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The Bleeding Land (Bleeding Land Trilogy Book 1) by [Kristian, Giles]
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The Bleeding Land (Bleeding Land Trilogy Book 1) Kindle Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 73 customer reviews

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Length: 433 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Review

"A brilliant read. As he did with his Raven novels, Kristian weaves a colourful, authentic world in which to set his tale...and he has done it with confidence and real flair. Full of tragedy and triumph, honour and treachery, The Bleeding Land is a thrilling tour-de-force" (BEN KANE)

"Expertly plotted, full of passion and bloody drama...a book that will appeal to passionate, compassionate readers, men and women alike, fans of C J Sansom as much as fans of Conn Iggulden. Read it: you'll love every page" (MANDA SCOTT)

"With powerful protagonists, a gripping story and rollicking action, I can strongly recommend this tour-de-force. Outstanding" (ANTHONY RICHES)

"Giles Kristian has made an effortless transition from Viking warriors to the often tricky emotional landscape of the English Civil War. Visceral, brutal and genuinely moving, this is historical fiction at its thrilling best" (SAUL DAVID)

Book Description

In the tradition of Bernard Cornwell, Giles Kristian, author of the bestselling Viking adventure Raven: Blood Eye begins an epic new drama set against the tumultuous and bloody backdrop of the civil war that tore England apart...

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1882 KB
  • Print Length: 433 pages
  • Publisher: Transworld Digital (26 April 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006WAIUTU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars 73 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #19,666 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Heartbreaking, harrowing, visceral, inescapable, detailed, stunning, gorgeous and riveting. Those are some of the first words that sprang to mind after finishing Giles Kristian's The Bleeding Land. I'm having a good reading year historical fiction-wise and this book was another highlight. Kristian takes his reader along on an adventure and while you know, overall, how it's going to end - this is historical fiction after all - I found myself holding my breath at key scenes, hoping against hope that things would turn out differently. If that isn't a testament to the author's skill, I couldn't think of a better one.

The Bleeding Land opens on the fields at Edgehill, just before the first pitched battle of the English Civil War in October 1642. To me the Civil War was only some lines in my history books, something which led to the execution of King Charles I, the Commonwealth and to the Protectorate led by Oliver Cromwell, to an era in which Puritan morals led to the closing of theatres and a forced conforming of the Arts to their strict world view. With The Bleeding Land, Kristian made the era come alive for me, made it three-dimensional and took it beyond the political reasons behind the War to the motivations of the people not in power who fought its battles.

There are three components that make The Bleeding Land such a fantastic read: its characters, the battle descriptions and Kristian's carefully woven prose. Of course the plot is exciting enough in its own right, but it's these three things that lift it up to something extraordinary. To start off with the last element I named, the prose in this book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Some time ago, I launched into Giles Kristian's Raven Saga. You may have seen my reviews knocking around, as they were so good I ran from one to the next seamlessly and enjoyed all three immensely. They were up there with some of the best adventure/historical fiction I've read. I never flinched from recommending them. But recently, Giles has turned his not-inconsiderable literary talents toward a new theatre: the English civil war

The civil war is not a period I know a great deal about and, while I have a passing interest in it, it's never hooked me so much that I sought out things to read about it (I much prefer looking at historical sites relating to it than reading about it.) It may be that, for me, the civil war has always been just a little too recent.

Saying that, I knew Giles was a good writer from his earlier stuff, and the promo video produced for the book pushed me ever further towards it.

And so I settled into the book not really knowing what to expect but, perhaps, waiting for a Raven-esque adventure saga with lots of God's Teeth and Damn Your Eyes and Have At Him, Sirrah -s. Ok, there are a few of those, but the novel is totally not what I expected. I suspect, furthermore, that a number of people who were real Raven fanatics will dislike this shift into a deep, thoughtful and saddening world, while other folk who would not consider Raven will flock to it.

The Bleeding Land, you see, is not a war story. It is a tale of a torn family, of the love of brothers and sisters pulled by the fickle strands of fate in different directions to such an extent that they are at war. It is a tale of love and loss and heartbreak and strength and perseverance and duty and honour.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A strong finish to this novel was not quite enough to drag it up to 4 stars for me though it was enough to make me want the second installment.

I think like Kristian's first book it took a while for the story to find it's rythm, the characters to become consistant and the plot to find a direction. The Raven viking series got better and better and I expect this series to do the same now it has grown it's roots.

Meet the Rivers boys. One is a dutiful, nobleman who honours his father and King and the other is a bit of a good egg gone bad but for entirely understandable reasons, which I won't 'spoil' for you here but needless to say events give him a chip on the shoulder bigger than the QE11. He, in classic civil war tradition, finds himself on the opposing side to his brother.

It's 16 hundred and something and the English civil war is just warming up nicely. So the noble brother finds himself riding with Prince Rupert and the maverick son jions the opposing rebel forces to try and facilitate an act of revenge. Into that throw in some loathsome villians serving on both sides of the war, some religeous persacution and the woman of the houshold trying to keep the wolves from the door whilst the men folk are away.

There are some truly horrific and disturbing passages, particularly early on in the book which did make this a tough read for even an old grizzled consumer of war books like me. The violence feels a whole lot more real and upsetting than even the more graphic sections of the Raven books which were a bit more 'Boy's own' and fantastic. This on the other hand was gritty, visceral and genuinly shocking.

There were a few cliche's and the style got more Cornwall with every page.
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