The Mask of Apollo: A Novel

Open Road Media
11
Free sample

This novel of ancient Greece, featuring Plato and a young actor, by the bestselling author of the Novels of Alexander the Great, is “a shining light” (Hilary Mantel, Man Booker Award–winning author of Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies).
In the fourth century BC, Nikeratos is an actor, a devotee of Plato, and a friend of Dion of Syracuse. Their relationship gives Nikeratos rare proximity to the Greek political stage at a moment when ambitions are about to collide. In Syracuse, the young tyrant Dionysios the Younger rules, but Dion is determined to bring democracy and strength to the city. In an effort to curb Dionysios’s excesses, Dion has Plato pose as a tutor—only to learn that the corrupt youth won’t be so easily contained. With a combination of erudition and storytelling force, Renault immerses the reader in intrigue and crafts a vibrant Syracuse that leaps off the page.

This ebook features an illustrated biography of Mary Renault including rare images of the author.
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About the author

Born in London as Eileen Mary Challans in 1905 and educated at the University of Oxford, Mary Renault trained as a nurse at Oxford’s Radcliffe Infirmary. It was there that she met her lifelong partner, fellow nurse Julie Mullard. After completing her training, Renault wrote her first novel, Purposes of Love, in 1937. In 1948, after her novel Return to Night won an MGM prize worth $150,000, she and Mullard immigrated to South Africa. There, Renault wrote the historical novels that would define her career. In 2006, Renault was the subject of a BBC 4 documentary, and her books, many of which remain in print on both sides of the Atlantic, are often sought after for radio and dramatic interpretation. In 2010, Fire From Heaven was shortlisted for the 1970 Lost Booker prize.
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4.5
11 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
Open Road Media
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Published on
Sep 10, 2013
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Pages
371
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ISBN
9781480432918
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Fairy Tales, Folk Tales, Legends & Mythology
Fiction / Historical / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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This is the forgotten Matter of Europe - a Song of Courtly Love and Betrayal, Adventure and Misfortune, sung by two Emperors, a Pope, a King, a Duke and two Counts. It is 1100 AD. In the east of Europe, battles are underway between Christians and Muslims, between Latin and Greek speakers, and between the Church and Crown. King Baldwin of Jerusalem, valiant knight and lusty bachelor, has wrested a sacred talisman from the Eastern Empire - the Palladium. With it, his kingdom and the civilisation it represents is in the ascendancy, and all fall before his sword. Yet he has a weakness - love - both for one woman, his mother, as well as his fellow man. Will it be his undoing? If it were up to Caesar Nicephoros Bryennius, Panhypersebastos, First Minister of the Roman Empire, Baldwin would not be the only one to fall. He schemes for the ancient crown of the Romans, and nothing can stand in his way. Nothing, perhaps, except his wife ... or himself. Four of Baldwin's knights, too, are struggling with their place in the world. Though they have risen high in Baldwin's service, their real love is questing after pilgrims. Thus they seek to lighten Baldwin's load, by offering him a service, while embarking on a great quest of their own. One that will lead them places that even they scarcely realise. Lowest on the ranks of society, below the common gaze, is Nicephoros' escaped slave, Jacob. He vies simply for freedom - the purest desire. Yet, in seeking to use the Palladium to achieve his goals, he stands to change the fate of all...
New York Times bestseller: A “highly superior historical novel” about the bond that grows between two men in ancient Athens (Saturday Review).
Alexias is a young aristocrat living during the end of Athens’s Golden Age. Prized for his beauty and athletic prowess, Alexias studies under Sokrates with his closest friend, Lysis. Together, the young men come of age in an Athens on the verge of great upheaval. They attend the Olympics, partake in symposia, fight on the battlefields of the Peloponnesian War, and fall in love.

The first of Mary Renault’s celebrated historical novels of ancient Greece, The Last of the Wine follows Alexias and Lysis into adulthood, when Athens is defeated by Sparta, the Thirty Tyrants take hold of the city, and the lives of both men are changed forever. Through their friendship, Renault opens a vista onto ancient Greek life, uncovering its vibrancy, culture, and political strife, and offers an unforgettable story of love, honor, loyalty, and the remarkable bond between two men.

This ebook features an illustrated biography of Mary Renault including rare images of the author.

“Mary Renault is a shining light to both historical novelists and their readers. She does not pretend the past is like the present, or that the people of ancient Greece were just like us. She shows us their strangeness; discerning, sure-footed, challenging our values, piquing our curiosity, she leads us through an alien landscape that moves and delights us.” —Hilary Mantel
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