In The Shadow Of Alexanderby G. A. Hauser
The year is 356 BC and the lands of Europe are ruled by Philip II of Macedon and his son Alexander. A young man in his army's phalanx, known for its impenetrable wall of sharp pointed, 15' sarissa, Thessius becomes completely enamored by the young golden-haired boy, as does a whole army after him. As one of 45,000 men, he begins the long march with his young king
The year is 356 BC and the lands of Europe are ruled by Philip II of Macedon and his son Alexander. A young man in his army's phalanx, known for its impenetrable wall of sharp pointed, 15' sarissa, Thessius becomes completely enamored by the young golden-haired boy, as does a whole army after him. As one of 45,000 men, he begins the long march with his young king to Persia, and on to India, hoping for a night alone with his beloved ruler. Alexander's first wife, Roxane of Persia, is portrayed as his murderer. Thessius tries his best to prevent Roxane from moving to her victim, but, inevitably, fate wins out and Alexander the Great dies. With the help of his friends and lover, Thessius manages to find the strength to take the long road back home.
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A friend recommended this book to me and though Historical novels are not my usual reading fare I soon found myself flying through the pages of this novel. G A Hauser has taped into a market that is going to explode with popularity by this time next year with the release of the Trojan War epic and the Alexander films that are currently in production. If the films get anywhere near to the atmosphere and sense of richness in both language and description of this book then we are in for a treat. As a precursor to the films I would strongly recommend to anyone with an interest in this era that they buy this book. The story of Thessius, son of Percedicus, starts with a riveting opening forewarning us of the impending drama and the corrupt empire of King Philip and the world his son Alexander is born into and has to fight against. There is more than a hint of homo-eroticism and in true keeping with the times G A Hauser does not draw back from questioning the affection and loyalty of the bonds drawn between men from an age where beauty was respected no matter what the gender. The book though moves brilliantly in the realms of Ancient Greek politics and the power hungry and conniving world of kings and gods. Treachery, greed, jealousy and every emotion both good and bad are drawn with an expert eye and played out in this riveting tale. Hauser builds the background eloquently and paints a vivid picture of the time so true that you easily get absorbed into the story. The writing is slick and does not jar or jolt with its voice. The author has captured the narrative, setting and pace of a story that will keep you rooting for the main characters as you would in a thriller and has made this Historical novel equally thrilling and enthralling. An excellent novel!