Welcome to Day 14 of the amazing Blogival event lasting throughout the month of June. Today I have for you a Guest Post from author Nick Brown and a Giveaway for a signed copy of The Luck Bringer (UK / Northern Ireland and USA ). Let’s get on with it , shall we?
I first became aware of the mystery surrounding Miltiades in my first ever classics tutorial at university where none of us, including the tutor, could explain his remarkable decline from hero of Greece to a traitor’s death in under two years. The man who saved democracy was and remained an enigma. Years of study and research later I wrote Luck Bringer to fill in the many gaps in his story.
In the dying moments of the Greek rebellion against the Persian Empire Miltiades, the tyrant of an area bordering the Empire, realising that the Persian king wanted him dead fled for his native Athens. Miltiades had behaved like a pirate in the rebellion and was hated on both sides but this was nothing towards the passion he would stir up in Athens. As a renegade aristocrat the nobility despised him while as a reactionary the newly emerged democrats regarded him as a deadly enemy. Added to this he brought nothing with him except the hatred of the Great King and danger and destruction to Athens.
Yet in a few short years he managed not only to unite bitter enemies but persuade them to field a small untrained citizen army against the mighty Persian Immortals, who no Greek land army had ever defeated, on the beach at Marathon.
Luck Bringer is as much about the politics and culture of the seething emerging democracy of Athens as it is about the battle with the narrative taking place in bars and brothels as well as in council’s of state and political dinner parties. Following the story through the eyes of Mandrocles the unruly young ward of Miltiades, Luck Bringer aims to present an emotional and fully fleshed out insider’s story of the terror and glory of those days when the founders of western democracy stood alone. It is the first in a series, the second ‘The Wooden Walls of Thermopylae’ is published by Clink St and the ‘The sacrifice of Athena’ will be out in 2017.
In The Luck Bringer Series:
The Luck Bringer (The Luck Bringer Cycle #1)
Extract (Miltiades leading the charge at Marathon as seen by Mandrocles, The Luck Bringer, in the first rank.)
Along our lines the sun was flashing on helmets and spear points. In front, down the slope in the distance, we could see cavalry that the Persians had not embarked riding out to strengthen their wings. Some thirty yards in front of the army was a ruined mound said to be a memorial to some ancient hero. Miltiades walked forwards alone beyond the ranks and climbed it. Then, turning his back on the enemy faced his army. For a time he stood there motionless, locked in thought, the rising sun caught him and he became enveloped in flame.
Then, holding his spear he raised his arm aloft so the sun glistened on its point and waved us forward. He turned and began to walk towards the massed Persian ranks. The generals in front of their regiments lifted their spears in salute, urging us on. There was a blast of a horn from our lines as we moved and so it begins.
The Wooden Walls of Thermopylae (The Luck Bringer Cycle #2)
About The Author
Brown later taught at a number of Manchester schools, where he experienced first hand the racial tensions plaguing the area. At one of the schools a pupil was stabbed to death in the playground, an event which Brown has described as ‘life changing’. He moved to Oldham to work for the council, advising schools and planning a reconstruction of a Romano-British Villa with Greater Manchester Archaeological Unit.
Soon after arriving, he was asked to take over the headship of an Oldham school where a pupil had been killed in a racially-charged shooting. Brown later became Principal of a new Sixth Form college, set up by Oldham council in an attempt to instill a multi- racial ethos. In his 20 years there the college became one of the most successful in the country, and Brown has been awarded an OBE for his work.
Since leaving the school, he now devotes his time to writing. This is Brown’s debut novel and is the first in a series set in the fascinating and tumultuous 5th Century BC Athens.
- One (1) Signed copy of The Luck Bringer (UK, Northern Ireland & USA
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