"Great and different alternate history"
Depending on who you are the year is either 1279 or
1863. Bilalistan is divided between Aztecs mostly to the
south, Zulus and Arabs in the heartland, and some Vikings
to the Northeast off the ocean. The native residents fled
west towards the other ocean. To work the land, ignorant
barbarians taken from the continent due east toil as slaves.
The coexistence between the three prime powers is
turning uglier. Caught in the midst of the inevitably of
war are two young boys. Slave Aidan O'Dere was taken from
his Erin home while Kai is the youngest son of slavemaster
Wikil Abu Ali. Though Dar Kush Plantation is known for its
lenient treatment of the barbaric whites, going as far as
allowing their pagan beliefs of worshipping the Son of
Mary, the slaves hide their anger and humiliation. Soon
due to dangerous circumstances caused by the increasing
tension between the superpowers, slave Aidan and master son
Wikil, though "friends" on the estate, must learn to trust
one another if they are to survive.
Using an incredible pivot point (Socrates fleeing
Athens for Alexandria), Steven Barnes provides an amazing
alternate history tale that never slows down yet makes the
audience ponder events. The action packed story line
contains a rich background that enables the reader to
accept Mr. Barnes' premise and the occurrence of the
subsequent events. LION'S BLOOD is a must read for sub-
genre fans, but also historical fiction readers will want
to do so too.
Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted February 1, 2002