Novel Suggestions Rotating Header Image

Silk Road by Colin Falconer

Silk Road is the first of Colin Falconer’s historical fiction novels that I’ve read so far, and from the quality of this piece of work, I’m certainly looking forward to reading more. After doing a little research, I discovered that he has a fairly extensive back catalogue of previously published novels, and that he favours a “hands-on” approach to his research — travelling extensively to gather background information and give an authentic feel to his storylines. A tough job, but I suppose someone has to do it!

So if you are a fan of historical fiction, click the link below to see what I made of this epic Eastern adventure.

Read on for a full review…

-- Silk Road by Colin Falconer a Review by Des Greene --

The story takes place in the thirteenth century; in the Holy Land the forces of the Christian armies allied to the Vatican, are starting to succumb to the relentless pressure from the Saracens. If this is to be halted, some unusual, and some might say unholy, allegiances must be considered.

Stepping up to the mark comes, Josseran Sarrazini, a Knight Templar who is struggling to live with his inner guilt and vowing to atone for his shameful past. He is assigned to escort William, a papal ambassador, on a quest to convert the distant Mongol tribes, and win them over as allies to their cause.

This provides the backdrop for an epic and eventful journey that spans a huge swathe of the middle and far east, and it is one that provides action, romance, and beautifully descriptive writing by the cartload. The level of research that has been undertaken is clearly evident, but without ever becoming intrusive on the story. We have all read the type of historical fiction that uses clumsy tricks and superfluous sidekicks to impart information; Silk Road is a far cry from that, and un-selfconsciously delivers us into its world without apparent effort. Top marks to Colin Falconer for this, as it can be one of the most annoying traits of books of this genre.

This is a fairly hefty read, at 450 or more pages, but I can honestly say that I enjoyed it from cover to cover. If I had to pick a fault, I might say that Josseran is at times imbued with a rather more modern and anti-establishment outlook than perhaps is likely, but for me this just made for a more interesting and amusing characterisation – the way he bounces and sparks off William is one of the strengths of the plot. Other than this (which now I’ve written it, hardly amounts to a criticism) I honestly can’t recall anything else that got in the way of a thoroughly entertaining read.

Highly recommended for historical fiction fans.

Already read Silk Road? What did you think of it? Please post a comment below, Novel Suggestions is always keen to hear your opinions.

Novel Suggestions only provides fiction book reviews of books that we personally recommend. We don’t spend our valuable time writing reviews of books which we feel would be a waste of your valuable time!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *