The Silurian : Book One The Fox and The Bear
by L.A. Wilson available from Lulu.com
Thank heavens for self publishing! Without it, we would have no chance of reading The Silurian from Wilson. But take my word for it, if this book is not snaffled by a publisher soon then I will eat my Easter Bonnet.
The Silurian is an adventure book, action and more action without being regaled by endless gore. I don't want to read a battle blow by blow, clot by clot, but I do like a clear picture of what opposing forces are doing. Are they engaged in single combat between Champions, Celtic style? Is one side rushing pell mell to overwhelm with numbers, brute force and bravery like the Saxons? Is there a plan with Roman military manoeuvres?
When I say 'adventure' I'm happy to say that there are no gratituous sex scenes. If I want to read a book with these scenes, then I will go out and buy one, something I do quite often. I just don't want to come across them unexpectedly in the middle of a novel when there's really no need for them at all. All the same this in an adult book, with adult themes of Love. The bond of comradeship between fighting men is a constant theme and the passions of Love are explored. " Men, women, boys and girls, and even the dogs loved him to madness. He did this to everyone who met him."
Wilson makes Arthur a Welshman, one of the Silures, a tribe which waged effective guerilla warfare against the Roman Occupation. (The Romans never forgave the Silures for harbouring Caratacus).
The story is told by Bedwyr, Prince of Dogfeiling, who prefers to be called simply Fox and I won't spoil the story by saying too much about the familiar Medraut. Fox is now a friend of mine, someone I feel that I know, for Wilson has that wonderful gift of bringing a character into real life.
Wilson's language is superb. Simple English, stark as the landscape and beautiful as only English can be without later borrowed European words. Reading this at home in a summer afternoon of 30 Celsius, I shivered with cold as much as with anticipation. The setting is so very, very real. Luguvalos ... I stood looking up the road into the darkness, at the dark brooding hills around me, the silence and the cold. I pulled my cloak tight and walked forward, so dark in these bloody hills. Much of the time it's cold in The Silurian, a freezing, stone-cold freezing. The kind of cold that was painful. Brrrr!
An excellent addition to my collection of Arthurian novels. I highly recommend it.
Susanna Duffy, on Squidoo.com