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Sicania Rising

Sicania Rising3 Stars

Sicania Rising by Daniel Buckley is a work of fiction set in the ancient times of sea trade routes and praises to gods for their help in all matters of life. The story features several characters and a depth of detail sure to please any lover of historical fiction, especially of the Mediterranean variety.

One of the great rulers, Seidon, seeks to make headway on the islands of Sicania to further strengthen his hold on the trade routes of the Mediterranean. Meanwhile, his sons are hoping to be elected as the new rulers of the land but seem to have differing views on how to govern. Several other characters have roles to play as the power vacuum of the Mediterranean attracts all interested and worthy seafarers, creating a dynamic and intriguing story for the reader.

Particularly, I enjoyed the descriptions of adventuring and sea warfare. It was interesting to see how wars on the water would have taken place back then, and the author does a good job of putting the reader right in the middle of the battles to soak in all of the details he provides. Language issues do limit some of this, but the strength of the story still shines through the errors, leaving the reader with a solid understanding of what happened in each situation.

It’s unfortunate that the author doesn’t spend more time developing the characters, because they are interesting and beg to be fleshed out. The story has a tendency to jump into a bit of character development and dialogue, only to quickly fast forward through time with more exposition, leaving the reader’s investment in the characters lacking. Otherwise the historical accuracy of this book is the true gem of the story. If you are a fan of historical fiction you will enjoy the depth of detail delivered in this novel.

Sometimes the writing is difficult to follow as it often lacks structure and has inconsistent grammar. It’s a shame because there are glimpses of a great narrative hiding under all of the mistakes.

Overall, Mr. Buckley does a fantastic job of establishing a fictional conflict in a well-documented historical setting. However, his focus on historical facts and neglect of meaningful character development might leave fans of fiction wanting more. For those that enjoy nonfiction, historical sea battles and Mediterranean politics, this story is worth your time.

Pages: 235 | ASIN: B01M3X3YDG

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