'Sons of the Citadel' is the sixth and final instalment in Peter Darman's epic Parthian Chronicles series - all of which have been reviewed previously on this site to great acclaim. This book came as something of a surprise, out of the blue. The previous instalment (Companions) was published some time ago and Darman had written another series (The Crusader Chronicles) in the mean time; although this book is set some time after the others in the series, it finishes it off beautifully and leaves the reader with a real sense of positive closure.
- Peter Darman
The Parthian Chronicles are a series of books about a Middle Eastern king in the time of the Romans. Taken as a slave after a battle, his adventures begin (in Book 1) with his escape from Italy as part of Spartacus' slave army. On returning to his home, he rapidly becomes king and a thorn in the side of Roman imperial intent in the region. From the very start of this series, I compared Darman's writing with Bernard Cornwell's Sharpe series and it is a comparison that continues to stand; all the more impressive over the course of two six-book series.
Without spoiling the plot for those wishing to partake, this book is set in the twilight years of Pacorus' reign. Although older, he remains capable of campaigning against an incoming Roman and Armenian army. The book tells of that campaign. As ever with Darman, historical accuracy is central to the gripping nature of the narrative. This campaign really happened with Mark Anthony leading a large Roman army of 100,000 men with a smaller Armenian army of 13,000 men in support. Equally Phraates, the newly crowned Parthian king of kings, did indeed march north to confront him.
There is also a maps page on Darman's website here which provide maps of the Parthian empire and Eastern Mediterranean. 'Sons of the Citadel' is available on Amazon as an e-book for £2.60 and also in hard copy. Although you could read this book on its own, I would heartily recommend starting at the beginning of the series and working your way through.