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Renegade (Insurrection Trilogy) [Hardcover]

Robyn Young
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
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Book Description

30 Aug 2012 Insurrection Trilogy


What if the only hope you had of defeating your greatest enemy was to bend your knee and swear allegiance to him - then join his fight against your own people?

King Edward of England marches on Scotland, his campaign to unite the British Isles under one crown inspired by an Arthurian prophecy. He has already crushed Wales; now he needs only to find the Staff of St Malachy, symbol of Irish nationhood, to achieve his implacable desire.

One man alone can thwart Edward's plan. Leaving his war-torn home, Robert Bruce has sailed to Ireland, determined to find the Staff and keep it out of Edward's hands. His veins run with the blood of kings and his destiny to fulfil his family's claim to the throne of Scotland burns his mind.

But on the run through the wild country, hunted by a relentless assassin, Robert seems a long way from achieving his ambition. And there are other eyes on Scotland's crown, old enemies gathering against him.

This is a game of conquest, power and treachery, and Robert finds that to survive he must first abandon everything he holds dear. He was always prepared to die on the battlefield - but what else must he sacrifice to keep his hopes alive?


RENEGADE is a dazzling story of conspiracy and divided loyalties, battle and betrayal, and a superb portrait of the medieval world.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (30 Aug 2012)
  • Language: Unknown
  • ISBN-10: 0340963670
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340963678
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 15.2 x 4.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 35,157 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Robyn Young was born in Oxford and grew up in the Midlands and a fishing village in Devon, during which time she won awards for poetry and edited a regular page in a regional newspaper. After hitchhiking to Brighton at 19, she worked as a festival organiser, a music promoter and a financial advisor. She wrote two novels before gaining a Masters in Creative Writing at the University of Sussex.

Her first published novel, BRETHREN, went straight into the Sunday Times top ten, where it remained for five weeks, becoming the bestselling hardback debut of the year. It entered the New York Times top twenty on publication in the US and was named book of the year by German newspaper Bild. Her second novel, CRUSADE, reached number 2 and REQUIEM completed the trilogy. In 2007, Robyn was named one of Waterstone's twenty-five 'authors of the future', judged by a panel of one hundred industry insiders who were asked to nominate the authors they believed would contribute the greatest body of work over the next quarter century.

The inspiration for Robyn's new bestselling trilogy, which began in 2010 with INSURRECTION and continued in 2012 with RENEGADE, was inspired by a research trip to Scotland and is based on the life of Robert Bruce. The third novel, KINGDOM, will be published in 2014 in the month of the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn.

Alongside writing novels, Robyn has collaborated on a WWII screenplay. Her novels have been published in 22 countries in 19 languages and together have sold almost 2 million copies.

Product Description


Robyn Young has done it again with her sequel to INSURRECTION. With characteristic panache, Young carves a passionate route through the troubled, complex, divided and divisive times of Bruce and Wallace that makes sense of the many-folded treacheries, the back-stabbing and the coat-turning. She weaves the awe and magic of ancient relics with the bloody pragmatism of Edward's murderous army to create a glorious, bloody, passionate history that will appeal to fans of Philippa Gregory's Red Queen as much as to those who love Bernard Cornwell's Azincourt. (Manda Scott, internationally bestselling author of the Boudica series)

Robyn has a wonderful skill. She goes behind the history to the roots of legends and stories to pull up ever more convincing detail. In this book she goes to the beginning of the myths of the four nations that make up Britain. There is the Scottish Stone of Scone, the English Sword Curtana, the Crown of Arthur from Wales, and from Ireland, the Staff of Malachy. According to prophecy, when these are all gathered together, the Kingdom of Britain shall be once more at peace . . . This book is gripping, exciting, and written with a swift, tense pace that grabs the reader and doesn't let go. It's the very best in modern historical writing, and Robyn is here at the peak of her abilities. (Michael Jecks)

It is not by luck or accident that Robyn Young has become one of the most successful and respected historical fiction authors writing today . . . In her Insurrection Trilogy Young has taken on a challenge worthy of a medieval knight . . . Not only has she taken on the quest to bring such monumental figures as Robert Bruce, William Wallace, and King Edward Longshanks, back to glorious, feuding life, Young has filled them with humanity and inner conflict. These are not heroes or villains but rather men full of doubt and envy, passion and ambition; men just as capable of self-sacrifice, loyalty and love as they are of engaging in slaughter . . . In RENEGADE, Robyn Young's ability, passion and meticulous study combine to create a rich, colourful and 'living' historical tale that will wholly satisfy the reader . . . A wonderful tale, superbly told. (Giles Kristian, author of the Raven series)

A gripping new historical novel . . . an epic tale of greed, intrigue and war, set against a wild landscape (The Lady)

The best historical fiction doesn't just recreate the past, it speaks to the present. Robyn Young has the knack of finding subjects that resonate. (The Big Issue)

Robyn Young writes smart history beautifully. From the first page, I was captivated by her descriptions of scenes, people and emotions . . . The detail that Robyn Young brings to the history is remarkable. It mixes here, just a little, with a slight air of mystery - Edward's aspirations to be a new Arthur, the staff and the other royal relics, the witch banished to the outskirts of a town, the foretold destiny of Robert Bruce . . . RENEGADE is an enjoyable read with enormous depth and detail, the result of Robyn Young's intricate historical research and knowledge and her considerable talent as a storyteller. (

Immaculately researched and carefully written, evoking a very particular - and largely unexplored - time and place. The fights are sensational. (Daily Telegraph)

It is so graphic you can immediately put yourself there, imagining the faces and the clash of weapons. It also elaborates on the historical context and fleshes out the characters. It draws you in and is a compelling novel you cannot put down. So much research must have gone into the book; the detail is incredible. I enjoyed it so much. (The BBC Radio 2 Simon Mayo Book Club)

The learning is never cumbersome, a deft trick when describing medieval warfare (Scotsman)

This is a big book, and the trilogy a huge project to undertake. From the evidence so far, Young's fans will not be disappointed...brings to life one of [history's] most enigmatic characters. (Daily Mail)

A cracking plot and charismatic characters are set against the convincingly researched background of the violent, gory Anglo-Scottish civil wars (Saga)

Richly worked and captivating . . . an epic story of war, intrigue and heroism (Good Book Guide on BRETHREN)

This tale captures the struggles of a tumultuous time (Australian Daily Telegraph)

An outstanding contemporary writer (Kate Mosse on Robyn Young)

Superbly written with pace and great attention to detail (Historical Novels Review)

Book Description

The epic new historical novel from the author of the million-copy bestselling BRETHREN trilogy.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Renegade 21 Sep 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A very good read. I thoroughly enjoyed this second book in the the Bruce trilogy.
What I particularly like is the objectiveness with which Robyn Young approaches her subject. What we dont get is the Braveheart approach - heroic Scottish and evil English. What we do get is fact and fiction seamlessly inter woven to produce a great book with a balanced approach. I love the characters, love the plots and counter plots, never quite knowing who will support who or for how long their support will last. Cant wait for the next book to complete the story.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great stuff 30 Aug 2012
Renegade is the second book of Robyn's Insurrection Trilogy.

We find Robert Bruce in Ireland after resigning the Guardianship of Scotland. He is a traitor to the English crown and has betrayed his friends and fellow Knights of the Dragon. He is searching for the last mythical treasure of Britain, The Staff of Jesus. If he can find it before the English he believes he can use it as a bargaining tool in his dealing with Edward I but European politics intervene and threaten to place his old enemy John Balliol back on the throne of Scotland.

If this happens Bruce knows he will lose everything, so he has to make a tough decision. To survive, he has to turn his back on everything he holds dear and betray his friends and allies by entering the camp of Scotland's greatest enemy. As Scotland desperately fights for its life against the invading English, Bruce must bide his time and survive the suspicions of the English and the enmity of his follow Scots in his bid for the throne of Scotland.

I have to admit that I didn't know a lot about this period of history and as a diehard Englishman, Bruce isn't one of my favourite people but Robyn has woven a excellent story and it held my attention from page one.

One of the great strengths of this book is the great list of characters. It is quite hard to admire many of the men from this period, they were obsessed with their estates and wealth and would sacrifice their ideals and oaths to preserve them but Young's Edward I is majestic and terrifying in equal measure. The rebel leader William Wallace is a man of honour and a devil on the battlefield and even Bruce, the breaker of oaths is written with great sympathy.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
At the turn of the 14th century, Edward I, the legendary castle-builder and conqueror of Wales, has Scotland on his mind and it is almost in his grasp. William Wallace has done his worst and is now on the continent while Balliol, Comyn and Bruce - all contenders to the Scottish throne - are locked in a rivalry from which only Edward can benefit. However, Robert Bruce is no fool and he decides upon a different and more dangerous course.

Renegade is the second in Robyn Young's planned trilogy on Robert Bruce. The fact that I knew little about Robert Bruce before and that I hadn't read the first novel, Insurrection (Insurrection Trilogy), mattered not a jot. Robyn Young writes smart history beautifully. From the first page, I was captivated by her descriptions of scenes, people and emotions. The cast is large and there is a movement in the novel as we follow Robert from Ireland to Scotland and to the English Court at Westminster.

The pace of Renegade is considered, like a well-conceived plan. In the beginning, we follow Robert's mission to recover a hidden relic, the staff of Jesus, from a mysterious derelict monastery in the centre of a lost lake in southern Ireland. When he, and the staff, are captured by one of the many quarrelsome lords of Ireland and Scotland, Ulster, Robert begins to hatch his plot that will take the game to Edward, that most cunning and martial of kings, despite the heavy cost to himself. And so we follow Robert on his path, sometimes in battle or in a skirmish, sometimes engaged in more intimate struggles with his suspicious friends at the English Court or with his reluctant young bride.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Renegade 17 Sep 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
As a Scot I was apprehensive of any one not of our culture who could give an unbiased and differnt view on the subject but the Author manages to show both sides of the story and has added a good deal of background of the era to make this a good read ROLL ON PART 3
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 8 Jun 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Continues where Insurrection Vol. 1 left off - great read, kept me interested all the way through and has set up the final edition of the trilogy.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pacy and thrilling 30 Aug 2012
Renegade surprised me as much as the first book of the trilogy (Insurrection), and I'll explain why in a minute.

This story picks up where Insurrection left off, with the Bruce having made the decision that the crown of Scotland will be his. While Insurrection told the tale of Bruce's youth and formative years and the events that made him who he is, in Renegade he is now a grown man. This book moves the story on and tells the tale of how that young man moves from self-imposed exile to build a stairway to the greatest power in Scotland.

Two things unsettled me to begin with. Firstly is knowing that the story begins with the Bruce in Ireland in a self-imposed exile, having given up the guardianship of Scotland. Seemed like a backward step, whatever the motive, and took the action somewhere I wasn't sure about. Secondly, the blurb on the back cover states that Bruce will, in this book, be forced to ally with his enemy (likely meaning King Edward of England.) This irritated, given how much you really don't want that to happen, and given the fact that this had also already happened once in the first book.

I needn't have worried. The section in Ireland is just as fascinating as the sections in Scotland and England and proceeds at good pace. And the submitting to Edward? Well it jarred to begin with, but soon settled into seeming perfectly appropriate and normal. In fact, given Robert's history with the English nobles from the first book, it was almost like returning home.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A first class read, could not put in down.
Published 3 days ago by Neil Harris
1.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't read the first one.
As above, I didn't get this far, but the heavy going of the first episode of the trilogy defeated me.
Published 1 month ago by Alison Young
5.0 out of 5 stars Must read
Great book to read. Keeps you interested from the first page all the way to the end of the book.
Published 1 month ago by JEFFERS
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read
Book gave life to historical characters and provides an excellent insight to life in early 13th century Britain. Robyn Young keeps you interested throughout.. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Andrew Mason
2.0 out of 5 stars Not for me
This was a ok read but felt it did not bring enough for me to get entice and enchanted by the characters and story often jumping and lacking a decent rhythm. Read more
Published 3 months ago by James O Ayliffe
5.0 out of 5 stars ROBYN YOUNG IS A HERO
I have loved all Robyn Young's books, They are impressively researched, and contain sufficient historical detail to satisfy any history nerd (that would include me). Read more
Published 3 months ago by JANE WILSON
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book
Excellent book I have the previous books by Robyn Young....
Looking forward to getting a quite moment to read it...
Published 3 months ago by Brian Kinley
5.0 out of 5 stars Renegade
Robyn Young has written another brilliant story. The fact it's based on real events makes it even better. One of those books you can't put down.
Published 4 months ago by Brian Millar
5.0 out of 5 stars Renegades A time of Robert the Bruce
Renegades is explicit in it's capture of the readers imagination,whilst reading renegades you are transported to a time of deception,camaraderie,a time of unrest and... Read more
Published 4 months ago by john kane
5.0 out of 5 stars addicted
I would defiantly recommend this book , you will have to read insurrection before reading this but don,t hesitate. Robyn Young books are addictive.
Published 4 months ago by Donna Roberts
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