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Paths of Exile [Paperback]

Carla Nayland
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
RRP: 9.99
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Book Description

30 Jun 2011
Britain, 605 AD. When his homeland is defeated by a predatory neighbouring kingdom, Eadwine finds himself on the run for his life. Homeless, penniless and friendless, literally with a price on his head, he must evade his enemies, avenge his brother's murder and rescue his betrothed. Along the way, he will lose his heart to another woman and discover a shattering secret that challenges all the ideals he holds dear.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 310 pages
  • Publisher: Trifolium Books UK (30 Jun 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 095681042X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0956810427
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 14 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 716,215 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


A powerful novel. I was completely transported to the world of seventh century Britain. A strong new voice in the field of historical fiction; Carla Nayland has written a fine book. --Elizabeth Chadwick, award-winning author of The Wild Hunt, A Place Beyond Courage, The Greatest Knight and other novels

Carla Nayland pulls the curtain back on the little known period of seventh century Britain to reveal the fascinating world of Eadwine. Filled with unforgettable characters and wonderful historical detail, Paths of Exile is historical fiction at its most intriguing. --Michelle Moran, best-selling author of The Heretic Queen

Paths of Exile is an epic tale of battle, honour, loyalty and betrayal that is at once exquisitely entertaining and utterly convincing. Carla Nayland's prose is irresistible, luring the reader from the comforts of the 21st century into the harsh and often bloody reality of Saxon England . A triumphant debut that demands a sequel. --Russell Whitfield, critically acclaimed author of Gladiatrix --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Carla Nayland has a lifelong interest in history and archaeology and considered doing a degree in the subject in her spare time, until deciding it would be much more fun to explore it in historical fiction instead. She has degrees in Natural Sciences and Pharmacology from Cambridge and has worked for many years in corporate strategy, cost-benefit analysis, health economics and scientific writing. Carla is also a keen hillwalker, which is a bit of a problem as she lives in the flatlands of East Anglia. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Looking forward to reading more of Eadwine... 28 Mar 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
We are so short of historical fiction set in the period known as the 'dark ages' that it is always a pleasure to discover a new book, and this one does not disappoint. PATHS OF EXILE tells the story of Eadwine of Deira, over the crucial period when he was driven from his home by Athelferth of Bernicia. Eadwine is forced to flee with a small band of loyal companions and we see his struggle to survive and revenge his brother's murder. The dialogue is sharp and realistic and the pace is fast, but with quiet, thoughtful periods that add depth to the characters. Carla Nayland doesn't shrink from gritty descriptions of the harsh conditions of life at that time and we get a vivid picture of the chaos and uncertainty that must have followed defeat in battle and exile into uncertain territory. There is a gentle love story, with heart-breaking moments and some strong women characters. This is a 'rights of passage' story and the reader sees Eadwine as he matures and comes to make life-changing decisions and understand the true nature of loyalty. Carla Nayland's research is impeccable, but at the same time she does not overload us with historical detail. The picture we are given of people struggling to survive amongst warring cultures, land disputes and different languages, must surely have relevance to us today. I like the authors note at the end, which explains the difficulties of setting a story in this period and the historical basis of the story, as opposed to the rich imagination required to fill in the many gaps. I very much look forward to the sequel.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hwaet! A Novel About Saxons 1 Mar 2009
Why are so few novels about the so-called Dark Ages published nowadays? Alfred Duggan used to write them and Bernard Cornwell dabbles there occasionally with his Arthurian novels and his recent series set in the time of King Alfred. It was a pivotal period in English history: from the end of Roman Britain, and into the Anglo-Saxon age, an era of conflict and culture clash with shifting frontiers, divided loyalties, danger, idealism, heroics and high tragedy, far from the popular image of thud and blunder, mud and middens, as Carla Nayland shows us in her new novel, Paths of Exile. And on top of all that, so little is known of the period that the novelist has exhilarating scope for the imagination in the big gaps between the lines of the scant but often vivid sources.

Paths of Exile is set in what is now Northern England at the beginning of the 7th century AD. Aethelferth, king of Bernicia (roughly modern Northumberland) has invaded the neighbouring kingdom of Deira (approximately today's Yorkshire), and defeated its ruler Aelle and his son and heir Eadric. Eadric's devoted younger brother Eadwine comes too late to the rescue and believes Eadric has been treacherously murdered. Eadwine, homeless and lordless, the worst predicament for an Anglo-Saxon man, nevertheless vows to avenge his brother's death and sets out to find the mysterious assassin as well as rescuing his betrothed in the terrible knowledge that Aethelferth has sworn to kill him in thanks to the gods for victory.

Thus begins an exciting, tautly-plotted tale that's action-packed thriller, murder mystery, tragedy and romance all rolled into one and set in an authentic landscape I can see and touch and feel.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Dark Age Historical Fiction 26 Mar 2009
Edwin of Northumbria was one of the greatest Monarchs of early Anglo-Saxon England.Carla Nayland`s novel beautifully tells the story of his years in exile from his Kingdom of Deira and how he is pursued by his nemesis Aethelferth of Bernicia who has overrun his Kingdom and slain many of his family.
The Authoress is a brilliant storyteller who knows the difficult and arguable 6th/7th Century period very well.Though there is both action and romance in the story, the book dosent have page upon page of battle description or romantic liason,just the right mixture of action,drama,supsense,romance,humour etc.The characters are highly believable and conduct themselves as would a Heathen Angle,Pictish warrior or Brythonic King.
There are so many nice touches for the followers of this era
Carla Nayland is a name you will certainly be hearing a lot more from,highly anticipating the sequel!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Reality history 26 Feb 2009
I don't often find fiction interesting but "Paths of Exile" had me hooked and I read it in three large instalments; it has everything. It is historical fiction, although of a period about which little is clearly known, so while the general scenario is sound (a 7th century son of the king of what is now Yorkshire finds, after a battle, that he is now the heir to the throne but unable to stay in the kingdom until he can gather support to return) individual events are open to imagination. If you are not interested in that period as such, it may be read as pure fiction; if you are, as I am, you can take it as a plausible series of events, and I found the interaction of pagan English and Christian Welsh particularly intriguing. More than the politics of the time, however, there are male/female relationships both of a happy and of a disappointing nature, a strong illustration of how a band of friends support each other in adversity and some humour.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A window into Dark age Britain.
I thoroughly enjoyed this well written novel and look forward to the sequel. This is no dry history book, the characters are wonderfully convincing as is the world they live in. Read more
Published 17 months ago by L R
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable read
This is a book that's hard to put down. Good descriptions, beleivable characters who you feel for (even though many are a little stereotypical). Read more
Published 21 months ago by RobsWorld
5.0 out of 5 stars A fresh and vivid novel
I have very little interest in this period and I read Paths of Exile solely because I know the author. Read more
Published on 2 Nov 2011 by Mr. M. J. Dean
5.0 out of 5 stars A gripping tale
This evocative work transports you into a world of dangerous conflicts, set in the changing times of the seventh century, and with a sharp sense of danger. Read more
Published on 15 Nov 2010
5.0 out of 5 stars A gripping tale
This evocative work transports you into a world of dangerous conflicts, set in the changing times of the seventh century, and with a sharp sense of danger. Read more
Published on 15 Nov 2010
5.0 out of 5 stars A path well worth following
Paths of Exile follows the back-to-the-wall story of Eadwine (Edwin), a Saxon atheling on the run after his family is wiped out and his kingdom overrun. Read more
Published on 10 Nov 2010 by Alistair Forrest
5.0 out of 5 stars Paths of Exile
excellent novel set in early Saxon Britain ...this fascinating period of history .Well researced but with a strong story line. Read more
Published on 12 Mar 2010 by Togski
5.0 out of 5 stars Sevara lives?!
Descartes wrote (Les Discours de la methode - 1637) that "the reading of good books is like a conversation with the best men of past centuries . . . Read more
Published on 2 Dec 2009 by A. Morgan
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