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The Sacred Band

The Sacred Band

5.0 24
by Janet Morris

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The Sacred Band of Thebes lives on, a world away, in this mythic epic of love in war in ancient times. In 338 BCE, during the Battle of Chaeronea that results in the massacre of the Sacred Band of Thebes, Tempus and his Stepson cavalry rescue twenty three pairs of Theban Sacred Banders, paired brothers and lovers, to fight on other days. These forty-six Thebans, whose


The Sacred Band of Thebes lives on, a world away, in this mythic epic of love in war in ancient times. In 338 BCE, during the Battle of Chaeronea that results in the massacre of the Sacred Band of Thebes, Tempus and his Stepson cavalry rescue twenty three pairs of Theban Sacred Banders, paired brothers and lovers, to fight on other days. These forty-six Thebans, whose bones will never lie in the mass grave that holds their two hundred and fifty-four brothers, join with the immortalized Tempus and his Sacred Band of Stepsons, consummate ancient cavalry fighters, to make new lives in a faraway land and fight the battle of their dreams where gods walk the earth, ghosts take the field, and the angry Fates demand their due.

Product Details

Perseid Press
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
6.69(w) x 9.61(h) x 1.14(d)

Meet the Author

Best selling author Janet Morris began writing in 1976 and has since published more than 20 novels, many co-authored with her husband Chris Morris or others. She has contributed short fiction to the shared universe fantasy series Thieves World, in which she created the Sacred Band of Stepsons, a mythical unit of ancient fighters modeled on the Sacred Band of Thebes. She created, orchestrated, and edited the Bangsian fantasy series Heroes in Hell, writing stories for the series as well as co-writing the related novel, The Little Helliad, with Chris Morris. Most of her fiction work has been in the fantasy and science fiction genres, although she has also written historical and other novels. Morris has written, contributed to, or edited several book-length works of non-fiction, as well as papers and articles on nonlethal weapons, developmental military technology and other defense and national security topics. Author and composer Chris Morris began writing music in 1966, fiction in 1984, and nonfiction in 1989. Much of his fiction and nonfiction literary work, including all of his book-length science fiction and fantasy, has been written in collaboration with his wife Janet Morris. He has contributed short fiction to the best selling series Thieves' World and Heroes in Hell.

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The Sacred Band 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 24 reviews.
BriandGigi More than 1 year ago
A big book full of insight and mythical adventure in the ancient world by some of my most favorite authors.
Abarsis More than 1 year ago
The Sacred Band cover says it's an adventure like no other, and that is so. Tempus's Sacred Band of Stepsons, iconic ancient cavalry fighters, team up with the remnants of the Sacred Band of Thebes at the historic battle of Chaeronea -- and beyond. Gods and heroes face the angry Fates in this mythic novel of love and war a world away. Unforgettable characters from the Sacred Band of Stepsons fight on, joined by new blood from the legendary Sacred Band of Thebes. This is a wonderful story, mixing history and myth in a heady blend that transports you to another world where gods are real, sorcery is fearsome, and glory and honor mean everything. "Life to you, and everlasting glory," say the heroes and heroines of the unified Sacred Band. If you like your military mythic, your lovers ardent, your sorcery insidious, and your battles fierce, you'll love The Sacred Band.
SixString More than 1 year ago
I'd almost given up on ever seeing something new by Janet Morris but here it is and it's out of this world in every way! I don't know where she's been but this story is Morris (and husband) at the top of their game. High adventure that pulls no punches is what the Sacred Band is all about; I found myself being there in the story not wanting it to end.
AngelJK More than 1 year ago
The Sacred Band is an epic and heroic novel mixing myth, history, fantasy, passion, and metaphysics in the 4th century B.C. When the story opens, Tempus the Black and his cavalry save 23 pairs of fighters from the doomed Sacred Band of Thebes at the Battle of Chaeronea on August 2, 338 BC and whisk them through a mystical portal to a fantasy world to "fight on other days". The angry Fates and the patron goddess of the Sacred Band of Thebes follow these forty-six brothers and lovers into a world of myth and magic. Love and warfare ensue, beautifully written in a story that verges on Homeric. Among the Sacred Band are four young trainees who nearly -- but not quite -- steal the story as they come of age among ghosts and gods, sprites and nymphs, and the heroes of the Sacred Band of Stepsons. This book isn't about any one thing: it mixes questions of love and loyalty, men and women, girls and boys, honor and betrayal, passion and death. There is even a ghost-horse who won my heart. This book has a pansexual element since the Sacred Band of Thebes is made up of paired lovers, many of whom have the mythic equivalent of post-traumatic stress disorder. My favorite characters? The Sacred Band's commander, his partner Nikodemos, the Greek goddess Harmony... But there's also a wonderful witch and a sprite stronger than any man, a love-struck thaumaturge.... But read this book and see for yourself what modern heroic fiction can be in a fully realized cosmos where myth meets history and magic defines love.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Another wonderful epic by talented writer!
AvidReader2015 More than 1 year ago
The Sacred Band is an epic story, based on Plato's Sacred Squadron, which consisted of pairs of male lovers that formed the elite force of the Theban army in the 4th century BC. The authors open it without wasting any time to hint that some of the characters, like Tempus (AKA the Riddler) have multiple names. You are invited right into their midst. It is by association, and by living next to them as if you were part of the band, that these names start to connect for you—even without the benefit of an official introduction. You will find yourself immersed in a mythological world, among mortal and immortal beings, whose deeds and reflections carry poetic, symbolic meanings. “The Fates swoop in, looking Tempus in the eye. And he can see them, this man of many years, who has beside him a creature of wind and wave.”  Action is delivered in a sensual manner that puts you right there, in the skin of the characters, seeing and hearing everything they do, and at the same rhythm: “When he had walked as far as the dockside along the swampy marsh, he saw a flash of leg, a gleam of skin. It was too tempting. He gave chase. He chased and chased it, into the Maze, and into a warren of alleys and hovels. He was about to give up when he caught sight of it again: a flash of skin, low cursing, heavy breathing and a clutter in an alley.” I was especially moved by the scene of burning stables. “Horses screaming. Men running. Water in buckets; never enough. Black smoke billowing from the barracks, making men and horses caught and cough and wheeze. Lurid flames; evil, awful light from hell as hungry fire eats up men and horses, hopes and dreams.” I find it an amazingly unique that this story is the product of creative collaboration between its two authors, Janet Morris and Chris Morris. Seamlessly executed, this is more than a story—it is a triumphant imagination of the possibility to rise above ourselves, so that everyday reality is but a shadow of what we can dream. Five stars.
AnnoulaAO More than 1 year ago
A lovely mythic epic of love in war set in ancient times. This is a beautiful story, mixing history and myth. I thoroughly enjoyed the book that was gifted to me for an honest review.
Edie_M More than 1 year ago
I really liked this book enough to give it 5 stars. I was transported into another world. It really has it all: history, conflicts between mortals and immortals, legends, gods, the fight for love and honor. And epic descriptive battles! The characters were well developed and realistic. It's a long story but well worth the read. Enjoyed it very much.
Antalis More than 1 year ago
Action packed novel filled with battles, mysteries, murder, sorcery, prescient visions, with a mixture of philosophy, mythology, mysticism, gods, and sexuality. A historical fantasy epic saga with great characters and settings in fantasy. "The Sacred Band" details the adventures of The Sacred Band of Stepsons, from the world anthology series, "Thieves' World", in the Sacred Band novels by Janet and Chris Morris. Fans of the series will not be disappointed, as favorite characters and locales from the earlier novels and stories are present in the book.
StevieT More than 1 year ago
Epic, powerful, and well-researched historical tale of over 500 pages. I didn't want to put the book down! I'll be looking for more books from this author.
DarrinM More than 1 year ago
565 pages of epic awesomeness. A fantastic tale told well of a time gone by. Great writing that holds you from page one and holding the reader for 565 pages is no easy task. Unless you are Janet Morris. I do highly recommend this book. DISCLAIMER: I received a free digital copy in return for an honest review.
Audrey_Digne0 More than 1 year ago
Excellent book. Great concept. If a book doesn't throw you between Gods and mortals and the rest, what else is it for? Bravo.
DPW1967 More than 1 year ago
An EPIC novel based on historical facts. A great read, hard to put down and thoroughly enjoyable. Recommended. 
Crystal-of-The-Book-Rack More than 1 year ago
This is the first Sacred Band story I have ever read and I'm left wondering how in the heck I overlooked this amazing world created by Janet Morris and Chris Morris in the 1980s. (Whoops, did I just carbon date myself there?) One of the things I found so great about this book is that it doesn't matter that I missed all that cool stuff in the '80s because I picked this one up and dove right. Sure there were a very few allusions to prior stories, but not enough to make you feel like you've really missed out on something major. This book stands alone and does a great job of doing it. What happens when gods, fates, and other supernatural forces dally with the lives of men? Nothing good. We find Tempus leading his Sacred Band of Stepsons into harms way in an effort to save the fated dead on the field of battle, setting off a chain of events even gods and goddesses can't control. If they are successful, how will men sworn to fight and die alongside their brethren find a way to live with themselves? The supposed son of a god, a seer, a wizarding boy, and one blessed by a goddess come to earth. How might these four young Sacred Banders effect the outcome? The only way to find out is to read this wonderful book for yourself. When I finished The Sacred Band, before I realized it had happened I had taken my Kindle back to the first page and read three pages again. It must have been my subconscious trying it's best not to leave Sanctuary leaving my new found friends behind. I cannot wait to get my hands on another Sacred Band tome.
Larry_Atchley_Jr More than 1 year ago
The Sacred Band of Stepsons, led by thier immortal leader, Tempus Thales, avatar of the ancient storm god Enlil, save forty-six men of the Sacred Band of Thebes, an ancient Greek warrior fighting unit, from thier fated death on the battlefield. The consequences of cheating destiny and death and altering history reverberate throughout the novel. Fans of the series will not be disappointed, as favorite characters and locales from the earlier novels and stories are present in the book. The Stepsons, including Niko, Critias, Straton, Sync, and others even return to the ill-fated city of Sanctuary along with their new found brothers in battle, the 23 pairs of Theban warriors. What follows is an action packed, fast paced novel filled with battles, mysteries, murder, sorcery, precient visions, philosophy, mythology, mysticism, gods, sexuality, and explorations into the relationships amongst the Stepsons and Thebans and how they resolve the integration of their separate Sacred Bands. I have waited years for new stories from what are some of my favorite characters and settings in fantasy, and this new novel has become one of my favorite books of all time. If you love action packed fantasy with rich settings and complex, deep characters, then you will love The Sacred Band.
B_Underwood More than 1 year ago
At 600 pages, this epic story is not for the faint-hearted, but for those who venture into the fantastic world of ancient gods, wars and battles, “The Sacred Band” is immensely rewarding. The writing style is meant to pace the reader, but by doing so, I found that the images of people and events were deeply impressed on my mind, particularly the battle of Chaeronea in 338 BCE, which is the central theme of this story. For those familiar with classic history, this Fantasy version would be particularly exciting, but even for those of us who just like to enjoy a good book, The Sacred Band won’t disappoint. The writing style epitomizes true literature of high quality, making it a very rewarding reading experience on its own merit, regardless of historic basis or the fantasy genre. The ancient world relied heavily on its belief in gods and how those gods controlled or interacted with mortal man, and this makes an excellent platform for a special kind of Fantasy novel. The characters, gods, avatar of gods, and other beings in between the heavenly and earthly realm are gradually introduced and developed, and near the end of the book I found myself feeling well acquainted and even fond of the main characters; Tempus, Niko, Strat, Crit, the Theban goddess Harmony, among others, and was anxious to read the outcome of the climactic battle, hoping they would all survive unscathed. Getting involved with the characters, their lives and destinies in such a way is always a sign of a good story and a well-written book, and for me personally, “The Sacred Band” has made a part of obscure history come to life in my mind and thereby also changed my perception of this part of history.
NormandieAlleman More than 1 year ago
A rich tapestry of myth, war, love, and honor woven with great care by two outstanding authors. This epic book is reminiscent of classic literature and I'd recommend it highly to lovers of such.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
THE SACRED BAND is one of the most captivating books of this genre that I have ever read. It is nicely balanced and doesn’t become bogged down in any one aspect of its ancient setting. The gods, demi-gods, and men are portrayed in a splendid, multifaceted, and intense epic worth the read.
Talleyrand More than 1 year ago
A meaty book with memorable characters and a rich narrative that transports you to another dimension. The writing takes you to the exact time and place of the story. A stimulating, immersive read.
LakeGirl2015 More than 1 year ago
An exciting and fascinating epic adventure based on myths but incredibly relatable (even to readers like me who don't usually read science fiction or fantasy) because of its human element. The story feels very real because of multi-dimensional characters and descriptions that feel vivid and cinematic. Lots of incredible scenes. One of the most memorable ones for me was the burning stables, with the suffering of the horses and the desperate efforts of people to help them. Highly recommended!
Mireia_Stone More than 1 year ago
Fantastic read, couldn't put it down!
William_O_Brien More than 1 year ago
The Sacred Band by Janet Morris & Chris Morris Without doubt, a magnificent read of epic proportion filling the pages of this stunning work presented by these two authors. The Sacred Band is full-to-the-brim of myth, adventure, ghosts and gods entangled with love and war in this gripping tale. The writers certainly know how to captivate their readers with strong characters, battle scenes, heroic gestures and torment. The book has a very 'real' essence and you will feel you are part of this wonderfully descriptive amazing page-turner. You will certainly struggle to pull yourself away from this one. I can't believe I haven't stumbled upon these authors before - time to search through the other numerous books written - true genius! An extremely well-written novel that will remain in your thoughts for a very long time. Highly recommended - an epic 5*****
Jonny123 More than 1 year ago
Read it when it first came out and I love it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Twists, turns and vivid imagery from the beginning to the end.