Beginning with Alexander's childhood in Macedonia with his abusive father, tyrannical King Philip and his overbearing mother Olympias - educated by Aristotle and trained in the military training - he develops the fierce character, strength, and ambition to overthrow his abusive father and take the crown. Meanwhile, in the wilds of the Siberian steppe, Alestria is queen of the Amazons - the tribe of female warriors who dominate this vast land at the edge of the known world. Switching between the distinct voices of Alexander, Alestria, and Tania (the queen's loyal follower and confidante), Shan Sa brings the reader to the center of harsh physical and emotional battles. After Alexander conquers and unifies all of ancient Greece and Egypt and sets out to the Orient to conquer his rival, King Darius of Persia, Alexander and Alestria first encounter each other on the battlefield; surprised to find that his adversary is a woman, Alexander is instantly smitten: her hair is long and black, her body muscular and bronzed, and her skin scarred from years of battle. And at last, this independent woman who had renounced men has found a reason to leave her tribe. This book is beautifully translated by Adriana Hunter (who also translated the critically acclaimed "Empress").