Above painting: Louis Jean Francois - Mars and Venus an Allegory of Peace


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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Historical Fiction Review: Holy Warrior by Angus Donald

This is the first Angus Donald book I've read, and I found it exhilarating! An adventure in reading, I felt as though I were within the pages, holding my brief, reaching out with my sword to block an assault. I cannot wait to get my hands on the first in this Robin Hood series, OUTLAW and the third, THE KING'S MAN when it releases.


After the events ofOutlaw, Robin of Locksley—and his sidekick and narrator, Alan Dale—finds himself in a very different England and a very changed world.
In 1190 A.D. Richard the Lionheart, the new King of England, has launched his epic crusade to seize Jerusalem from the Saracens. Marching with the vast royal army is Britain’s most famous, most feared, most ferocious warrior: the Outlaw of Nottingham, the Earl of Locksley—Robin Hood himself. With his band of loyal men at his side, Robin cuts a bloody swath on the brutal journey east. Daring and dangerous, he can outwit and outlast any foe—but the battlefields of the Holy Land are the ultimate proving ground. And within Robin’s camp lurks a traitor—a hidden enemy determined to assassinate England’s most dangerous rogue.

Richly imagined and furiously paced, featuring a cast of unforgettable characters, Holy Warrior is adventure, history and legend at its finest.

St. Martin's Griffin, August 2011

ISBN: 978-0-312-67837-1, ISBN10: 0-312-67837-1,
Ebook, Hard Cover, Trade Paperback / 400 pages


From the opening pages you are pulled into a dramatic, vivid, violent medieval tale, told from the first person point-of-view of Alan Dale, one of Robin Hood's men. All our favorite Robin Hood legendary men are within the tale, but while this is a novel of Robin Hood, it is a tale never told before, and it is this once band of outlaws charging into the fray that was the Holy War, in search of spreading Christianity and saving the Holy Land. Except that Robin Hood was not especially Christian... And deceit, greed, pillaging and fighting take precedence.

Young Alan Dale, sees many things that change him--violance, love, greed, treachery--and through it all, he comes out on top, strong for having learned his lesson and staying true to his honor.

Mr. Donald, did a fabulous job on his research and should be applauded for his authentic historical details. I cringed, I gasped, I exclaimed loudly, I was sad, I was happy. Holy Warrior, is definitely a book that moved me through many emotions! The author truly immersed himself in the tale and it comes through. He knew Robin Hood and his band, he knew about the events of the Holy War and the events of the time period in England. Because of this, Angus Donald was able to pen a brilliant tale that combined actual historical events with legend. I believed this story. I believed it could have taken place. It was real within those pages.

And I must say, I looked forward to what curses Little John was going to come up with next! "God's hairy bollocks!" Hilarious!

Be warned, this is not a tale for the faint of heart. Be prepared and travel on with shield in place, for this brutal tale awaits your reading pleasure. A recommended read for history and Robin Hood fans!


Daphne said...

I recently read "Outlaw" and enjoyed it very much - I'm looking forward to reading the other books in the series.

gio said...

Sounds interesting! Thanks for the review.

Eliza Knight said...

Enjoy! It was awesome!