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Knights of the Hawk (The Conquest) [Paperback]

James Aitcheson
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
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Book Description

22 May 2014 The Conquest (Book 3)

The third novel in the compelling Conquest series (1066: The Bloody Aftermath) from the author of Sworn Sword. Perfect for fans of Bernard Cornwall, Simon Scarrow and Ben Kane.

AUTUMN, 1071. The struggle for England has been long and brutal. Five years after the fateful Battle of Hastings, only a desperate band of rebels in the Fens stands between King William and absolute conquest.

Tancred, a proud and ambitious knight, is among the Normans marching to destroy them. Once lauded for his exploits, his fame is now dwindling. He yearns for the chance to restore his reputation through spilling enemy blood.

But as the Normans’ attempts to assault the rebels’ island stronghold are thwarted, the King grows ever more frustrated. With the campaign stalling and morale in camp failing, he looks to Tancred to deliver the victory that will crush the rebellions once and for all.


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Knights of the Hawk (The Conquest) + The Splintered Kingdom (The Conquest) + Sworn Sword (The Conquest)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Arrow (22 May 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0099558297
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099558293
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.8 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,693 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

James Aitcheson was born in Wiltshire in 1985 and studied History at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, where began his fascination with the medieval period and the Norman Conquest in particular.

"Sworn Sword" is his first novel, and the first in the Conquest Series, featuring the knight Tancred and set in England during the tumultuous years that followed the Battle of Hastings in 1066. Tancred's adventures continue with "The Splintered Kingdom" and "Knights of the Hawk". James is currently working on his fourth novel.

Visit http://www.jamesaitcheson.com for all the latest news and information about James and his books, his official blog, and details of future signings and other events. Follow him on Twitter at @JamesAitcheson.

Product Description

Book Description

The third novel in the compelling Conquest series (1066: The Bloody Aftermath) from the author of Sworn Sword. Perfect for fans of Bernard Cornwall, Simon Scarrow and Ben Kane.

About the Author

James Aitcheson was born in Wiltshire and read History at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, where began his fascination with the medieval period and the Norman Conquest in particular. Knights of the Hawk is his third novel. For more about the author and his work visit his website at www.jamesaitcheson.com

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Third in an Excellent Series 19 May 2014
By J. Chippindale TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
James Aitcheson's writing style is free flowing and eminently readable. It is easy for the reader to understand that the author is extremely comfortable with the period of history that he is writing about. The story flows off the pages and maintains the interest of the reader throughout the book. No boring long passages or superfluous chapters from this author.

This is the third novel by James Aitcheson, and also the third one featuring Tancred a Dinant, an ambitious Norman knight. The first book Sworn Sword begins the story shortly after the conquest of 1066. Tancred's star is in the ascendancy. He has fought many times, and almost died at the hands of English rebels at Durham, where his lord is killed.

In the second book The Splintered Kingdom everything is going well for Tancred. His new lord, Robert Malet has granted Tancred lands on the Welsh Marches in payment for the services he has rendered and he is now a Lord in his own right, having a manor to live in and knights of his own to command.

In this the third book it is 1071, five years after the demise of Harold and Tancred's fortunes or lack of them have come full circle. Now almost penniless and with the trappings of fame fallen away, Tancred is marching with other Normans to quell the band of rebels hiding in the Fens. The rebels are the last vestiges of resistance to William the Bastard's total domination of England. What was expected to be a mopping up campaign turns out to be anything but, and Tancred's fortunes take yet another twist.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still original and still good... 3 Nov 2013
By JPS TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is "episode three" of Tancred's adventures, a half-Breton and half-Norman knight who has taken part in the invasion and conquest of England and, as this volume begins, is with the Norman army and King William besieging Ely and trying to root out Hereward the Wake and the last "insurgents" (as the Normans would have seen them, of course).

This in itself is rather original for the story (1066, Hereward the Wake and all that...) has generally been told "ad nauseam" from the "Anglo-Saxon" (or more accurately Anglo-Dane) side. I admit I was also initially a bit concerned after having read the synopsis and when ordering this book because, once again, we were going to be treated to the campaign and battles in the Fens, a topic that has already been flogged to death by a number of other authors. However, I need not have worried. Once again, James Aitcheson has managed to come up with a rather original and compelling story, even for this rather well-known episode. Once again also, he has made his characters come to life and "look and feel" real.

The campaign in the Fens and the assaults on Ely are rather well told, from the Norman perspective. William's initial assaults were indeed repulsed initially, and with great loss of life when they tried to storm the well-defended and near impregnable island surrounded by marshes and the sea. Their supplies were also been harassed, as shown at the beginning of the book. Their morale was low and King William was getting rather desperate as his frontal attacks failed one after another while supplies for his army were running out.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A different time brought to life 24 Oct 2013
By Parm TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
Review

Once again James Aitcheson well and truly knocks the ball out of the park, his latest book Knights of the Hawk is an action packed thriller. There are very few let up in the story for you to take a breath and pause, you literally find yourself flipping to the next page then the next, just one more page, just one more chapter, and then suddenly ...its 3am... how did that happen. totally lost in the world of Tancred.

I cant say he is the most likeable character, and in this book possibly even less so, but he is well written , and allows the reader a rare first person view of what it must have been like for the Normans having conquered this wild and proud land of Britain.

As usual the mix of fact and fiction is so well done, so blurred i really don't know where one start and the other ends. I always feel i have learned something important by the end of these books, even if its just how the British as they are today were formed into who they are. This period of our history is so wild, so varied, so violent, so action packed, so full of change. Never again would this land be conquered, so its so important to understand how it happened, and how we all formed together, how people like Tancred became British, something James Aitcheson does so well, with an obvious love of the towns and villages of old Britain, and what they must have seemed like so long ago.

Every time i read his books i feel transported back to that time, the sights sounds and smells sounds so clichéd in a review, but it really is a relevant comment for his writing, because he brings them all to life.

Another fantastic novel, i look forward to the next. Very highly recommended

(Parm)
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An enjoyable series gets even better 12 Nov 2013
By Kate TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
Five long battle-weary years have passed since the Battle of Hastings and Tancred, a Breton knight who won his reputation if not his fortune fighting by William of Normandy's side, has changed. In this, the third in James Aitcheson's fine Conquest saga, Tancred has moved further from his Norman and Breton roots. Now lord of Earnford in the Severn Valley he is beginning to think of England as home, his allegiances are becoming more complicated and his experiences of this new land are turning him into an increasingly fascinating hero.

In Sworn Sword (The Conquest Series) and The Splintered Kingdom (The Conquest Series), we watched Tancred's brutal fight to protect and avenge his lord, William Malet, while doing his duty by him. This most recently involved taking the sword to the men in the service of the Conqueror's most persistent rival, Eadger the Aetheling. In Knights of the Hawk Tancred's allegiance to the Malet family becomes much less straightforward and, despite his heroic efforts to beat William's English enemies from Ely and the fen marshes, Tancred is almost forced into becoming a knight with a personal mission of his own.

One of the great strengths of this series is the way in which Aitcheson brings to life the towns and landscapes of Britain as it was a thousand years ago. Saxon names are used (a full glossary is included) and this enables the reader to piece together a mysterious, ancient land which has tantalising touches of the familiar about it.
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