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A Secret History (Book of Ash, Bk 1)
A Secret History - Book of Ash, Bk 1
Author: Mary Gentle
There is more than one history of the world . . . — In the mid-fifteenth century there was Burgundy, the jewel of Europe-opulent and powerful, the undisputed center of an uncivilized world. — In an epoch of war and madness there was Ash. A girl born in mud and dung, she slew her first men while only eight. Scarred and ravaged, but still bea...  more »
ISBN-13: 9780380788699
ISBN-10: 0380788691
Publication Date: 10/1/1999
Pages: 432
  • Currently 3.2/5 Stars.

3.2 stars, based on 24 ratings
Publisher: Eos
Book Type: Paperback
Members Wishing: 0
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

Cattriona avatar reviewed A Secret History (Book of Ash, Bk 1) on + 200 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 7
This is a very gritty, well researched tale of medieval warfare, and a woman who leads it. It is quite an interesting story. It is not, however, for the prudish or squeamish, since the rape of an 8-year-old occurs on the first page, the "F" word is liberally sprinkled throughout, and the very realistic depictions of life during that time are not always pretty and clean. For those who don't mind the above, a recommended read.
reviewed A Secret History (Book of Ash, Bk 1) on + 53 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
good fantasy novel
rook avatar reviewed A Secret History (Book of Ash, Bk 1) on
Helpful Score: 1
Worth your time if you are looking for realism in medieval warfare, lifestyle, clothing and politics. This is a fantastic story for those who like historical fiction! Also good if you prefer experiencing the world from "inside the character", a trait of which Mary Gentle is a superior writer. I found myself identifying with many of the characters in Ash and have since gone on to collect the entire series.

NOT good if you cannot handle the blood, filth, and profanity inherent in the lifestyle of a soldier. Personally, I thought the realism enriched the story, but it may not be the same for everyone.

The only detraction was the interjection of "emails" between "manuscripts." (Ash's tale is told through several different manuscripts which are being researched by an historian, who is in turn discussing them with his publisher.) This modern intrusion is necessary to explain why certain things are happening in Ash's time, but it was like reading two books that had been hastily shoved into one another.
Read All 3 Book Reviews of "A Secret History Book of Ash Bk 1"

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