The Eagle's Shadow - over at David's Book Blurg

Synopsis

The British army is shattered, defeat snatched from the jaws of victory by subterfuge and betrayal. Caradoc flees the battlefield, the crown heavy on his head and his heart set on retribution. He has to make hard decisions and tough compromises, but with the sovereignty of Britain at stake, personal pride sometimes has to take second place.

Emperor Claudius is determined to make as much political mileage as possible out of the Roman victory in an attempt to consolidate his own position. That doesn’t sit well with the Roman military, who have their own objectives and who will do whatever it takes to achieve them.

As the Romans consolidate their gains and begin to push west, Caradoc finds he has few friends left. He must turn to the Durotriges, a wild, hill fort dwelling tribe. But the Durotriges are riven by strife and petty squabbles.

Aulus Plautius, commander of the Roman army, brings his siege weapons to bear, can Caradoc resist the onslaught?

Review

Before I start have you read my review of The Eagle’s Shadow?? If not where have you been? Check it out here

Ok. So here we are trust back into the war between the British and Roman armies. During the first book we learn of a battle which turned out to be a major win for the Romans due to the divided loyalties of the British tribes at the time. This book continues on after book one and we are back we one of my favourite characters Fionn and the action is pretty much non-stop in this fast moving tale.

In the first book I really liked Caradoc but in this book you see a different side to the man. He becomes blinded by revenge and we see Fionn and his friends struggle to see eye to eye with his decisions. Fionn has his own demons in this book too.. I’m not saying too much as it would spoil it for you.

While Caradoc has his mind set firmly on revenge Fionn wants to hit back at the Romans so this book mainly focuses on the period where they are trying to gather support from the other tribes. Needless to say things do not go Fionn’s way.

Keith has written an excellent follow up book which he clearly researched well. I think it’s always hard to get the flow right between two books but the transition is seamless and it felt as if I’d never but the first book down. There were some great additions to the characters in this one which made the book feel fresh but you also had a lot of detail given to some of the characters from the first book which gave them more depth. I particularly enjoyed reading anything involving Anatolius.

One of the things I loved the most was the different point of views. You see the story play out from both the British and Roman stand point and it made for compelling reading

There’s only one downside to this book.. it had to end..I just wanted to turn the page and keep reading. It’s a true talent to keep a reader wanting more when it comes to a series of books but Keith managed to do this within the first few chapters and has hooked me in with his story telling so much already that I already have another non historical fiction piece of his in my review pile and I intend to read more of his work over the next few months

If you are a fan of the genre this series is a must!

Here’s hoping Keith writes Caradoc #3 soon!

The Corpse Role - over at Liz Loves Books

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Not everything that gets buried stays buried… sometimes things have a nasty habit of resurfacing…

When the body of a security van driver implicated in an unsolved £1.2 million heist turns up in a shallow grave two years later it’s just the beginning for Detective Inspector Charlotte Granger.

She embarks on an investigation that takes her into dangerous territory – a world of dirty cops, dodgy private investigators, local villains and nosy journalists. Meanwhile events from Granger’s own past are threatening to come back and haunt her..

Really terrific crime fiction from Keith Nixon – I basically read it in a day, bit of a page turner, some great characters and an authentic and hard hitting storyline.

Told in two timelines, brilliantly constructed and ever engaging, there is a beautiful flow to the prose that keeps you hooked right in, some twisty turny goodness and a jaw dropping ending.

Some really excellent plotting adds extra depth to both characters and storytelling, the past element being really most addictive – this is a crime thriller with heart, a mix of police procedural and thriller with intelligent storytelling and a sometimes almost noir feel.

You’ll note I havent said too much on the tale itself. For very good reason. Go find out!

The Eagle's Shadow - Review at David's Book Blurg

David kindly reviewed Caradoc #1 over at his blog recently:

This book is a fast paced, epic war story and boy did I enjoy it.

First of there is a lot of information in this book but Keith very handily added a section at the beginning of the book to explain the names used within the book since place names have changed over the years along with rivers etc. This was not only useful so I could set the scene but it was also very interesting information

We find ourselves thrust into time when Rome was planning to invade Britain and the author decided to tell his tale from both the Roman and the Britons view point. This gave a great feel to the book and broke up the action perfectly so you kept reading without even noticing the time pass.

Keith has picked a very interesting subject for the book and built on this story with the characters. There are a few I liked a lot.. Fionn & Etain stood out for me.  The action with Fionn had me hooked!

There are a large number of characters in this book; Because of this some don’t get a chance to develop. Once you read the book you can totally understand why though as there so much going on in the book it would be too much to squeeze in and also the story is so strong and violent it’s inevitable some of these characters will die

The author goes into some great detail describing the warfare tactics and clearly has researched well.

I felt the story easily pulled me in and I even found myself shouting in my head “Move, Move” when it came to clashes between the two armies.

One of the most interesting parts of this book for me was the relationships between the tribes in Britain at the time. I won’t spoil the book for you but these relationships coupled with the unified force of the Romans made for an epic tale

From reading the authors historical notes he gives a great insight into some of the characters and the time period and it’s definitely peaked my interest and made me want to read up on this time period.

I’m very pleased to see there is a follow up book and I’m looking forward to reading/reviewing that soon

Conclusion… Do I think this book is worth the 99p asking price currently on Amazon? Hell yes!

If you enjoy tales involving warfare, blood, guts, tension, betrayal then you will certainly like this book.

I'm Dead Again - Review at Mystery People

A review of I'm Dead Again over at Mystery People:

The newest from Keith Nixon’s darkly comical crime books. This one, again features David Brodie, once a first-class reporter, but now seriously not only on the slides, but right down at the bottom. His wife is gone, and he is broke. Then he receives a phone-call with a difference-from a dead man. Only this could make things worse.

Next the corpse of Emily Hollowman’s ex husband turns up, in very dodgy circumstances, and Emily employs the tramp Konstantin Boryakov to investigate. All roads lead to a business man called Gordon Dredge. Dredge being the man that caused Brodie to lose everything. However, Dredge has big problems too, with The Steroid. The Steroid is a gangland boss called Oakhill, who himself is in a perilous situation, with a Chekhovian called Adam, who is out to take over his empire. The list of colourful and comical characters goes on.

This is hugely enjoyable, tongue in cheek, writing, and highly entertaining. The actual story moves at pace, which is always the sign of a good story-teller. It has its fair share of twists and turns, and Nixon manages to make the baddies somehow likeable. The humour is dark. It is well written with pace and style. I found it great escapism and a fun read. Recommended.

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Reviewer:  Linda Regan

www.lindareganonline.co.uk