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Tom Holland received a double first from Cambridge. He has adapted Homer, Herodotus, Thucydides and Virgil for BBC Radio. His scholarly style is perfect to reposition him as a writer of non-fiction as well as fiction.
New Paperback edition. The Apostle Paul is a controversial church figure. Many theologians accuse Paul of starting a new religion: of hijacking early Christianity in a different direction. Is this a fair charge? Tom Holland points us to a neglected fact, that the Jews in the first century AD would view concepts of salvation through the Exodus of Israel from Egypt to the promised land. Until now, a real elephant in the centre of the hermeneutical room. Such a viewpoint opens up new understanding on Pauline studies - it is true of this book that it will change your view of the New Testament and deserves to radically alter New Testament studies in Universities, Theological Colleges and Seminaries around the world.
Of all the civilisations existing in the year 1000, that of Western Europe seemed the unlikeliest candidate for future greatness. Compared to the glittering empires of Byzantium or Islam, the splintered kingdoms on the edge of the Atlantic appeared impoverished, fearful and backward. But the anarchy of these years proved to be, not the portents of the end of the world, as many Christians had dreaded, but rather the birthpangs of a radically new order. MILLENNIUM is a stunning panoramic account of the two centuries on either side of the apocalyptic year 1000. This was the age of Canute, William the Conqueror and Pope Gregory VII, of Vikings, monks and serfs, of the earliest castles and the invention of knighthood, and of the primal conflict between church and state. The story of how the distinctive culture of Europe - restless, creative and dynamic - was forged from out of the convulsions of these extraordinary times is as fascinating and as momentous as any in history.
Wiltshire, during the dying days of Oliver Cromwell's Republic. Robert Vaughan is the son of a Parliamentarian officer who is investigating a series of grisly murders which suggest a link with Satanic rituals at Stonehenge. The return of a notoriously wicked Cavalier, signalling the impending royalist restoration, leads to a terrible tragedy for the Vaughans. Robert's flight from his violent, terrifying past leads him to Restoration London, where he works as scribe for Milton, and where he survives the Plague and the Great Fire. But Robert is led along a dark path, to vampirism and beyond, as he devotes himself to gaining the powers that will enable him to fight an evil killer of seemingly satanic powers. He will travel the globe, from the ancient ghetto of Prague to the virgin forest of the New World, as he aims to gain revenge on those who betrayed him.
In 1888 Dr John Eliot returns to London haunted by the memory of a terrible expedition to a remote Himalayan kingdom, where he had uncovered horrors far beyond the frontiers of science. Yet Eliot's faith in reason is to be tested even further when the body of a friend, drained white of blood, is dragged up from the Thames, and another associate goes missing. Eliot's quest to uncover the mystery reveals a deadly conspiracy, but then, in the lair of an enigmatic Eastern adventuress, he glimpses hints of a truth yet more extraordinary, of dark and terrible pleasures, of a whole new world ... Vampires and immortals walk the gas-lit streets of Victorian London, mingling with Oscar Wilde, Bram Stoker and Lord Byron, and Tom Holland meshes fact with fiction in this brilliantly imaginative novel of passion and suspense.
Infamous poet Lord Byron comes to life with incendiary brilliance in this spellbinding blend of gothic imagination and documented fact. Wandering in the mountains of Greece, the supreme sensualist is drawn to the beauty of a mysterious fugitive slave; soon he is utterly entranced, and his fate is sealed. He embarks on a life of adventure even his genius could not have foreseen; chosen to enjoy powers beyond those any vampire has ever known, Byron traverses the centuries and enters a dark, intoxicating world of long-lost secrets, ancient arts and scorching excesses of evil. But Byron's gift is also his torment: an all-consuming thirst that withers life at the root, damning all those he loves. With its impeccable scholarship and breathtaking storytelling, THE VAMPYRE is a wonderful combination of fact and fantasy.
In 480 BC, Xerxes, the King of Persia, led an invasion of mainland Greece. Its success should have been a formality. For seventy years, victory - rapid, spectacular victory - had seemed the birthright of the Persian Empire. In the space of a single generation, they had swept across the Near East, shattering ancient kingdoms, storming famous cities, putting together an empire which stretched from India to the shores of the Aegean. As a result of those conquests, Xerxes ruled as the most powerful man on the planet. Yet somehow, astonishingly, against the largest expeditionary force ever assembled, the Greeks of the mainland managed to hold out. The Persians were turned back. Greece remained free. Had the Greeks been defeated at Salamis, not only would the West have lost its first struggle for independence and survival, but it is unlikely that there would ever have been such and entity as the West at all. Tom Holland's brilliant new book describes the very first 'clash of Empires' between East and West. Once again he has found extraordinary parallels between the ancient world and our own. There is no competing popular book describing these events.
'The Book that really held me, in fact, obsessed me, was Rubicon . . . This is narrative history at its best. Bloody and labyrinthine political intrigue and struggle, brilliant oratory, amazing feats of conquest and cruelty' Ian McEwan, Books of the Year, Guardian 'Marvellously readable' Niall Ferguson The Roman Republic was the most remarkable state in history. What began as a small community of peasants camped among marshes and hills ended up ruling the known world. Rubicon paints a vivid portrait of the Republic at the climax of its greatness - the same greatness which would herald the catastrophe of its fall. It is a story of incomparable drama. This was the century of Julius Caesar, the gambler whose addiction to glory led him to the banks of the Rubicon, and beyond; of Cicero, whose defence of freedom would make him a byword for eloquence; of Spartacus, the slave who dared to challenge a superpower; of Cleopatra, the queen who did the same. Tom Holland brings to life this strange and unsettling civilization, with its extremes of ambition and self-sacrifice, bloodshed and desire. Yet alien as it was, the Republic still holds up a mirror to us. Its citizens were obsessed by celebrity chefs, all-night dancing and exotic pets; they fought elections in law courts and were addicted to spin; they toppled foreign tyrants in the name of self-defence. Two thousand years may have passed, but we remain the Romans' heirs.