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The Wolf Warriors

M J Fleming

Average Review Rating Average Rating 9/10 (1 Review)
Book Details

Publisher : Kindle Direct Publishing

Published : 2014

Copyright : M J Fleming 2014

ISBN-10 : EB Not Known
ISBN-13 : EB Not Known

Publisher's Write-Up

The Dark Ages. The Roman Empire has fallen. The former province of Britannia has lapsed into anarchy. Bandits roam the ruined towns. Feral dog packs prowl the forests. Vikings pillage the coasts. Anglo-Saxon war parties invade from Germania intent on reducing the native Britons to slaves, or severed heads to decorate their encampments. Kady is a Briton, the teenage daughter of Kai, a Druid. Kai is mutilated by a werewolf – a Saxon who had ingested a shape-shifting potion. At the moment of his death Kady inherits her father's mystical powers. As the Germanic hordes conquer all before them, she must utilise her new-found skills, quickly learning how to cast spells, read minds, and receive visions. And fight.

The Wolf Warriors shines a vivid light on the Dark Ages, a time when power lay in the hands of whoever wielded their weapons most ruthlessly. There are parallels with modern history: ethnic cleansing, war crimes, slavery. The story also embraces folklore. As well as the titular shape-shifting warriors there are water spirits and monstrous serpents. The white magic of the Druids is countered by evil Germanic shamen. The story unfolds at breakneck pace, with visceral gore and evil characters, tempered with a strong heroine who continually puts her young life on the line for her loved ones.

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Reader Reviews

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Review by Dave Lett (300614) Rating (9/10)

Review by Name
Rating 9/10
With all the adulation surrounding a certain HBO series featuring brutal sword fights, barbarian cannibals and supernatural wolves (Game of Thrones, in case these hints were too vague!) it's hardly surprising historical fantasy is enjoying a golden period. Amazon's bestseller lists are crammed with full-blooded swashbucklers.

The Wolf Warriors is something altogether different. A relatively short novel compared to many fantasy tomes, the story fairly thunders from the pages. Where we might be familiar, perhaps over-familiar, with sparring Roman Legionnaires or medieval knights, the action here is rooted in the so-called Dark Ages, a time as ignored by historic analysis as it is fiction (hence the title). Britain, abandoned by the Roman Empire, has sunk into anarchy. Fleming describes a ruined landscape, the Roman mansions and roads crumbling; this decay the backdrop for prowling bandit gangs (some of whom are partial to human flesh) and packs of ferocious wild dogs. This dangerous world is turned even more upside-down when Anglo-Saxon pillagers arrive en-masse, intent on 'ethnically cleansing' the native British.

Such an impressively nail-biting backdrop needs a strong protagonist. In common with a lot of recent fantasy (Hunger Games, The Host, Divergent) the author has introduced a feisty teenage female, Kady, and placed the fate of a nation on her shoulders. No pressure there, then. The twist is that in this parallel world, magic can be tapped into by Druids (on the native Briton side) or by shamen (on the Anglo-Saxon side). But the enemy shamen have perfected shape-shifting spells, and are conjuring werewolves to spearhead their conquest. Kady must try and master Druid skills.

This novel unfolds at a furious pace. No sooner has Kady survived one situation than she is pitted against something even more life-threatening. The author is clearly having fun in taking certain perceptions we have about 6th Century Britain, and then stirring it all up with bloodthirsty villains, deadly snakes, buckets of gore, and profane dialogue. Another effective touch is to introduce modern xenophobia. The invaders talk of 'collecting Brit heads', while the Celts dismiss the Anglo-Saxons as 'the German bastards'.

Above all, this is a tale of survival against the odds. Kady must harness her latent powers, summon courage, then make a stand against a brutal enemy to protect her family. This is all described with a narrative that flows with white water force.
(30th June 2014)

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