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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Historical fiction at its best, 29 Sep 2011
By 
JPS - See all my reviews
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Storm of Arrows is book 2 of the "Tyrant" series and it is every bit as good as book 1. Although it is a continuation of book 1 and it is better to read them sequentially, it could nevertheless stand alone - which is not very frequent in series. It was a wonderful read two years ago and I haven't changed my mind after re-reading it a second time. Given the comments already made on this book, I will mostly refrain from summarizing the story and concentrate on a few (of the very many!) things I liked when reading it.

Christian Cameron exhibits the same qualities as in "Tyrant": super and very realistic battles, in-depth knowledge of the historical period and fascinating descriptions of characters. Everything "feels" real. The real "tyrant" here, in both the historical and the modern sense of the term is Alexander (and not Kineas, although he does initially become Tyrant of Olbia). This in itself is an interesting theme and contrast with book 1 in which Alexander initially appears as the laughting, youthfull, charismatic and reckless "boy-king".

As in book, the author has based his story on a less well known episode of Alexander's campaigns: his conquest of part of the current Central Asia and of modern Afghanistan and the curious fact that the Conqueror reached the furthest of the rivers but went no further and turned back. However, this is anything but a "remake" of one of Pressfield's books. The focus is in fact different. The story is told from the viewpoint of Kineas, who, with his band of Greek horse and his wife's Skythian warriors moving East to help the other Skythian tribes stop the "monster" (Alexander) from conquering the "sea of Grass".

Even the author's interpretation - that Alexander was checked (if not beaten) and was turned back - is quite plausible, although some historians may disagree with it. In fact some modern historians, while acknowledging his military talents, have shown that he was not quite as invincible as his (excellent and ruthless!) propaganda tended to portray him. This also comes out well in the book and may also be further developed in Cameron's future book (or books?) on Alexander (at least I hope it will).

Another strong point is the picture it gives of the relations and tensions between Alexander's Macedonian generals and how they interacted with him. Alexander's boyhood friend and favorite is depicted as some kind of rather untalented arch-villain, which is perhaps a bit exagerated. Anyway, they were a though, hyper-competitive, ruthless and (mostly) unscrupulous bunch of "alpha males", as we might call them today. To keep them in check, Alexander obviously had to be stronger, more ruthless and more cunning than the rest of the pack.

As for Book 1, I very much hope that you will like this one at least as much as I did...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Author on amazon, 11 Jun 2011
By 
Parm (A bookshop near you) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Tyrant: Storm of Arrows (Tyrant 2)
Kineas, the Athenian cavalry commander, has come a long way since being dismissed from the army of Alexander and vengefully exiled by his own city. Together, his mercenary force and their Scythian allies have defeated a mighty Macedonian army at the Ford of the River God, and his adopted city of Olbia is now free once more. But his destiny will not allow him to enjoy the fruits of victory for long. Far to the east, at the farthest edge of the Sea of Grass, Alexander is threatening to crush the Scythian hordes once and for all. The Lady Srayanka of the Cruel Hands, the Scythian warrior-princess who spurned a king's love to be at Kineas's side, is pledged to take her tribe east to help stop 'the monster' -and Kineas knows he has no choice but to follow, even if it means embracing the violent death in battle that he has seen prefigured in countless dreams. But long before he can confront the might of Alexander's army alongside his beloved Srayanka, he must undertake an epic journey, of breathtaking daring, taking an army through hundreds of miles of hostile terrain - towards his own appointment with fate.

I defy anyone to read this book and not be moved by the characters contained in its pages, book 2 fills out so much of the missing background of the supporting cast, but also brings us closer to the main characters of Kineas and Srayanka, the descriptions of the sea of grass at times are almost poetic, so much so that this is not just an epic journey for Kineas, but also for the reader. this book is not to be missed.

(Parm)
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still not your average historical novel..., 12 April 2009
By 
Robert N. Sulentic (Philadelphia, PA USA) - See all my reviews
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Christian Cameron continues his story of Kineas, the Athenian cavalryman and his troop in "Storm of Arrows". As if Kineas' previous exertions were not enough, he now marches a small army from the black sea to the Caspian sea, sails across that, and marches further to the Oxus river, something nobody really wants to do now, nevermind 2400 years ago, all to help the Scyths fight against Alexander, who Kineas once served.

Cameron has managed to successfully intergrate the challenges and problems such an undertaking entails into his story without it derailing the narrative. Also, Cameron fills out the back-stories of several of the supporting characters in Kineas' band of brothers, and in doing so, underlines the dangers of life in the ancient world and how men's destinies aren't always what you'd wish them to be.

Another superior effort. Give it a read.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's all Greek to me., 12 April 2009
By 
Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog "Falcata T... - See all my reviews
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I arrived late to the camp of Christian Cameron when I only got round to his original novel in June (when it was released in January) last year. Swiftly spotting my original error with the quality of writing of the first piece I made a note on my calendar of the release of the second tale in the series and thus more or less mugged the posty when he tried to deliver this tale.

As a fan of historical fiction you'll generally find me gripped in the earlier histories as I'm fascinated with the warcraft as well as the strategies and emotional context of the times, here Christian delivers everything in spades that really does give the reader a cracking story along with all the action they can handle. A true joy to read and a book that I'm sure will impress that historical lover in your life. However don't make the error of bypassing the original as without it, some of the events won't have quite the same impact.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A modern classic, 10 Nov 2009
By 
A. W. Vance (Bristol, UK) - See all my reviews
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This, and the first book Tyrant, constitute an absolute modern classic, an epic following battle, death, revenge and intrigue. You can just smell the bowels opening at the moment of death in battle. Comfortably sits alongside Cornwell & Iggulden.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can't stop thinking about it., 27 Feb 2009
By 
B. S. Peck (UK) - See all my reviews
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Giving nothing away i think this is one of the best books i have read. i read the first one which was great so i had to buy the second one. some people may find the book slow moving, but i didnt is has all your emotions going whether it be sadness or others. from the ending the book will leave you in a undeniable state but then you will feel shocked. It is a must buy for all but make sure you read the first one.
I finished the book a week ago and im still contemplating what happened now.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Greek tragedy, 29 Nov 2010
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If you want to submerge yourself in the ancient greek world your two best options are Steven Pressfield and Christian Cameron. Both write in an incredibly detailed and authentic feeling style, both create genuinly 'real' people whose life stories have the power to move.

If I had to find faults with this book it was in the very slow pace in the first half and the at times over writing of the dialogue and interactions of the central warrior band which just got a bit tiresome at times. Yes we really got to know the personalities and this pays dividends later when the action starts but I was tempted to start speed reading sections.

Those points out of the way I really enjoyed this book! I read the first in the series a couple of years ago which was very similar and had thought to give it a miss due to it's 'slow burner' nature. However was completely blown away by 'Killer of men' by the same author and needed another fix so decided to return to this series. Very glad I did now.

For those unblooded in the series it is the tale of former Alexander follower and cavalry officer Kineas now exiled from his home city and serving as a mercenary. He finds himself initially employed by the Asian city of Olbia but the events of book 1 see him become leader of the city and fall for an Amazonian warrior Queen of a Scythian tribe. Whilst at the same time fighting one of the armies of his former master and hero, Alexander.

Kineas also discovers he has the ability to visit the spirit world and is to a degree a seer of visions and prophet! As we move into book 2, I found this got a little annoying mainly because Kineas sees his own death and seems determined to walk towards it whatever!

But, but I am getting negative again which I didn't intend to. The book gathers pace as it goes on and there are a few epic battles and Cameron puts you convincingly in the middle of it and makes you a part of Kineas little elite band of slightly dysfunctional warriors! Add to this the machinations of Alexanders court, the internal struggles of the tribes populating the sea of grass and a variety of power hungry despots who are liitered throughout the book and it becomes a highly engaging second half!

Won't give anything else away re the plot but end reaches a story junction and I will have to get the third to see which direction the author took. It's good stuff and one of those stories that stays with you for a few days after putting it down.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Christian Cameron's books, 25 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Tyrant: Storm Of Arrows (Kindle Edition)
This author appeals to my wish for a rollocking story that I can pick up and put down at whim

My only criticism is that with a prolific author there is insufficient guidance as to story time lines as to which book to read next on the Kindle something to be sorted and also a means of marking a book read as I buy a number at a time.

There is nothing more irritating than finding that yo are reading a book out of order particulalry when they are short stories on a continuing theme
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good But Not An Easy Read, 5 May 2014
By 
J. Chippindale (England) - See all my reviews
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I came to this book late, it having been published in 2009 and did not realise until I had started reading it that it was the second in a series Tyrant (Book 1, 2008). I am not sure whether it is my own fault for not reading the first book, but I found this book difficult to get into. At the start of this book there were too many references to what went on in the first one and there are too many characters to keep track of, some of them with virtually unpronounceable names (maybe it is just my age catching up with me). It took me almost a hundred pages before I began to understand what had gone before in a quite complex storyline.

However, I am always loath to give up on a book and once I got past the initial stage of shuffling backwards and forwards through the pages to make sense of what I was reading I really began to enjoy the book, although I still found the number of characters in the book difficult to keep track of with any certainty.

Set at the time of Alexander the Great, the book tells the story of Kineas of Athens who once led the Athenian cavalry in Alexander's army. He now has a chance to turn his back on war and the battles that have left many of his comrades and friends from his youth dead or maimed. However his lover the Lady Srayanka now carrying his child is a Scythian warrior princess and Alexander is poised to destroy the Eastern Scythians. Srayanka knows she has little or no choice but to side with her clansman. Kineas knows that he has no choice but to follow her and face his one time hero Alexander.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Tyrant Storm of Arrows, 16 April 2014
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This review is from: Tyrant: Storm Of Arrows (Kindle Edition)
Have just discovered Cameron and am reading through his back list. So far am very impressed - well drawn characters and exciting, accurate battle scenes.
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Tyrant: Storm Of Arrows
Tyrant: Storm Of Arrows by Christian Cameron
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