Book Review: Besieged (The First Crusade, Book Two) by Richard Foreman

Genre: Historical fiction
Publisher: Sharpe Books
Pub date: 19 May 2020
Rating: 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟🌟

1098.

Antioch.

The besiegers have become the besieged.

Kerbogha the Dreadful and his grand army intend to surround and starve their enemies.

The crusaders need a miracle. But they may have found one in the shape of the Holy Lance.

Bohemond of Taranto realises that the pilgrims must fight or die.

But to fight they must know their enemy. Bohemond instructs Edward Kemp, an English knight, to gather intelligence on Kerbogha and the Muslim army. But in attempting to save the crusaders, Edward may damn himself.

Triumph and tragedy await on the plains of Antioch, where the course of the crusade – and history – will be altered forever.

The second book in the series picks up from where the first ended. The pilgrims have been victorious in their siege of Antioch but it is not the relief they assumed it would be.

Fast on their heels is the army of Kerbogha and now the pilgrims have become the besieged.

Within the walls of Antioch, starvation is beginning to cause much strife.

Sir Edward Kemp who was injured in the siege and Thomas, the young squire remain safe within the walls but each face their own demons from the events they’ve faced so far.

Bohemond and Raymond of Toulouse battle for supremacy whilst Bishop Adhemar struggles to maintain his hope.

The armies of the pilgrims and Kerbogha are both aware they must soon face each other.

Foreman has continued where he left off and I was pleased to see the previous characters refined further as their individual stories and struggles advance as well as newer characters introduced and developed.

The details of the conditions faced by the pilgrims are expressive and vivid and bring to light the hardships they must have endured.

I like how the story is told through the viewpoints of various people and was particularly glad to see the archer Owen prove himself yet again.

This is a thoroughly engaging read, shining a light on events I have not previously read much about. I found myself drawn in from the start. I do think this could be read as a stand alone but personally I would recommend reading Siege first as its a great introduction to the events and the characters.

My review of Siege is here

Besieged is available here

Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

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