Much Fall of Blood
by Mercedes Lackey, Eric Flint, & Dave Freer
Cover Artist: Larry Dixon
Review by Mel Jacob
Baen Books Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9781439133514
Date: 18 May 2010 List Price $27.00 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Article /
Much Fall of Blood continues the series Heirs of Alexandria. In this alternative history/fantasy series, the Library of Alexandria wasn't destroyed and the Catholic Church uses magic albeit sparingly. The novel, set in 16th century, opens with the young Mongol prince Kildai falling from his horse. The next two bits focus on two magic users and then turns to Prince Manfred of Brittany, and Erik, his protector. In another switch, we meet Elizabeth Bartholdy, a sorcerer, who bargained with the dark powers for eternal youth. She seeks to free the imprisoned Vlad, Prince of Valachia. From official release/information:
Product Description: Prince Manfred and his mentor and bodyguard, the deadly warrior Erik, survived dangers and enemies both natural and supernmatural, and if they thought that their new mission was going to be anything but more of the same, they soon gave up on that hope. Returning from Jerusalem, they and their escort of knights of the Holy Trinity are escorting an envoy of II Khan Mongol to the lands of the Golden Horde-between the Black Sea and the Carpathians, which happen to be eastern bastion against their old enemies, the demon Chernobog and his possessed puppet, the Jangellion.
Unfortunately, what began as a diplomatic mission leads to Manfred and his knights being caught up in an inter-clan civil war, rescuingh a fugitive woman and her injured brother, and becoming involved in the problems of Prince Vlad, Duke of Valahia, who has been held as a hostage by King Emeric og Hungary until freed by Countess Elizabeth Batholdy to use as bait to capture a gropu pf nonhumans. Instead, the wolflike nonhumans, who masquerade as gypsies, free Prince Vlad, and help him to return to his homeland to raise revolt against Hungary and to renew age-old magics.
Manfred and Erik are forced into an alliance of convenience between the Golden Horde and the ancient magical forces of Valahia, as directed by the troubled Vlad. The magic calls for blood and Vlad is deathly afraid of it-and at the same time, is irresistibly drawn toward it...
(Source: Baen Books)