Wounds of Honour : 1 Paperback
Part of the Empire series
'A master of the genre' The Times Marcus Valerius Aquila has scarcely landed in Britannia when he has to run for his life - condemned to dishonorable death by power-crazed emperor Commodus. The plan is to take a new name, serve in an obscure regiment on Hadrian's Wall and lie low until he can hope for justice. Then a rebel army sweeps down from the wastes north of the Wall, and Marcus has to prove he's hard enough to lead a century in the front line of a brutal, violent war.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 416 pages, map
- Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton General Division
- Publication Date: 04/03/2010
- Category: Historical adventure
- ISBN: 9780340920329
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Review by DWWilkin
Once again we have the journey of a young man ill-prepared for the trials of life as a legionnaire come of age rather rapidly in this instance. Riches brings us to the time of Emperor Commodus who was rather well manipulated by those who wished power and our hero in this series is caught in the middle of such a power struggle.That he is rather well prepared, perhaps too well prepared, we keep seeing revealed more and more. Nearly at every turn he saves himself, or is saved by those around him. That makes the tale rather less compelling. Too many men are willing to aid our hero out of altruistic means, or our hero seems to read people so well that he can tell when a quartermaster is fleecing so outrageously that the Veterans whom our hero trusts and are quite competent miss it. Thus in making our hero overly heroic, Riches misses things that should have been tighter. The Hero has noting to learn, only what he can teach at 19, so wise that he acts like he is near 40. Older writers can miss that difference, that age and experience truly has the edge over youth and inexperience the key word is experienceThe author evokes a tougher life in Briton than we have seen in Scarrows excellent series. And that along with a way to write combat (though focus and POV have problems here) provides an action packed read well worth the time for those who like Military Fiction of the Roman genre.