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The Lantern Bearers (Eagle of the Ninth)

The Lantern Bearers (Eagle of the Ninth) [Kindle Edition]

Rosemary Sutcliff , Charles Keeping
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)

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Product Description


This is historical fiction at its best. Post Roman Britain comes alive in this novel. The characters are all believable and no matter how small a part they play they are complete-as is the plot-no strands are left loose. The Historicals Novels Review

Product Description

A tireless quest for revenge in this Carnegie Medal-winning book - the third part in Rosemary Sutcliff's outstanding The Eagle of the Ninth trilogy

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 436 KB
  • Print Length: 324 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0192755064
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; New Ed edition (3 Feb 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004KZOQT2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #58,455 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Rosemary Sutcliff was born in Surrey, the daughter of a naval officer. At the age of two she contracted the progressively wasting Still's disease, and hence spent most of her life in a wheelchair. Her first children's book was published in 1950, and from then on she devoted her time and talents to the writing of children's historical novels, which have placed her name high in the field of contemporary children's literature. Rosemary received an OBE in the 1975 Birthday Honours List.

Rosemary Sutcliff's novels about Roman Britain have won much critical acclaim. The best-known of these is her The Eagle of the Ninth trilogy, of which the second book in the trilogy, The Lantern Bearers, was awarded the 1959 Carnegie Medal.

Sadly, Rosemary died in 1992 at the age of 72.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
35 of 35 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
This story, which hints at the beginning of the Arthur myth, combines historical detail with a surprisingly complex and at times bleak portrait of a "hero" damaged by all that he has had to live through. The pace is fast, with the tale covering about 30 years in total. The author does not skirt around the implications to one person of living in a period of history marked by huge upheaval and conjures up life, love, death, war and betrayal on the brink of the Dark Ages so vividly that you can almost smell the woodsmoke. A fascinating, moving and challenging book.
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Possibly my favourite book for children 20 Dec 2007
This is not just for children, however, since Sutcliff never patronises her readership. It is an epic story, covering its hero's life from an idealistic young Roman officer, to a mature veteran, contemplating his adult son's future in post-Roman Britain.

As usual with Sutcliff's 'outsider' heroes, Aquila does not have an easy time! Sutcliff's heroes do not win glorious victories; instead they show a deeper heroism in what they endure, and they mature under adversity.
After the first few chapters, Aquila has lost everything - having deserted his legion in order to protect his family and home, within days his family is destroyed, leaving him without honour, and living first to rescue his sister (who has been carried off), and then for revenge. When even this is taken from him, he must decide what to do with his life...

Sutcliff is really able to capture the values and attitudes of her characters; there is never the jarring moment, as happens often in historical novels, where anachronistic attitudes intrude. Instead she takes us into the dark, and often savage world they inhabit. Don't expect easy answers then: this is a stirring, and exciting tale, but problems do not disappear, and real decisions have to be made. Aquila's relationships are dealt with in a mature manner - by this I do *not* intend code for explicit sexual references (there are none), but that there is no 'happy-ever-after' romance either.

Less bleak than some of Sutcliff's stories - Aquila does, in the end, find a measure of peace - the dark tone may mean that it is unsuitable for younger children.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The third and maybe the best 16 May 2010
The third, and maybe the best, of the Aquila family series set in Roman Britain. The Romans are almost a memory in a military sense. The legions are gone, and auxilliary troops are left. Vortigern is High King and has invited the Saxon wolf over the threshold to help defend against the Picts and northern raiders, and they demand a high price. Aquila has followed the family military trend and is a Decurion of Horse stationed at Rutupiae. His blind father Flavian is the custodian of the family farm. Aquila has a sister Flavia and they are very close in age and affection.
Then life falls apart, and Aquila is forced into a journey which leaves him hardened,embittered and searching for a place to be and a cause to fight and believe in. This story does not patronise young people and crosses the age barrier. We follow Aquila into his late thirties, the loyalties and relationships he forges in place of the old ones. We live the adventures he survives and the battles he fights. With Aquila we see the development of the boy and young man who may have been King Arthur - Artos Aurealanus. Superb and moving story telling.
The journey of Aquila continues in Sword at Sunset, which focuses on Artos.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Definatley a modern classic in children books. 7 Feb 2002
By A Customer
I'm a bit old to be really be reading this book, but I still really enjoyed it. Apart from the amazingly life-like characters there is some historic truth in Sutcliffs tales and it does show what people may have felt when taken over by an entirely foriegn group of people. It shows a society still steeped in the idea of honour and duty that surpasses any personnal problems, and in particular one mans struggle not only against an invading people but also against the person he has become. It sounds very deep and meaningful, but is infact very easy to read and definately worth reading by everyone who likes stories of unusual heros and hand to hand combat. A book children will always love.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better than The Eagle of the Ninth? 4 Mar 2011
The Lantern Bearers by Rosemary Sutcliff was first published in 1959, and in a remarkable testament to its appeal, it is still in print. It should also be noted that this is the novel that won the author the Carnegie Medal, a prestigious award for outstanding children's books. It's the third part of the loosely linked Roman Britain trilogy that began with The Eagle of The Ninth and continued with The Silver Branch. Readers are probably well aware that the first novel has been dramatized into a movie, The Eagle, which is currently opening and showing in cinemas all over the world.

Other reviewers have dealt with the storyline and Aquila, the tortured main character, so I won't go into an explanation of the plot.

The Eagle of the Ninth was one of the main influences in my choosing to write about Rome and its legions. I have read it many times, and although I cannot say why, the same cannot be said of the second two books. I recently read The Silver Branch for the second time specifically to review it, and while I enjoyed it greatly, I didn't think that it quite matched the first book in calibre. I expected that also to be the case with The Lantern Bearers. How wrong could I have been?

The Eagle of the Ninth fuelled my boyish imagination with pictures of stealing back an eagle standard from wild Scottish tribes, and to this day, I remember and enjoy and honour it for that. I had few childhood memories of The Lantern Bearers, however. Rereading it over the last few days was akin to reading it for the first time.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Afraid I thought it a bit dreary - nothing like as gripping as the 1st of the trilogy
Published 4 months ago by Gill M
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read for young adults and anyone who enjoys a good historical...
I first read this when I was at secondary school as I was learning Latin and wanted to know more about roman life. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Mrs. Elizabeth R. Ray
5.0 out of 5 stars Really good quality Folio Society book and binding
Bought for someone else and they were absolutely delighted at the really high quality binding and slip case. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Newbaker
5.0 out of 5 stars Roman Britain
Good read if you like books about the last days of the Roman Empire in Britain. Gives a good feel to the period
Published 12 months ago by arelle
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic
Rosemary Sutcliffe is a great writer who brings the Romano-Celtic world to life, making it real, with convincing characterisation and a poetic sensibility. Read more
Published 17 months ago by wolfgranny
5.0 out of 5 stars Roman Invasion
I have read this and the other three volumes many times ---- starting at school -- now in to Simon Scarrow Under the Eagle
Published 18 months ago by Andrew
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
I love the way the author writes. She takes the reader into the story straight away. The characters are so well defined they become very real and the story moves quickly. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Alicia Clark
5.0 out of 5 stars Great seller
Fast despatch, good quality product, well packed, will be pleased to buy again from you, many thanks for completing this transaction.
Published 18 months ago by Mr. ALAIN C. FENN
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent read
For people who like to mix fact with fiction, this is the one for you. The story is one you can believe, and the telling of it is very well written.
Published 18 months ago by jean newson
5.0 out of 5 stars One of Sutcliff's best
I always loved this novel,which I read as an adult. Delighted to find it for a snip as a Kindle book. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Amazon Customer
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