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Thursday, June 12, 2008

Sword Song - Bernard Cornwell

Sword Song is the fourth book in the Saxon Tales series of books by Bernard Cornwell. Sword Song tells of Uhtred's personal quest to retake Bebbanburg, his place of birth and his rightful place of rule. But he continues to be sidetracked by the Great historical figure of Alfred, the King of Wessex.

Uhtred, a Saxon, but raised a pagan Dane is a powerful warrior and leader of warriors. But he is not always sure where his allegiances lie. But he has given an oath to Alfred, to fight for Wessex.

The story begins with the marriage of Alfred's daughter, Æthelflaed, to Æthelred, cousin to Uhtred. They are to rule Mercia, leashed to Alfred of Wessex. Æthelred is to fight for Lundene (old term for London, already the largest city in England) as it in the territory of Mercia but is essentially without a ruler.

As Uhtred and Æthelred fight for Lundene and fight against each other, Uhtred is again faced with challenges to his loyalty.

I really enjoyed this book. I feel that the author genuinely has fun with this series. He is witty, smart and poignantly portrays the emotions between the main characters in a gritty and volatile era.

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