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The Blood of Alexandria (Aelric 3) Hardcover – 10 Jun 2010

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton; First Edition edition (10 Jun. 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340951168
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340951163
  • Product Dimensions: 16.1 x 23.5 x 4.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,504,673 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Richard Blake is a historian, broadcaster and university lecturer. He lives in Kent with his wife and daughter.

For Hodder & Stoughton, he has written the following six historical novels: Conspiracies of Rome (2008), Terror of Constantinople (2009), Blood of Alexandria (2010), Sword of Damascus (2011), Ghosts of Athens (2012), Curse of Babylon (2013). These have been translated into Spanish, Italian, Greek, Slovak, Hungarian, Indonesian, and Chinese.

He also writes as Sean Gabb. His latest novel written under this name, The Break, has been nominated for the 2015 Prometheus Award.

Product Description


'Fascinating to read, very well written, an intriguing plot and I enjoyed it very much.' (Derek Jacobi on CONSPIRACIES OF ROME)

'I can't resist recommending this first volume of a promised trilogy. Set during the last pangs of Imperial Rome, with a vivid account of the machinations of the early Church, it is well-informed, atmospheric and beautifully written.' (Literary Review on CONSPIRACIES OF ROME)

'It's simply the best historical novel I've ever read, perhaps short of C.S. Forester. It's a very great deal better than any of the ancient Roman detective novels I've seen.' (L. Neil Smith on CONSPIRACIES OF ROME)

Book Description

Alexandria is the setting for the third in the brilliant trilogy set in the dying days of the Roman Empire, featuring the most compelling anti-hero since Flashman.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Sianlover on 16 Jun. 2010
Format: Hardcover
I discovered Richard Blake in 2008. I am a big fan of 'Conspiracies of Rome', and I greatly enjoyed 'Terror of Constantinople'. When I heard there was another one on the way, I could barely wait. I was also more than a little apprehensive. Sequels (and sequels of sequels) are often increasingly disappointing. I had been lucky once with Mr Blake, but this was hardly a guarantee of his continued excellence. But I have now read 'Blood of Alexandria', and while I would be the first to say it is not in fact the best novel I have read, it is certainly the best historical novel I have read. Indeed, it is better even than his first, which I have come to prefer to the admittedly more richly-studied and sophisticated follow-up (possibly because it seems to me to be in some way "purer"). But what more of this one? Well, the best idea I can give you of it is to as you if you would like to know 7th century Alexandria. If you would, this is the book for you. Would you like to see the mummy of Alexander the Great? Would you like to see the Great Pyramid before the Arabs chose to deprive it of its limestone casing? Would you to see, hear, smell and taste a world that is long-dead, and may never have existed quite as depicted here, but which is presented with the utmost persausiveness and plausibility? Blake's knack for setting the scene is one of his greatest strengths. He has never been less than impressive in this respect, but here he excels himself: we are presented with a veritable rogue's gallery of disreputable but entirely credible characters. We are also left in no doubt that this is exactly how clever, ruthless people behave when plunged into an interlocking set of crises.Read more ›
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Ventura Angelo on 19 Feb. 2011
Format: Paperback
The new Emperor Heraclius appoints Aelric with the less than pleasant job of enforcing a new taxation system and re-allocation of the land in Egypt: this plunges our anti-hero in a lutulent mess as deep as the waters of the Nile. His friend and devout Christian Martin accompanies him in a labyrinthine maze of deceit and conspiracies, among shifty viceroys, devious generals, followers of the Old Faith, heretic pontiffs and rebellious landowners. A pleasure to read, as among the adventures and terrors, mob revolts and tricky expeditions, you notice a sharp satire of religion and of blind faith, christian and otherwise. Highly recommended!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 7 Aug. 2010
Format: Hardcover
The second novel for me by Richard Blake and one that I really devoured after finishing the first. As with the original, its beautifully written with a great excursion from modern times that's backed up with a seriously enjoyable writing style. Top notch entertainment and something of a guilty pleasure. I'll definitely seek out other titles by this author and I really want to see what he has in store for his characters in future excursions.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J.K. Currie VINE VOICE on 20 Jan. 2014
Format: Paperback
`Richard Blake' has trotted out a new Aelric novel annually for the last six years and I guess there may still be another four to come. `Blake' clearly understands his Classics and has good knowledge of the historical period in which Aelric performs his adventures, but it would be wrong, I think, to consider these novels historically sound as some reviewers have done. While there is a basic substratum of historical fact, i.e. the crisis of the Roman Empire in the Seventh Century and its transformation into the Byzantine Empire during the reign of Heraclius, all this is simply a framework for fantastic plots of a febrile imagination. Some might simply say the stories are a complete load of nonsense.

Of course, these are novels, not non-fiction text books, and strict historical accuracy is neither to be expected or attainable; suspension of belief is necessary for their enjoyment. However, to suspend disbelief over 500 pages is quite an ask, especially in a novel concerned with Byzantine Egypt which manages to incorporate near death experiences, She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed, a guest appearance of the author himself (when Aelric almost meets his maker!), a most irreverent relic pertaining to the infancy of Jesus and an episode of mass impaling which would have caused envy to Vlad the Impaler himself. The silliness is sublime.

`Richard Blake' just about pulls it off in my opinion. As the novel spirals into fantasy in the last 100 pages or so, it also elicited a few long and sustained bursts of incredulous laughter from this reader. I am assured that laughter prolongs life and health. So, thank-you, Mr `Blake'.
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