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Summary

A Saxon raised by Vikings. A pagan fighting for a Christian King. The conflict at the heart of a hero will be played out in the fight for England.

It is 877. Across the kingdoms of Britain the Danes are gaining strength. Uhtred of Bebbanburg, a pagan warrior, must decide who he will align with: the Vikings who raised him or Alfred, King of the West Saxons.

As the Danes make for Wessex and threaten to destroy the kingdom, Uhtred will forge an uneasy alliance with the king, to lead the last remaining Saxon army in a battle that will be a fight for the very existence of England.

©2005 Bernard Cornwell (P)2014 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic reviews

Praise for The Pale Horseman:

"Bernard Cornwell is a literary miracle. Year after year, hail, rain, snow, war and political upheavals fail to prevent him from producing the most entertaining and readable historical novels of his generation." (Daily Mail)
"Cornwell's narration is quite masterly and supremely well-researched." (Observer)
"It is stirring stuff, and few writers are better qualified than Cornwell to do justice to the excitement of the times…Ninth-century Britain and a master of storytelling - it is a marriage made in heaven." (Sunday Telegraph)
"Cornwell's mastery of historical sources and his aptitude for battle scenes is well established…the language, and particularly the dialogue, is raw and unarchaic, rich in insults and Anglo-Saxon expletives." (Times Literary Supplement)

What listeners say about The Pale Horseman

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great narrator

the narrator does an amazing job. he makes tgey characters sound properly different. the books are amazing as well as tgey writer knows very well what he's doing.

3 people found this helpful

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Great listen

The story continues at a rapid pace with uthred torn between his loyalty to the Saxons and Earl Ragnar. This in my opinion is even better that the first book and I am starting the third book immediately. Fantastic

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Excellent. Brilliant performance.

If you could sum up The Pale Horseman in three words, what would they be?

A superb buy.

What other book might you compare The Pale Horseman to, and why?

The whole series and all Bernard Cornwell's books. They are credible and engaging. Full of excitement and characters you care about.

Which character – as performed by Jonathan Keeble – was your favourite?

His performance captures the essence of Ughtred. The tone of voice expresses such emotions, and doubts. Such a shame he hasn't recorded the whole series.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes. Absolutely. Both for the story and the performance. (I'm now waiting for more in the series.)

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Great story, excellent narrator.

I'm a fan of Bernard Cornwell and really enjoyed this series. The writing skill is outstanding, characters are engaging, plot is intriguing but the best part is the depth of the research into the birth of England. Last but not least is the performance of the narrator. Jonathan Keeble is great.

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Blood, gore, treachery and honour

I was engrossed from start to finish. A wonderful tale of heroes and fools remarkably well narrated.

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superb story, unbelievable narration

The combination of keeble and Cornwell is simply captivating. The gritty story line with Keebles passionate reading makes this one of my favourite audiobooks so far

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Excellent narration

Absolutely brilliant series of books and the narration of all these is second to none

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great listen

loved it , found it hard to stop listening very happy with this audio

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Brilliant

Just listened for the second time, brilliant narrative. I've read the books and watched the TV series but this is my favourite.

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Superb

Just wonderful - cracking storytelling and a masterful read by Jonathan Keeble. Right I’m off to download the next one!

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  • Conrad
  • 09-10-16

One of the best books in many year

Nuanced characters, excellent performance, deep look into historical times. I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes fantasy, history, and good story telling.

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  • Rui Ribeiro
  • 23-04-16

Excellent

It's hard to stop listening. The story and the excellent narration grabs your attention and it's hard to put it down.
Highly recommended.