The Bleeding Land Hardcover – 26 Apr 2012
Customers who bought this item also bought
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
"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)
"In The Bleeding Land, 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)
"Giles Kristian brings to this novel all the trademarks of his highly successful Raven Viking series, and while some of the brutality is quite hard to deal with, it is nevertheless a great read. More to come, I hope" (DAILY MAIL)
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...See all Product description
Top customer reviews
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. In fact, the tale actually ends just after the first major battle of the Civil War, which gives you an idea of where the meat of the story lies: not in battle, but in the story of those who fight it.
That's enough of the plot. Don't want to ruin it for you. I will say three things in particular that I consider strengths and which should draw you to want to read it.
Firstly, there is the sheer visual nature of the narrative. It is almost impossible not to completely visualise every scene he writes. In fact, there is such depth of feeling in the descriptive that you can even smell, hear or taste the scene. It was such a shock from almost the opening scene to be drawn so completely in that I felt I was there. This alone is phenomenal and a rare gift.
Secondly, there is the nature of the battle scenes. Battle scenes are very easy to write (from personal experience) for excitement, for horror, for gore, for valour and so on. What Giles manages is to write his civil war millitary engagements from the smallest skirmish to the great ckash at Edgehill with such care that they are all-encompassing. They are all of the above and more and, given the descriptive I mention previously, they are evocative of every clash you've seen in a classic movie: the cannon fire in Cromwell, the volley fire in Zulu. They are scenes that will stay in your memory.
Thirdly, the simple skill with words. A score of times or more in the text, I read a phrase, a line, a description, that made me wish I could write even half that well. It is a beautiful piece of narrative.
So go on... You need to follow the tale of Tom and Mun, their parents and sister, of Emmanuel and the folk of Lancashire good and bad. And cheer Prince Rupert (and the King, for I am and will always be a Royalist at heart). This emotional roller-coaster of a tale will tear out your heart and rebuild it only to batter it again. As a last word, I would compare Kristian's treatment of a torn family to the standalone works of Guy Gavriel Kay (and I can think of no higher praise, Kay having been my favourite writer for decades.)
Buy the Bleeding Land and experience it.
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Most recent customer reviews