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on 8 October 2017
excellent...perfect for adventure-loving 10-year old...great...
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on 6 December 2017
Great story - way before its time
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on 19 January 2015
The Eagle of the Ninth is simply the best children's (and adult's) adventure book ever written. The other two are almost as good.
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on 29 August 2017
An enjoyable read about the last British Romans
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on 19 April 2013
Most people of a certain age will be familiar with the first book in this trilogy - the eagle of the ninth. It has been dramatised for TV on more than one occasion, and been made into a (not very good) film in recent years.
Often thought of as children's books, there is nothing that really makes them so, and they are just as enthralling for readers of all ages.
The three books, each set about 150 years apart, are loosely linked, but you don't need to have read one to appreciate the others. They are well written, and the story moves along quite briskly, more so than they generally would if they were written today. There is a sparseness to the writing which places it in it's time (the books were written in the 1950's), but which is not in any way off-putting.
If you like historical fiction, then these three books are probably the best set in Roman Britain, so buy and enjoy!
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on 18 April 2011
This set of books would be excellent additions to anyone's collection. The three books are loosely - the first, The Eagle of the Ninth, is Sutcliff's most famous work, and is currently the subject of a film adaptation, The Eagle. It's the story of an injured and embittered young centurion, Marcus Flavius Aquila, who takes on an impossible quest - to find the lost eagle standard of his father's legion, lost many years before in the wilds of Scotland. It's a stirring tale of bravery, honour and the search for redemption against overwhelming odds, and it has entranced generations of readers from "eight to eighty eight".

While The Silver Branch, the second book, is an excellent read, it is not in quite the same league as the first story. Set about 150 years later, it concerns two cousins, both members of the same family as the hero of The Eagle of then Ninth. The tale also takes place in Britain, at a time when the emperorship of Rome had become a commodity to be fought over. Again the themes of loyalty, honour and aiming for a brighter future stand out, as do Sutcliff's wonderful descrptions of Roman Britain.

The Lantern Bearers is the last book, and in my mind, it is the best. Winner of the Carnegie Medal, an extremely prestigious award, it is by far the most rich in character development. The main protagonist is Aquila, a young Roman soldier, and a member of the same family as those who featured in the first two books. Deserting the legions as they abandon Britain to its fate (in AD 410), he enters the service of Ambrosius, a charismatic Roman leader whose aim it is to save the island from the waves of Saxon and Jute invaders. The story carries the reader through nearl 20 years of warfare, and is a joy to read. One of the other characters, Artos (a nod to the mythical figure of Arthur) also features in another Sutcliff book, the highly regarded Sword at Sunset.

Ben Kane, author of The Forgotten Legion.
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on 19 July 2017
Read these when I was a little girl. They are very male centred which I didn't notice at the time. But if you can tolerate that a great read.
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on 28 March 2011
This compendium would be an excellent addition to anyone's collection. It's made up of three loosely linked books - the first, The Eagle of the Ninth, is Sutcliff's most famous work, and is currently the subject of a film adaptation, The Eagle. It's the story of an injured and embittered young centurion, Marcus Flavius Aquila, who takes on an impossible quest - to find the lost eagle standard of his father's legion, lost many years before in the wilds of Scotland. It's a stirring tale of bravery, honour and the search for redemption against overwhelming odds, and it has entranced generations of readers from "eight to eighty eight".

While The Silver Branch, the second book, is an excellent read, it is not in quite the same league as the first story. Set about 150 years later, it concerns two cousins, both members of the same family as the hero of The Eagle of then Ninth. The tale also takes place in Britain, at a time when the emperorship of Rome had become a commodity to be fought over. Again the themes of loyalty, honour and aiming for a brighter future stand out, as do Sutcliff's wonderful descrptions of Roman Britain.

The Lantern Bearers is the last book, and in my mind, it is the best. Winner of the Carnegie Medal, an extremely prestigious award, it is by far the most rich in character development. The main protagonist is Aquila, a young Roman soldier, and a member of the same family as those who featured in the first two books. Deserting the legions as they abandon Britain to its fate (in AD 410), he enters the service of Ambrosius, a charismatic Roman leader whose aim it is to save the island from the waves of Saxon and Jute invaders. The story carries the reader through nearl 20 years of warfare, and is a joy to read. One of the other characters, Artos (a nod to the mythical figure of Arthur) also features in another Sutcliff book, the highly regarded Sword at Sunset.

Ben Kane, author of The Forgotten Legion.
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on 6 December 2010
I first read the Eagle of The Ninth when I was about 8-9 in the late 60s, I loved the story then and read all the rest of Rosemary Sutcliffe's novels. I continue to enjoy similar stories and Simon Scarrow's Macro and Cato novels are a modern equivalent. I introduced my now grown-up daughter to the book, she too loves it and has read 2 copies to death!! I don't think referring to the 2 later books as being "set in the same Universe" is very helpful - these books are not fantasy, they are set in our Universe in Roman times.
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on 10 September 2010
This book is fantastic.
I have been a fan of the Eagle of the Ninth story since it was dramatised on Radio 4 back in 1996 and have listened to it on and off since then. I never thought to read the book until I realised the radio version was waaaay to short for my liking.
This book comprises The Eagle of the Ninth, the Silver Branch and the Lantern Bearers, three stories set in the same universe.

I would recommend that anybody planning to go and see the new movie adaptation of 'The Eagle of the Ninth' read the book first as the story is amazing. Testament to Rosemary Sutcliff's writing prowess.
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