Legionary The Scourge of Thracia by Gordon Doherty

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Typically I look forward to the new releases from Gordon Doherty as he has been a favorite of mine for a few years now.  Also typically, I race through the new release in the utter delight of being unable to put the book down.  Finally, typically, I am devastated when I finish the book because now I have to wait for the next one.  These three typical characterizations were in full force while reading the fourth installment of the Legionary series.  In this edition, the XI Claudia, or what is left of them after book three, is given the task of rebuilding the Legion while defending a strategic mountain pass against the Gothic horde led by Fritigern.  Unknown to the Romans, one of the Goth’s leaders, a very, very nasty specimen, has recruited a troop of Huns and this has a devastating impact on the Roman forces.  While all this is going on, the author gives us more insights into the minds of Pavo and even more so the mind of Tribune Gallus.  These two main characters have been through a lot and Mr. Doherty does a superb job in allowing the reader see them wrestling with their troubled minds and souls.

Eventually Pavo and the rest end up at Trajan’s Gate a mountain pass in modern day Bulgaria in another seemingly impossible situation.  Farnobious, the very, very nasty Goth has broken away from Fritigern and leads his Goths and Huns on a mission to destroy the Romans at Trajan’s Gate.  The descriptive ability of the author stands out throughout the book but I found his blizzard scene the most compelling(maybe because I just went through a blizzard blitz this past winter.)

One more typical feature of any of the author’s books is his penchant for intricate and intriguing plot twists…and boy, are there ever some of those in this book.  Be forewarned…there is stuff happening that will make you glad book five is in the works.  5 stars and a hearty Hoover Book Reviews recommendation.

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