Book Review: The Pale Horseman by Bernard Cornwall
Cornwall maintains the action filled momentum of The Last Kingdom in this sequel novel, with a lively and animated plot that was consistent throughout the book. I enjoyed the rawness of the story-telling which complemented the book’s historical setting, during an age of battles, war and rebellion. It almost added an extra layer of harsh realism to the abundant portrayals of sex and violence.
The characterisation was also a strong feature of this novel, especially in the case of Uhtred’s ongoing internal conflict, which makes him fight alongside his Saxon countrymen, but also yearn the life of a Danish warrior. He thus brings upon himself the disdain of all those around him who scorn his pagan leanings. The people of Wessex are fiercely loyal to their Christian faith, yet as an affront to his people, Uhtred openly wears Thor’s hammer around his neck, dresses like a Dane and is overly familiar with the sorceress Iseult, despite being married to Mildrith…
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