invincible as a centurion, repeatedly succeeding against the odds, both alone and when leading his men. With one exception, women barely feature, and when they do, it is to meet the physical needs of the story's hero or to be rescued.

Ian Ross also writes very well. He manages to balance the descriptive aspects of the colonised country-side, life as a Roman solider in early Britain and authentic acts of Roman warfare with a coherent, enticing and rapidly moving story-line, which rarely fails to surprise.

I think that 'War at the Edge of the World' would be enjoyed by those who love to be lost in a good story, as well as those who love the experience of learning more about our past. This book exceeds expectations, in both these criteria.

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