Uhtred is a Saxon, cheated of his inheritance, and adrift in a world of fire, sword, and treachery. He has to make a choice: to fight for the Vikings, who raised him, or for King Alfred the Great of Wessex, who dislikes him.
In the late ninth century, Wessex is the last English kingdom. All the rest have fallen to the Danish Vikings, and the Vikings want to finish England. They assemble the Great Army, whose sole ambition is to conquer Wessex. Yet fate, as Uhtred learns, has its own imperatives. When the Vikings attack out of a wintry darkness to shatter the last English kingdom, Uhtred finds himself on Alfred's side.
The Pale Horseman is an enthralling story, a novel of divided loyalties and desperate heroism, featuring a range of fully realized characters, from a king in despair to a beguiling British sorceress. And always, beyond the spearmen and the swordsmen are the folk who suffer as the tides of war sweep over their farmlands. The Pale Horseman is yet another masterpiece of historical and battle fiction that gives life to one of the most important and exciting epochs in the history of England's people and culture.
” [A] big-bellied, bushy-bearded tale ... [Cornwell] endows the book with an unexpectedly complex, thoughtful soul.”
“A suavely rendered tale … [brings] turbulent times to vivid life.”
“Superior entertainment that is both engaging and enlightening ... Cornwell’s battle scenes ... are superb ... smart and vigorous.”
“A crackerjack adventure tale from a master of the craft.”
“Filled with bawdy humor, bloodlust, treachery and valor, this stirring tale will leave readers eager for the next volume .”
“Great stuff, as always, from the master.”