Thursday, 24 October 2013

Steve McKay Reviews : The Oracles of Troy by Glyn ILiffe


by Glyn Iliffe
Glynn is giving away a copy so if you want to be in it, comment here on the post at the end!
Historical fiction is full of novels about Rome, but there's not so much written about that other incredible classical civilisation – Greece. So it was with great pleasure I found out Glyn Iliffe's new book was finally about to be released. And not only that, I managed to get an advance copy of it!

 Is it any good? Well, there have been three books in the series so far: King of Ithaca, The Gates of Troy and The Armour of Achilles and, in my opinion, all of them have been worth five stars, so there's a lot riding on this. Blending well-researched history with fantastic action equals a great series so far and I can happily tell you The Oracles of Troy is every bit as good as its predecessors.

Opening where the previous book left off, it doesn't take long to get into the action, with Odysseus using his fabled cunning to persuade an old acquaintance to join their Trojan war effort. This aspect of Odysseus's character is something that must be rather difficult to write – thinking up clever ideas all the time – but Iliffe has managed it superbly throughout the series and it really does add an interesting dimension to a genre that is often just about kicking ass and taking no prisoners.

That said, there's plenty of asses kicked in The Oracles of Troy as the war, finally, comes to a close with the Greeks building their legendary Trojan Horse (I won't go into detail in case I spoil the plot for anyone but really...everyone knows what happens right?!)
With a series like this, when the plots and characters are so well known and loved, it has to be a hard task to write them while retaining a sense of tension, suspense and excitement but have no fear, the book is a joy to read from beginning to end.

If there's a downside at all, it's the fact that Odysseus somehow manages to get everything right all the time but that's a trait of the source material and anyone reading the novel will know that anyway. This isn't straight historical fiction after all – realism isn't as important here as it is to someone like Bernard Cornwell – Oracles of Troy has fantasy elements to it as well and, if a Goddess happens to appear to our heroes to help them out of a tricky situation, great.

By the last page we are left with the next book nicely set-up – I just hope it doesn't take as long to get out as this one did!

Heartily recommended.

This Review is by Steve McKay
Author of Wolf's Head

Steve McKay


  1. Oh thank you so much for introducing me to her books! I'll buy at least the first two.

    1. Hey Kathy, I think you will find that Glyn is a fine gentleman ;)

  2. Wowie! What a great review, Steven, you've totally drawn me in! I absolutely loved, loved, loved (especially) _The Odyssey_, so this series really catches my attention. I've just now gone to Amazon for _King of Ithaca_ and shall be making my way to this newest one, no doubt.

  3. As someone who dwells in the Hellenes half of the year I shall be lapping these us like the puss the cream. Thank you for introducing me to this writer, Steven. I have a lot to read including your own but this is now on that list too.

  4. I have Glyn Ilffe's other books, and they are addictive, so I'm really looking forward to The Oracles of Troy. Great review Steve. If I had never read his work before, this review would certainly make me go and buy his books.

  5. Brilliant stuff, I'm sure you'll all love his books. :-)

  6. Replies
    1. If you would like to enter for the give away T Stoker, please leave us some way of contacting

  7. I, too, have Glynn's other books and enjoyed them all, mainly because they they flesh out the old legends without deviating from the main plot that has comne to be accepted as the standard version . I am looking forward to reading the fourth in the series