In today’s blog tour post I will be sharing my review Agricola’s Bane by Nancy Jardine, the fourth book in the Celtic Fervour series. You may recall that I have been reading the series for the blog tours organised for each book and I have really enjoyed being a part of it. If you haven’t read anything about the series or want to refresh yourself on the previous books, you will find my reviews of The Beltane Choice, After Whorl: Bran Reborn and After Whorl: Donning Double Cloaks with the links here.
As always, I would like to say a huge thank you to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for organising the blog tour and to the author for provided my with a copy of Agricola’s Bane in exchange for an honest review.
Now all the formalities are out of the way, let’s get into it!
Agricola’s Bane – Nancy Jardine
A.D. 84 Northern Roman Britain
Nith of Tarras helps Enya of Garrigill in the search for her kin, missing after the disastrous battle at Beinn na Ciche fought between the Caledonian warriors and the mighty Ancient Roman legions. Enya soon has a heartrending choice to make. Should she tread Vacomagi territory that’s swarming with Roman auxiliaries to find her brother? Or, should she head south in search of her cousin who has probably been enslaved by the Romans?
The Commander of the Britannic Legions and Governor of Britannia – General Gnaeus Iulius Agricola – is determined to claim more barbarian territory for the Roman Empire, indeed plans to invade the whole island, but finds not all decisions are his to make. It increasingly seems that the goddess, Fortuna, does not favour him.
The adventures of the Garrigill clan continue…
Purchase Link – mybook.to/ABsherenow
Agricola’s Bane picks up the tale of the Roman invasion of Britain after the battle of Beinn na Ciche and offers new perspectives to the increasingly developed tale. The Celtic fighting spirit remains strong despite adversity and the remaining clans have pulled together to face the threat once more. Prior to the Roman threat, the tribes kept themselves to themselves and even skirmished with each other. To see the boundaries of their stubborn independence gradually breakdown, the mistrust of each other slowly abate (in some more than others) and them finally see the benefits of working together is well written. The development of the whole, from communities to community is considered as well as each of many complex individuals within. I enjoyed the new characters, although I did find myself having to mentally double check who they were and how they related to existing characters on occasion. Unlike previous books, there are fewer overlaps to introduce them, or they played a minor role previously.
There is a fair amount of travel and movement of characters in Agricola’s Bane. I really enjoyed reading the beautiful descriptions of the countryside and geography; you can tell a lot of time, knowledge and effort are behind the narrative. There is plenty of action to keep the narrative moving along at a good pace. This can safely be said for all the books I have read in the series so far. The writing, content and character development are all consistently good throughout and the balance of action and description is just right for my taste.
As ever, I have enjoyed the story from both sides of the battle lines. The Celts and their unyielding determination to remain free of the Roman yoke is inspiring to read. Equally, the complexity of the ever-expanding Roman empire and their struggles in a new challenging climate are really interesting too!
I was originally under the impression that Agricola’s Bane was going to be the last book of the series. However, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that the adventures of the Garrigill clan are not yet over! I can’t wait to see how the tale continues!
Giveaway to Win x1 signed paperback of Agricola’s Bane to one UK winner; X1 kindle copy worldwide
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