An examination of one of the most important battles in the annals of medieval military history… and you can start reading it today!
Authors Michael Livingston | Publisher Osprey | Price £10.99 | Released Out now
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The Battle of Brunanburh is a name that, unlike the Battle of Hastings, may not be immediately familiar to readers less versed in medieval military history. Nonetheless, this event, which saw the Anglo-Saxons led by King Athelstan take on an alliance of various rival kings, was one of the most significant battles in the history of Britain. However, despite its importance the location of the battle has been lost to time. In Never Greater Slaughter, author Michael Livingston tells the story of Brunanburh and also of the incredible hunt to find its location.
Livingston’s research is impressive and at 192 pages, the book is certainly comprehensive. He focuses a lot on events leading up to the battle as opposed to the battle itself, which may frustrate some readers but is nonetheless engaging and interesting. His ability to piece together a staggering amount of different sources is impressive to say the least.
Livingston writes in an engaging manner and is not afraid to use his imagination, unsurprisingly given that he also writes historical fantasy novels . Almost immediately at the beginning of the book he hooks the reader with his musings as to what Athelstan may have thought post battle, in what is a beautiful and intriguing moment. His prose keeps the reader engaged, though this use of fiction might be off-putting to some.
Readers who have no knowledge of Brunanburh but a vague interest in Anglo-Saxon, or indeed English history in general, will find much to love here.
Take a look at Never Greater Slaughter for yourself with this exclusive chapter preview: