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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars This "Mary Sue" is not for fans of historical accuracy!!, 10 May 2004
This review is from: The Conqueror (Mass Market Paperback)
"Mary Sue": a story in which the author (usually a female) puts too much of her own wishes/daydreams and physical attributes (or wannabe attributes) into a tale, allowing herself to become the heroine that "saves" the hero and--of course--wins his love in the end.
And a "Mary Sue" is exactly how to describe this book! It had me rolling my eyes so often I thought they were going to spin right out of my head! Much of the plot was laughable, with Roxanne needing rescuing far too many times, and Alexander's near obsessive attraction to her was simply unbelievable. Without revealing any spoilers, I will say that the author clearly projected herself into her Xena-like heroine, and stretched all plausibility by not only making her a fair-skinned redhead (like herself), but by also giving her far too much importance in Alexander's life, putting her front and centre into very significant events where the real Roxanne probably played no role. (Of course, in all fairness, without this inflated role we would have a rather boring Roxanne-related book.) More often than not her Alexander wasn't a terribly likeable character, and I only found myself reading it to the end just to find out how many times the author would change known historical facts just to suit her plot. This is not a book I would place on an Alexander 'must-read' list, except for *really* die-hard romance fans, as the author did follow the usual schlock romance formula.
And Alexander was a blonde, so what's with the brunette on the cover?? Just one more historical inaccuracy that had me shaking my head!
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 25 Oct 2008 18:54:05 BDT
Last edited by the author on 25 Oct 2008 18:57:52 BDT
I am curious as to how many hours this reader has spent studying the times and exploits of Alexander the Great. As a storyteller, I don't expect all readers to enjoy my books, but I do my research. I own a large collection of histories, and I spent twenty odd years in research before I wrote the first line. Bactria and Sogdiana still endure under different names, and fair-skinned, blue-eyed natives still live in those mountains where tales of Amazons once emerged. The story was entertainment, but no historians doubt that Alexander claimed his bride against all advice and odds, and that he awarded her and her family great personal wealth and power. Women two thousand years ago were not kept in the secluded manner that we see in the Muslim lands today. Bactria was the crossroads of the civilized world when men in England were painting themselves blue and dancing around fires. Alexander was larger than life, and it stands to reason that the woman who stood beside him was also larger than life. The royal house of Iran claimed direct descent from Alexander of Macedon, impossible if his only son died as a child. And if the reader had read the entire book, she would know why Alexander is shown as dark haired on the cover. As a writer of fiction, I stand by my version of history. If it didn't happen just that way, it should have. Judith E. French
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