Published August, 2007
In the ancient mists of time, a ragged band of refugees takes to the icy sea to escape the war-torn Scythian plains of Indo-Europe. Although the Cruithne, named for their chief, find a new home in a distant and unfamiliar land, fewer than two hundred survive the perilous journey. In the solitude of the northern Scottish highlands, they build an isolated civilization on the ideals of freedom and peace. For thousands of years, they conceal their existence from a predatory world.
But now an insatiable thirst for conquest has brought the Romans to the shores of Britannia. After easily subduing the southern barbarian tribes, the Romans are astonished by the stubborn resistance of the Cruithne, whom they call the "Picts." Although the Picts have always been a loose affiliation of tribes, the extraordinary threat to their very survival now inspires them to unite under the leadership of one indomitable man: Calach.
Can Calach guide the new Pictish nation to victory over the inexorable Roman advance, or will the Empire that has swallowed so many before them determine the Pict history?
Jack Dixon creates a surreal landscape where the eerie sounds of a hundred pipes precede the Picts’ attacks on a Roman camp, and phantoms tattooed with demonic symbols emerge silently out of the night to kill their sleeping enemy. The sounds of the bodhrán drums pulse throughout the book, leaving the reader wanting to know more about the warriors who fought against the might of the greatest empire on earth and prevailed.”
— Mary Simonsen, author of Searching for Pemberley
A straightforward tale of heroism in an ancient, barbaric culture.
— PODBRAM (Print on Demand Book Reviews and More)
Jack Dixon has done an impressive job of writing an historical fiction piece that is highly readable, action filled, and evocative. I believe anyone who enjoys ancient history should find this an interesting, informative and entertaining work. Congratulations to Mr. Dixon on a fine first novel.
— Barry Yelton, author of Scarecrow in Gray