In the turbulent aftermath of the French Revolution Napoleon Bonaparte stands accused of treachery and corruption. His reputation is saved by his skill in leading his men to victory in Italy and Egypt. But then he must restore order in France and find peace or victory over her enemies: England - and Arthur Wellesley (the future Duke of Wellington).
Wellesley is leading a vast army in India, where British interests are under threat. The campaign will result in the creation of the Raj - the jewel in the British Empire's crown. Wellesley returns to England a hardened veteran and more determined than ever to end France's domination of Europe.
Both Wellesley and Napoleon intend to win - whatever the cost. Who will ultimately succeed?
Egypt, AD 49. Cato, one of the youngest Prefects of the Roman army, and Centurion Macro have a tough posting: to track down and destroy a gang of former gladiators who have turned to piracy. Driven by vengeance, these hardened brutes have been defiling temples, sinking Roman ships, and slaughtering men, women and children.
What's worse is that they are doing it all under the name of Macro and Cato, in an attempt to stir up a rebellion against the occupying forces. And it's working. If Macro and Cato don't stop the pirates in time, it could be the beginning of the end for the Roman Empire...
Napoleon Bonaparte joins the French military on the eve of the Revolution. He believes leadership is won by merit, not by noble birth. When anarchy explodes in Paris he's thrust into the revolutionary army poised to march against Britain.
As two mighty Empires embark on a bloody duel, Wesley and Bonaparte prepare to face a sworn enemy, unaware that the fate of Europe will one day lie in their hands...
1809. Viscount Wellington and Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte have made their mark as military commanders. Lifelong enemies, they both believe their armies are strong enough to destroy any rival. But in war victory can never be certain.
While Wellington's success continues in Spain, Napoleon feels the sting of failure. Yet despite a disastrous Russian campaign and humiliating defeat at Leipzig, he persists in fighting on.
With Napoleon's power waning, the newly titled Duke of Wellington is perfectly placed to crush the tyrant. But his enemy refuses to surrender, and so the two giants must face a final reckoning on the bloody battlefield of Waterloo...
It is late summer AD 44, and the battle-weary Roman legions are in their second year of campaigning against the British tribes. The troop' commander, General Plautius, is under considerable pressure from the emperor to crush the natives once and for all. Centurions Macro and Cato are with the crack Second Legion under the precarious leadership of Centurion Maximus, and it's their task to hold a ford across the river Tamesis when the natives are forced into a trap.
But Maximus's nerve breaks at the critical point, allowing the enemy leader and his men to escape. Outraged by this failure, General Plautius orders the decimation of Macro and Cato's unit. Their choice: die, or escape to become fugitives pursued by soldiers of their own ruthless army. Hiding from their former comrades, as well as the Britons, Cato's small band of fugitives has only one chance to redeem itself before its soldiers are hunted down, like animals.
It is spring A.D. 45 in Rome, and Centurions Macro and Cato, dismissed from the Second Legion in Britain, are waiting for an investigation into their involvement in the death of a fellow officer. It is then that the imperial secretary, the devious Narcissus, makes them an offer they can't refuse: to rescue an imperial agent who has been captured by pirates operating off the Illyrian coast. With him were scrolls vital to the safety of the emperor and the future of Rome.
But Narcissus also sends Vitellius, an old enemy of the two centurions. The three officers set out from Ravenna with the imperial fleet but the pirates are forewarned and the Romans pay a heavy price. Outnumbered by the enemy, surrounded by rumors of treachery, and endangered by Vitellius's desire to redeem himself, Centurions Macro and Cato must find the pirate base to avert a disaster that could destroy the emperor and the very core of Rome.
"[A] rip-roaring, thoroughly entertaining tale of swashbuckling adventure from one of the most exciting writers of historical fiction."---Scottish Daily Record