Happy book birthday to the wonderful Son of Mercia, the first book telling the story of young Icel in early ninth-century Mercia (fans of The Last King will have met Icel before, but it’s not necessary to enjoy Son of Mercia).
The series is now a massive four books long, and I’m busy working on book 5, which doesn’t have a title just yet (or does it?)
I thought today would be a great day to shine a light on all four books, and don’t worry if you’ve not read book 4 yet, Eagle of Mercia is releasing in May 2023. So here goes.
Tamworth, Mercia AD825.
The once-mighty kingdom of Mercia is in perilous danger.
Their King, Beornwulf lies dead and years of bitter in-fighting between the nobles, and cross border wars have left Mercia exposed to her enemies.
King Ecgberht of Wessex senses now is the time for his warriors to strike and exact his long-awaited bloody revenge on Mercia.
King Wiglaf, has claimed his right to rule Mercia, but can he unite a disparate Kingdom against the might of Wessex who are braying for blood and land?
Can King Wiglaf keep the dragons at bay or is Mercia doomed to disappear beneath the wings of the Wessex wyvern?
Can anyone save Mercia from destruction?
Icel is becoming a warrior of Mercia, but King Ecgberht of Wessex still holds the Mercian settlement of Londonia and its valuable mint.
King Wiglaf of Mercia is determined that the last bulwark be reclaimed from his sworn enemy to complete his rehabilitation as Mercia’s rightful ruler.
In the heart of the shield wall, Icel suddenly finds himself on the wrong side of the battle and thrust into the retreating enemy stronghold where he must take on the pretence of a Wessex warrior to survive and exact a cunning plan to bring down the Wessex force cowering behind the ancient walls.
His allegiances are tested and the temptation to make new allies is overwhelming but Icel must succeed if he’s ever to see Tamworth again and bring about King Wiglaf’s victory, or will he be forced to join the enemy?
Icel is a lone wolf no more…
Oath sworn to Wiglaf, King of Mercia and acknowledged as a member of Ealdorman Ælfstan’s warrior band, Icel
continues to forge his own destiny on the path to becoming the Warrior of Mercia.
With King Ecgberht of Wessex defeated and Londonium back under Mercian control, the Wessex invasion of Mercia is over.
But the Wessex king was never Mercia’s only enemy. An unknown danger lurks in the form of merciless Viking raiders, who set their sights on infiltrating the waterways of the traitorous breakaway kingdom of the East Angles, within touching distance of Mercia’s eastern borders.
Icel must journey to the kingdom of the East Angles and unite against a common enemy to ensure Mercia’s hard-won freedom prevails.
A mercy mission in the heart of Wessex is beset with deadly, bloody dangers.
Icel’s profile continues to rise. Lord of Budworth and warrior of Mercia, he’s acknowledged by King Wiglaf and his comrades to keep Mercia safe from the ravages of Wessex, the king-slayer of the East Angles, and the Viking raiders.
But, danger looms. Alongside Spring’s arrival comes the almost certain threat of the Viking raiders return.
When Lord Coenwulf of Kingsholm is apprehended by a Viking and held captive on the Isle of Sheppey in Wessex held Kent, Icel is implored by Lady Cynehild to rescue her husband.
To rescue Lord Coenwulf, Icel and his fellow warriors must risk themselves twice over, for not only must they overpower the Viking raiders, they must also counter the threat of Mercia’s ancient enemy, the kingdom of Wessex as they travel through their lands.
Far from home and threatened on all sides, have Icel and his fellow warriors sworn to carry out an impossible duty
Set in the troubled years at the end of the Mercian supremacy, with the advent of the true First Viking Age just around the corner, The Eagle of Mercia Chronicles allow me to explore the kingdoms of Saxon England at the time, while ensuring my focus remains on Mercia, the kingdom in the’Midlands’ of England, with which I’m quite obsessed.
And choosing to write about a very strong character from my The Last King series, also allows me to play with my readers expectations. Icel is a fabulous creation, and one I’m incredibly proud of and pleased that my readers love so much.
Yes, these are bloody and brutal tales, but at the heart of them is a ‘coming of age’ story as young Icel learns about himself, as well as the truth of his heritage and birth.
If you’ve not yet tried The Eagle of Mercia Chronicles, then now is the perfect opportunity. Enjoy.
To win a set of the first three books in paperback – signed and dedicated as you would like, please sign up for my newsletter, or my newsletter with Boldwood Books. (Competition ends on 24th Feb). I send a monthly email. I will contact the winner and arrange postage – I will post worldwide. If you are signed up for both already, then drop me a quick email, and I will enter you into the competition. Good luck.