WOW, this was a real treat! Unlike many of the fantasy novels you read today, this Sacred Band Tale is steeped in ancient mythology, both tantalizingly beautiful and brutally savage. The story is populated by a fascinating cast of witches, mages, epic warriors, and Gods, each with his or her own motivations and agendas.
In this brief tale, we are introduced to some of the main characters in the Sacred Band Series. The story begins with Roxane, the witch, who, morphing into eagle form, flies back to Wizardwall, a land of dark sorcery and home of the archmage, Datan. Roxane is as beautiful and seductive as she is bloody. We also meet Tempus, aka "The Riddler", an epic warrior and his companion, Jihan, Froth Daughter of Enlil, who has newly taken on human form. They are journeying to do battle with Datan and the forces of magic in a land already ravaged by war. Into this mix comes a boy, Shamshi, son of Datan and a mortal woman, in whom mage-like powers have yet to be awakened as well as another warrior and companion of Tempus, Nico, who Roxane plans to seduce and conquer.
This is truly an epic drama. The writing is masterful and the imagery is magnificent with exquisite attention to detail. If you are a fan of Homer and Greek or Roman mythology, a fantasy freak, or just like plain good writing, then you will love this book and, from this reader, it comes most highly recommended.