By Bernard Cornwell

The moment installment of Bernard Cornwell’s bestselling sequence chronicling the epic saga of the making of britain, “like online game of Thrones, yet genuine” (The Observer, London)—the foundation for The final Kingdom, the hit BBC the United States tv series.

This is the exciting—yet little known—story of the making of britain within the ninth and tenth centuries, the years within which King Alfred the nice, his son and grandson defeated the Danish Vikings who had invaded and occupied 3 of England’s 4 kingdoms.

At the top of The final Kingdom, The Danes have been defeated at Cynuit, however the triumph of the English isn't fated to final lengthy. The Danish Vikings speedy invade and occupy 3 of England’s 4 kingdoms—and all that is still of the as soon as proud kingdom is a small piece of marshland, the place Alfred and his relations dwell with a couple of infantrymen and retainers, together with Uhtred, the dispossessed English nobleman who used to be raised via the Danes. Uhtred has continuously been a Dane at center, and has continually believed that given the opportunity, he could struggle for the boys who raised him and taught him the Viking methods. but if Iseult, a robust sorceress, enters Uhtred’s existence, he's pressured to contemplate emotions he’s by no means faced before—and Uhtred discovers, in his second of maximum peril, a new-found loyalty and love for his local kingdom and ruler.

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I have been a boy myself then, newly captured through the Danes, and my opponent had fought me in a whirl of fists and toes and that i had hammered him down into the riverbank and brought his amulet. I nonetheless have it. I contact it usually, reminding Thor that I stay, yet that day I touched it simply because i assumed of Ragnar. The hostages will be lifeless, and was once that why Wulfhere had ridden away at sunrise? yet how may possibly he have identified the Danes have been coming? If Wulfhere had identified then Alfred could have recognized and the West Saxon forces may were prepared. None of it made experience, other than that Guthrum had back attacked in the course of a truce and the final time he had damaged a truce he had confirmed that he was once prepared to sacrifice the hostages held to avoid simply such an assault. It appeared yes he had performed it back and so Ragnar will be lifeless and my international was once reduced. such a lot of lifeless. there have been corpses within the meadow among our hiding position and the river, and nonetheless the slaughter went on. the various Saxons had run again in the direction of the city, chanced on the bridge was once guarded and attempted to flee northwards and we watched them being ridden down via the Danes. 3 males attempted to withstand, status in a decent team with swords prepared, yet a Dane gave an exceptional whoop and charged them along with his horse, and his spear went via one man’s mail, crushing his chest and the opposite have been thrown apart by means of the horse’s weight and instantly extra Danes closed on them, swords and axes rose, and the horsemen spurred on. a lady screamed and ran in terrified circles until eventually a Dane, lengthy hair flying, leaned from his saddle and pulled her gown up over her head so she used to be blind and part bare. She staggered within the damp grass and a half-dozen Danes laughed at her, then one slapped her naked rump together with his sword and one other dragged her southwards, her screams muffled through the entangling costume. Iseult used to be shivering and that i positioned a mail-clad arm round her shoulders. i'll have joined the Danes within the meadow. I spoke their language and, with my lengthy hair and my arm earrings, I gave the look of a Dane. yet Haesten was once someplace in Cippanhamm and he may possibly betray me, and Guthrum had no nice love for me, or even if I survived then it is going to cross challenging with Leofric and Iseult. those Danes have been in a rampant temper, flushed by means of their effortless good fortune and if a dozen made up our minds they sought after Iseult then they might take her whether or not they proposal i used to be a Dane or now not. They have been looking in packs and so it used to be most sensible to stick hidden till the push had handed. around the river, on the most sensible of the low hill on which Cippanhamm was once outfitted, i may see the town’s greatest church burning. The thatched roof was once whirling into the sky in nice ribbons of flame and plumes of spark-riddled smoke. ‘What in God’s identify have been you doing again there? ’ Leofric requested me. ‘Back there? ’ his query harassed me. ‘Dancing round Steapa like a gnat! He may have persevered that every one day! ’ ‘I wounded him,’ I stated, ‘twice. ’ ‘Wounded him? candy Christ, he’s harm himself worse whilst he was once shaving! ’ ‘Doesn’t subject now, does it?

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