Friday, July 27, 2012

Genghis: Birth Of An Empire

I picked a copy of Conn Iggulden's Genghis: Birth Of An Empire on Saturday and I've just finished it and it was utterly fantastic!  I haven't found a book to be more exhilarating since I read The Warlord Chronicles by Bernard Corwell!

This is the first book in what looks like will be an extensive series which appears to go from Genghis Khan to his grandson Kublai Khan.   The story begins just before the birth of Temujin (later to become Genghis) and follows him from a child trying to please his father Yesugei great khan of the Wolves only to have his father mudered by conspiring Mongol tribesman and the rival Tartars.  Temujin and his surviving family must first deal with their betrayal by their own tribe and then survive alone it the wilderness after being abandoned by a treacherous former Wolf bondsman of Yesugei.

Temujin and his family learn the hard lessons of the wild steppe as they struggle for food, shelter and safety from wandering bands of marauders and Tartars.  Eventually Temujin is able to unite a group of outcasts and wanderers from various tribes and then ultimately uniting several of the Mongol tribes against the Tartars, carving out larger are for the future Mongol Empire.

It was a great read with lots of fast paced action and very like-able characters (yes Iggulden makes twefth century barbarians like-able).  Pick it up if you like accurate historical fiction or if you are just looking for an action story.