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The Ten Thousand
     

The Ten Thousand

4.0 13
by Paul Kearney
 

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Isca is fallen; Antimone draws Her veil over the dead. Rictus, a young soldier of the city, is now ostrakr – homeless, devoid of purpose. He dons the red cloak of the mercenary and sets out to find a road for himself.

On the world of Kuf, the Macht are a mystery, a fierce, barbaric people whose discipline and prowess on the battlefi eld is the

Overview

Isca is fallen; Antimone draws Her veil over the dead. Rictus, a young soldier of the city, is now ostrakr – homeless, devoid of purpose. He dons the red cloak of the mercenary and sets out to find a road for himself.

On the world of Kuf, the Macht are a mystery, a fierce, barbaric people whose discipline and prowess on the battlefi eld is the stuff of legend. If they did not war endlessly on themselves, they would conquer the world. Beyond their home in the remote Harukush Mountains, the teeming races and peoples of Kuf are united under the Great King of Asuria, who can call up whole nations to battle, and whose word is law.

But now the Great King’s brother means to take the throne by force, and has sought out the Macht. Rictus – and ten thousand more mercenary warriors – will march into the heart of the Empire. They will become legends.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Kearney (This Forsaken Earth) retells Xenophon's Anabasis with great attention to detail but little novelty. The Macht, a race of mercenaries, are hired to sail across the oceans and serve as a conquering army for Arkamenes, who is bent on stealing his brother Ashurnan's throne and taking over the Ashur empire. When Ashurnan slays Arkamenes, the Macht are left stranded in the middle of the empire surrounded by hostile armies. Their quest to return home becomes the stuff of legend as they fight overwhelming odds to win their freedom. The story is simple enough to follow, but the characters themselves are forgettable: hard to identify with as men, easy to cheer for as a group. With no sense that the Macht will be anything other than victorious, the drama resides solely in how many named characters will die in the endless, indistinguishable battles. Kearney's considerable talent fails to come through in this unremarkable bloodfest. (Sept.)

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SFF World

"However what the typical Fantasy fan is here for are the battles. It is here where Paul really scores, in those heart-thumping, screaming, blood-spraying combat scenes...Solaris Books have clearly seen what is a niche in the genre market; and they should be applauded for returning to publication an author whose efforts should be more widely appreciated. At a time when gritty fantasy seems to be a popular trend, The Ten Thousand is perhaps a book whose time has come."

The Wertzone

"A few months back I noted The Ten Thousand as being one of my hot tips for 2008. Reading a lengthy preview that the author sent me a while back reinforced this feeling, and now reading the complete novel has confirmed my initial guess. Probably the most underread author in epic fantasy has delivered his strongest novel to date."

Graeme's Fantasy Book Review

"I've read some pretty good fantasy recently but it feels like a long time since I've been so engrossed by a book and just torn through it to see how it ends... What a story it is! Fans of military fantasy are going to find a lot to enjoy here with detailed accounts of life on the road and bone crunching conflict between massed ranks of spearmen... I was left feeling like I'd read some great stuff but I'm glad I wasn't there!"

Speculative Horizons

"The first thing that struck me about this novel was Kearney's writing...(his) writing style is very visceral and evocative... Kearney however is not just a very good writer, but a talented storyteller as well. I'd even go as far to say that there are shades of the great David Gemmell about him, in the way he handles human emotions and other themes like loyalty and courage."

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781849977388
Publisher:
Rebellion Publishing Ltd
Publication date:
02/13/2014
Series:
The Macht , #1
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Sales rank:
429,595
File size:
1 MB

Meet the Author

Paul Kearney was born in Northern Ireland. He studied Old Norse, Middle English and Anglo-Saxon at Oxford University, and subsequently lived for several years in both Denmark and the United States. At present he and his family live by the sea in County Down. www.paulkearneyonline.com

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The Ten Thousand (Macht Series #1) 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 13 reviews.
AmyJ More than 1 year ago
I picked up this book thinking it to be some sort of historical fantasy, but the author had something else entirely in mind. In Kearney's world, Spartan-like warriors inhabit an island just off a mainland that is filled with a myriad of non-human creatures that consider the humans to be little more than beasts. There are two moons, as well. It is an intriguing world, well-developed and rich - and the story is excellently written. It can be quite graphic at times, but not gratuitously, though. War and warriors aren't the most tender things, in any world, apparently. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys things like 300, God of War, and such.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
When I think of this book, first thing that pops in my head is how dark and gruesome it was! I personally enjoy military fantasy above all other genres because of the simple explanations of fantastic ideas, which is exactly what made this book so easily enjoyable! I went looking for a dark book with great battle scenes and that is exactly what I got out of this amazing novel!
MrChris More than 1 year ago
For anyone who knows even a little bit about history, this book is a complete knock off of the real Ten Thousand. It is a fantasy telling of what in real life was the march of Xenophon and his 10,000 Greek mercenaries in their war against the Persian king and his brother. Instead of Xenophon, the lead character is named Jason. Everything else has a distinct Greek feel to it. The storyline is almost exactly the same. Jason is the reluctant leader who tries to get his people out of the enemy lands after the campaign goes south. I was highly disappointed with this story. Reading the cover I was led to believe that this might be a pretty decent story, but it turns out it's one that I have read in detail before. The author is not bad, per say, but there were a lot of sentence structuring that made me reread paragraphs to understand it. I would not recommend this book unless you have absolutely no clue about real history. Otherwise, we can read Xenophon's own work, the Anabaxsis and learn the real story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fantastic series, one of my favorites! Some strangely worded paragraphs, but great otherwise. I also thought it was pretty neat how it's based on historical events. Good read!
RyderN More than 1 year ago
Just finished this trilogy and could not put the books down. Reminds me a bit of Glen Cook's Black Company, without the magic. If you haven't read Kearney and enjoy a good read The Macht Series will keep you coming back for more.
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JosueMoralesC More than 1 year ago
I love the 300 esque style. It's an amazing adventure. I can't wait to read the next books in this epic trilogy.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago