Janklow & Nesbit UK

Battle Song

published by Hodder & Stoughton (2023)

1258: Magna Carta has failed, and the storm clouds of civil war are rolling across medieval England. Adam de Norton knows little of the gathering crisis; devoted to the virtues of chivalry and honour, he longs only to be knighted, and to reclaim his ancestral lands. But after a bloody hunting accident, he finds himself with a new master: the disgraced and landless knight Robert de Dunstanville, who does not hesitate to use the blackest stratagems in pursuit of victory.

Following Robert to the tournament fields of Europe, Adam is introduced to the brutal world of the melee, the ferocious mock battles in which knights compete for glory and riches. He soon learns the effectiveness of Robert's ruthless and sometimes dishonest methods of capturing prize money, and despite his master's caustic humour and savage temper, Adam gains a grudging respect for him. In the months that follow, he hones his fighting skills, and acquires a dangerous rival.

But with England plunging rapidly into war, Robert decides to throw in his lot with the rebel barons. The opposing forces meet in a battle that will decide the fate of England. But for Adam to prove himself in combat and win the honour of knighthood, he must overcome his last and greatest illusion: the belief that victory lies only in the hands of the just.

Other books by Ian Ross