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download ✓ PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook  Mary Renault

Funeral Games“Renault’s best historical novel yet Every detail has solid historical testimony to support it”– New York Review of Books After Alexander’s death in 323 BChis only direct heirs were two unborn s. I didn’t expect to be doing this but I’m actually marking Funeral Games down from the first two books in Mary Renault’s trilogy; Fire From Heaven and The Persian Boy The difference Renault jumps about a lot in time here Of course her previous novels did this too – all of them were selective in their scenes not comprehensive – but this time round Renault covers a much wider span of time the events of thirty seven years in total a wider range than the first two books combined And historically those thirty seven years were chock full of conflicts plots and sudden reversals of fortune as Alexander’s generals duked it out for a slice of his empire As a result Renault ends up jumping from event to event and some scenes especially in the second half of the book feel abbreviated and the characters sketched rather than fully immersively formed That was my single major problem with Funeral Games It was difficult to get into the story in the same way I had with The Persian Boy or Fire From Heaven when Renault had to sketch the huge cast of characters that pop up over these thirty seven years and resort to a tiny brushstroke here and there to try and convey much about these charactersThe first half of the book felt much better written than the second half largely because it spends a lot of time on the immediate aftermath of Alexander’s death and Renault can lavish pages on events and developing the characters involved It distinctly feels like a coherent narrative This section of the novel retains Renault’s signature deft touch at characterisations and breaking down complex events into something lucid and understandable on a human level without detracting from their complexity In the second half where many years are spanned and characters far apart in location there is a greater degree of summarisation going onA positive addition is that we get inside the heads of some of the people most closely connected to Alexander – family members and the comrades who knew him the best Through their eyes we finally see Alexander how and why he was revered after his death and how some who fought to carve up his empire for themselves failed spectacularly A sense of ominous foreboding and unease permeates the whole book as the empire crumbles and some of Alexander’s old friends try to preserve it and his memory others make a grab for power and others simply see the writing on the wall The character of Ptolemy provides what I felt was Renault’s opinion on the failure of Alexander’s empire – the nature of Alexander was a mystery he says that could inspire great deeds and achieve the unachievable and with his death they are all left merely fallible men8 out of 10

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characters Funeral Games ¸ PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook à “Renault’s best historical novel yet Every detail has solid historical testimony to support it”– New York Review of Books After Alexander’s death in 323 BChis only direct heirs were two unborn sons and a simpleton half brother Every long simmering faction exploded into tRmy Most failed and were killed in the attempt For no one possessed the leadership to keep the great empire from crumbling But Alexander’s legend endured to spread into worlds he had seen only in dreams. Whereas The Persian Boy made me want to linger this one made me want to get through it uickly because I knew everything would go to hell in a handbasket in a major way Like Anna says in her review it's that third book few authors would have the gumption to write From the intimate loving dignity of Bagoas' voice it switches to a brisker tone; a chronicle still beautifully written but also much matter of fact of how after the golden hero's death his legacy falls rapidly and perhaps inevitably there was only one Alexander to pieces his lovers dead or irreversibly diminished his potential heirs' future precarious at best his generals and former friends tearing down each other and his kingdomPtolemy was the only breath of fresh air wisely choosing to stay out of the succession wars and go found a dynasty in Egypt instead I'd always liked him but I loved him madly for thinking of Bagoas and making sure he had a place that might eventually mend his soul a bit; it hurt so much to see Bagoas reduced to a broken shell and his offhand mention of the only reason he didn't kill himself because he didn't want to intrude on Alexander and Hephaistion's reunion made me cry long after I thought I was doneApart from Bagoas my sympathy here lay mostly with the women Roxane Eurydike and Olympias who tried to make a place for themselves after Alexander's death and were thwarted Roxane and Olympias have mostly been characterised as ruthless murderous harpies but let's be honest either of them could've done as good a job or better as any of the men who grasped for power; and Eurydike was mostly lacking age and experienceThe whole thing stays pretty brutal all the way through so I was glad she chose to end on the chapter with Ptolemy; it was a little bit of a breath of relief

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Ons and a simpleton half brother Every long simmering faction exploded into the vacuum of power Wives distant relatives and generals all vied for the loyalty of the increasingly undisciplined Macedonian a. The Alexander the Great trilogy was my first reading of Renault She does so much with so few words She's now my second favorite HF author along side Patrick O'Brian