Clash of Eagles by Alan Smale

I received this book via NetGalley for the purpose of this review. All comments and opinions are my own.

Synopsis:

It’s The Last of the Mohicans meets HBO’s Rome in this exciting and inventive debut novel from Sidewise Award-winner, Alan Smale, that will thrill fans of alternate history, historical fiction, and military fiction.

In a world where the Roman Empire never fell, a legion under the command of general Gaius Marcellinus invades the newly-discovered North American continent. But Marcellinus and his troops have woefully underestimated the fighting prowess of the Native American inhabitants. When Gaius is caught behind enemy lines and spared, he must reevaluate his allegiances and find a new place in this strange land.

Review:

Such a unique story with some pretty amazing characters! Alan’s writing style is just perfect, not overruling with details but clear enough that you could even smell everything that happened! (And can I just say how awesome the cover is?! Wow, just gorgeous!)

There were many issues that contradicted my morals however, and actually caused me to stop reading in the height of action, much to my dismay. From the very beginning, Clash of Eagles consists of the smaller cuss words and not very frequent, but the intensity of the cursing quickly escalated as the book went on, eventually using all cursing.

The gore and action is decently high, containing vivid scenes of maiming as well as killing in the war scenes. There is an unnecessary sex scene, that though it is not overly detailed, it is still disturbing.

So it hurts me to give a book that has as much potential as Clash of Eagles does, only 2 out of 5 stars because of all of the unnecessary content. However, the story line, writing, and characters are brilliant and I wanted to mention that again!

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Rated:

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The Pharaoh’s Daughter by Mesu Andrews

I received this book from the author/publisher for the purpose of this review. All comments and opinions are entirely my own.

The Synopsis: 

Anippe has grown up in the shadows of Egypt’s good god Pharaoh, aware that Anubis, god of the afterlife, may take her or her siblings at any moment. She watched him snatch her mother and infant brother during childbirth, a moment which awakens in her a terrible dread of ever bearing a child. Now she is to be become the bride of Sebak, a kind but quick-tempered Captain of Pharaoh Tut’s army. In order to provide Sebak the heir he deserves and yet protect herself from the underworld gods, Anippe must launch a series of deceptions, even involving the Hebrew midwives—women ordered by Tut to drown the sons of their own people in the Nile.
When she finds a baby floating in a basket on the great river, Anippe believes Egypt’s gods have answered her pleas, entrenching her more deeply in deception and placing her and her son Mehy, whom handmaiden Miriam calls Moses, in mortal danger.
As bloodshed and savage politics shift the balance of power in Egypt, the gods reveal their fickle natures and Anippe wonders if her son, a boy of Hebrew blood, could one day become king. Or does the god of her Hebrew servants, the one they call El Shaddai, have a different plan—for them all?

My Review: 

I am a huge fan of Biblical fiction novels so I am always on the lookout for new authors. So, having heard fabulous things about Mesu Andrews, I saw that The Pharaoh’s Daughter was available for review, and I thought I’d give it a shot.

Starting off, Andrews’ writing style is beautiful and I love the way that her book is outlined as well as how it flows. All of the Egyptian history and how the story focuses on the Egyptians’ way of living, as well as the Hebrews, is definitely interesting and there was much to learn. The fact that there is a “hero” on both sides is also neat.

The characters are wonderfully developed and I couldn’t put the book down for the better part of the week, however, there were a few things that I didn’t care for.

Annipe’s wedding night with her husband is a tad bit too detailed for me to comfortably recommend this novel to other Christian readers, as well as is the night before he leaves. I would have enjoyed the book better had the author simply hinted at what they were doing (like we didn’t know….) rather than actually showing the scene. Now, as a disclaimer, neither scene was explicit but still, both scenes being so close together and so equally detailed actually caused me to put the book down and not read on.

Having said this, I can only rate The Pharaoh’s Daughter 2 out of 5 stars and will be extra cautious of this author in the future.

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