The second novel of The Books of the Elements.
The wealthy Governor Saxa, of the great city of Carce, has generously and lavishly subsidized a theatrical/religious event. During this elaborate staging of Hercules founding a city on the shores of Lusitania, strange and dark magic turns the panoply into a chilling event. The sky darkens and the waves crash in the flooded arena. A great creature rises from the sea: a huge, tentacled horror on snake legs. It devastates the city, much to the delight of the crowd. A few in the audience, although not Saxa, understand that this was not mere stagecraft, but something much darker and more dangerous. If all signs are being read right, this illusion could signify a dreadful intrusion of supernatural powers into the real world. Saxa’s son, Varus, has been the conduit for such an event once before.
This new novel in David Drake’s chronicles of Carce, The Books of the Elements, is as powerful and elaborate as that fantastic theatrical event, a major fantasy for this year.
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Praise for The Legions of Fire:
“Drake keeps the action moving. Recommended for all action fantasy fans, not least because three of the four protagonists are on the verge of adulthood, which promises a bildungsroman atmosphere throughout the succeeding volumes.”
“Drake vividly recreates the attitudes of patrician Romans in this fantasy tale…. Fans of fantasy and historical fiction will enjoy the characters and their decidedly noncontemporary characters and their adventures."
“David Drake is thought of as a military SF author, but he’s actually written more fantasy than anything else in his long and impressive career. If you want to know why, read The Legions of Fire. Drake is one of the best fantasy writers this genre has ever produced.”
—Eric Flint, author of 1632