The Pagan Lord-Bernard Cornwell

The Pagan Lord
Bernard Cornwell
Harper, Jan 7 2014, $27.99
ISBN: 9780061969706

In 899, King Alfred the Great dies. His son Edward becomes the monarch of a land at war between the Saxons and the Danes. Several like Uhtred the Pagan warlord were in favor when Alfred ruled Wessex only to find themselves in trouble with Edward on the throne as the new King of the Saxons purges Danish influence. This is made clear to Uhtred after a particular violent incident in which Alfred would have applauded him while Edward declares him outlaw.

Fleeing the monarch’s wrath, Uhtred turns home to take back Bebbanburg. His brave inane action places him in the midst of war between the Danes and Saxons. Feeling comfortable in combat, Uhtred plans to strike back at those who outlawed him regardless of what happens to Britain especially those people subject to Danish control.

This is a great tenth century historical that centers on competing multiple cultures (Danes vs. Saxons and Christians vs. Pagans) fighting for control of England. The premise is built from the hypothesis that much, if not all of the island, could have become Scandinavian as easily as it became Saxon. Fans of the Saxon Tales (see Death of Kings) will appreciate this strong entry as Uhtred’s angry acrimonious aims impact the world around him

Harriet Klausner

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