"The most prolific and successful historical novelist in the world today" (Wall Street Journal) has delivered another blockbuster with this thrilling tale of peril and conquest at the Battle of Poitiers.
September 1356. All over France, towns are closing their gates. Crops are burning, and through-out the countryside people are on the alert for danger. The English army—led by the heir to the throne, the Black Prince—is set to invade, while the French, along with their Scottish allies, are ready to hunt them down.
But what if there was a weapon that could decide the outcome of the imminent war?
Thomas of Hookton, known as le Batard, has orders to uncover the lost sword of Saint Peter, a blade with mystical powers said to grant certain victory to whoever possesses her. The French seek the weapon, too, and so Thomas's quest will be thwarted at every turn by battle and betrayal, by promises made and oaths broken. As the outnumbered English army becomes trapped near Poitiers, Thomas, his troop of archers and men-at-arms, his enemies, and the fate of the sword converge in a maelstrom of violence, action, and heroism.
Rich with colorful characters, great adventure, and thrilling conflict, 1356 is a magnificent tale of how the quest for a holy relic with the power to change history may culminate in an epic struggle.
About the Author
Bernard Cornwell is the author of the acclaimed New York Times bestselling Saxon Tales series, which serves as the basis for the BBC America series The Last Kingdom. He lives with his wife on Cape Cod and in Charleston, South Carolina.
“In addition to carving out another action-packed martial adventure, Cornwell spotlights one of the most significant but often overlooked battles of the era.”
“No one picks a fight like Cornwell, who here does for the Battle of Poitiers what he did for the bloody fray that was Agincourt in the book of that name.”
-Barbara Hoffert, Library Journal
“A master of action-packed historical fiction…a vivid, exciting portrayal of medieval warfare….Nobody writes battle scenes like Cornwell, accurately conveying the utter savagery of close combat with sword, ax, and mace, and the gruesome aftermath.”
-Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Bernard Cornwell does the best battle scenes of any writer I’ve ever read, past or present.”
-George R.R. Martin
“Nobody in the world does this stuff better than Cornwell - action set six hundred years ago is as fresh and vital as six days ago, with rough, tough men at war, proving once again that nothing changes... least of all great storytelling.”
“The reigning king of historical fiction.”