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Summary

454 AD. Northern Italy.

Dux Ambrosius Aurelianus has served the Roman Empire with distinction.

His bucellarii, a small band of irregular soldiers, have helped to bring a fragile peace to the beleaguered empire in the west. But, with the empire now at peace, his master, Flavius Aetius, decides to chain up his dogs of war.

Ambrosius and his men are left to idle away their days in a rural backwater, but Ambrosius’ boredom is brutally swept aside when old rivals seize the opportunity to destroy him.

Pursued as a traitor by the imperial guard, Ambrosius takes his loyal band, along with other dissident soldiers and a Saxon girl, Inga, into the mountains. Since nowhere is safe, Ambrosius travels north, across the crumbling ruins of the empire, to his estranged family in Gaul. But there too, he finds nothing but conflict, for his home town is now besieged by a small army of rebellious Franks.

Freedom and peace seem a world away.

Whatever course the soldier takes, Ambrosius and his bucellarii will need to muster all their strength and skill to survive.

At the twilight of the empire, they may be the last of the Romans....

©2019 Derek Birks (P)2020 Derek Birks

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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Fabulous faction

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Well written and well paced it moves through a fascinating period of Roman history that I knew little about. Structured around real life figures the story carries you along through the chaos of the breakdown of the empire. The narrator manages to imbue each character with individuality and convey the energy of the scenes without being overly dramatic. I will definitely be looking out for further instalments!

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Epic fight scenes

A really great intro to this new series by Derek. A great bunch of characters who definitely know which is the right end of a sword! Absolutely packed to the brim with fight scenes which are done really well.
I wasn’t as keen on the slow burning relationship that develops but not enough to spoil the story.
Mike is a great narrator who really brings out the intensity of the situations and has great character voices.
I’m looking forward to listening to more of these books definitely!
This is my honest opinion on a free review copy.

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  • sm
  • 17-01-21

Looking forward to the next in the series

As always Derek’s books are all action from the start. Interesting story, and looking forward to see how the next books progress. Well narrated.

1 person found this helpful