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on 6 March 2013
I loved the book, particulalry as it not only accounted for Haythams' story leading up to the events in Assassins Creed 3, but seeing Connor's life from the eyes of the templars is brilliant. Any AC fan out there, or even if you're new to the series, this is definately worth reading.
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on 6 February 2013
My biggest problem with AC3 was its protagonist, I found Connor a particularly drab character and longed for a different hero.

This novel served that purpose for me.

Gone is the apathetic Connor, in his place we follow Haytham Kenway, leader of the Templars in America.

Charting from his early life, this novel sees him grow from an ignorant boy to a loyal Templar and then ... well, I don't want to spoil it for you!!

Connor fans may be disappointed in the lack of his character but those out there who would have preferred the dry, sarcastic wit demonstrated by Haytham in the game will enjoy just how perfectly captured he is.

On a cautionary note, as someone mentioned before this should only be read after finishing the game as it spoils quite a chunk of it.
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on 13 November 2013
A very good read but a bit on the slow side, I was looking to read more bout Connor the next Assassin in terms series but was dismayed to learn it was about his father Haythem Kenway . The story did pick in places but was very slow in places and technology character s lack charisma l I keep their predecessor assassins, the lead assassin lacked the charm and he was to posh compared to the last books. I am great fan of the series but the plot was very blurred and all over the place. The line between the assassins and the temple's was extremely blurred and dense and the reader did not know who was the on whose side and what motives the lead characters had. A bit disappointing really.
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on 30 December 2012
In Assassin's Creed 3 I couldn't help but wish that we saw a lot more of Haytham- The opening sequence did nothing but tease and intrigue me! For those of you who didn't feel you got your Haytham fix, this is ideal.

I bought the Kindle Edition, and there were a few glaring mistakes here and there, sometimes quotations ran on, or words were spelled incorrectly- However, I could push this to one side because of how enjoyable the story was. Bowden perfectly captures Haytham's narrative voice, and I found it easy to imagine his voice actor narrating.

It isn't the best read I've had this year, but it is definitely enjoyable if you're a fan of the series
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on 1 April 2013
Loved the game, and the expectations about this book were different from the previous ones. Some twists that weren't explained within the game, were clarified now...

Great Book, Great game
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on 1 December 2013
This book is written from the perspective of Haytham Kenway, son of ACIV protagonist Edward Kenway, and father of ACIII protagonist Connor. Haytham is a templar, and it is an interesting read to read the events of ACIII from his perspective. It finishes off Edward's story and revels in his mysteries. Haytham is introduced to the Assassin V Templar war and chooses to side with the Templars because his rescuer, Reginald Birch was one. He ultimately fathers Connor, the actual protagonist of ACIII and a father v son battle ensues. The Kenway family is a fun but dysfunctional one as is presented in the novel spectacularly. A must read for any AC fan!
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on 3 February 2014
I really love the Assassins' Creed games, but had very low hopes for this book. I couldn't help but assume that a spin off novel from a video game, even one as well plotted as AC, would be predictable and badly written with one-dimensional characters. I bought the book for my boyfriend, but one bored afternoon I couldn't resist picking it up myself, and I was pleasantly surprised.

For me, Haytham was by far the most intriguing character in Assassins' Creed 3. Until then, it had all seemed a bit black and white, with evil Templars and good Assassins, then suddenly, there's this mysterious and sympathetic Templar who frees slaves, allies with Native Americans and stops the worst excesses of his colleagues. Plus, he's posh, English. well-dressed and from the eighteenth century - four big ticks in my book.

So firstly, I think the author made an inspired choice in focussing on Haytham rather than Connor, the games official hero. He really fills out the character with an intriguing personality and inspired back story. The writing and characterisation is pretty good throughout, and much better than I was expecting. It's told through Haytham's diary, and it mimics the style of eighteenth century diary writing quite effectively. While I'm sure this will be read almost universally by fans of the games, it could almost stand on its own merits as a general historical fantasy.

The book is at its best when the author is given free rein to create his own plot within the AC universe. I particularly loved the scenes in which Haytham is a young child in London in the 1730s, living with his very rich and respectable father, who fans will recognise as Edward Kenway, the pirate hero of the fourth game. The family dynamics are touching, and eighteenth century London is surprisingly accurately portrayed. I also enjoyed the later scenes of Haytham training with the Templars, which give a whole new perspective on everyone's favourite evil organisation.

Conversely, I thought the book was at its weakest when it rehashed scenes from the game. Firstly, I already knew what was going to happen, and secondly, the need to stick to canon seemed to diminish the author's imagination. Also, in a video game, it's easy to kill twenty people in quick succession and think nothing of it. When a book depicts the same scene and describes how many people the hero has killed or how quickly he recovers from terrible injuries, it feels quite bizarre and unrealistic. On the other hand, the later chapters worked quite well where they filled in the blanks and/or gave Haytham's perspective on Connor's adventures.

Two things to bear in mind for fans of Assassins' Creed 3 who are debating whether this is worth their time. Firstly, as I've already alluded to, it's very much focussed on Haytham. If you're mainly here for Connor, don't bother. Haytham doesn't even meet his mother until nearly 300 pages in, and his son gets barely twenty pages in total. Fine by me, but it might annoy some people.

Similarly, the games always have three interwoven story lines: battles between Templars and Assassins in some historical period, present day conspiracy theories and people using the animus, and all the weird flashbacks to "those who came before." The plot here is much more straightforward - it's a clear cut eighteenth century adventure story, told in diary form, with just the merest hint of fantasy, and no present day plot or ancient flashbacks. Again, I think that was probably the best approach, as I'm mainly a fan for the historical elements (it helps that Renaissance Italy and eighteenth century England are my two favourite periods), but if it's Abstergo and the pieces of Eden that really capture your imagination, you're going to be disappointed.

In conclusion, if you're a fan of Assassin's Creed 3 and want to fill in the blanks, and especially if you're a fan of eighteenth century history, this is a lot of fun and well worth a look.
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on 27 December 2013
well I must say I never read much before hell I have tonnes of books that I haven't touched but when I received this novel I read and enjoyed it gives allot of information too what happened before assassins creed 3 and much insight into haythams life things I didnt see in assassins creed 3 really enjoyed it and ended up buying the black flag one after reading it ::) if you are a fan of AC I would recommend reading theres lots of things I didnt know about haytham until I read this book. brilliant stuff. love assasins creed A+++++++++++++++++++++++++++
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on 4 July 2013
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book as I did the others. I didn't expect the whole book to be about Haytham however. Nevertheless, it was a pleasant surprise and it was great to read about Haytham from when he was young. It explained a lot about him which us gamers have been yearning for. The book explains his feelings for Connor and more importantly, how he became a Templar and the reasons behind Connor not knowing his father. I recommend the whole series to anyone who enjoyed playing the games, they are truly a compelling read.
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on 6 July 2013
This is probably the best of the Assassin's Creed novelisations, mainly because it focuses on Haytham's life history, rather than essentially being a transcript of the game. The story is interesting, and it gives another dimension to one of the major characters in the game. However, Bowden's writing style still feels a little too sparse, and the parts of the novel which focus on events that we see in the game feel a little stiff and awkward. Still, it's a valuable read for an Assassin's Creed fan and I enjoyed reading it.
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