Gates of Fire

I just wanted to thank everyone in the 300 Threads for mentioning the book Gates of Fire, I had never heard of this book. So far it is an exceptional read. And I would have to agree that it would make an excellent movie, IMHO.

You would probably also like the following:

The Ten Thousand - Michael Curtis Ford

The Last King - Michael Curtis Ford

The Last of the Amazons - Steven Pressfield

The Last Kingdon - Bernard Cornwell

Heh, just realized 3 out of 4 of those have “Last” in the title. Must be a historical fiction thing.

I also enjoyed Nicholas Nicastro’s “Isle of Stone” as a sort of bookend companion piece to Gates of Fire. It’s about the first time a Spartan force ended up surrendering, during a particular siege-blockade on a little island during the Pelopponesian war, and very much the opposite of the high-gloss romantic sheen they tend to get otherwise. On the other hand, it wouldn’t make nearly as entertaining a movie.

My boss told me about Gates of Fire and I enjoyed it from start to finish. I also highly recommend the following books by Wilbur Smith:

River God
The Seventh Scroll

The first is set at the end of the Egyptian Empire and is told from the viewpoint of a eunuch servant. Brutal and fascinating. The second is a neat twist as it’s more of an Indiana Jones adventure told from the viewpoint of archaeologists in the early 20th century searching for the ruins of the people from the first book.

There is a third book in the series, Warlock, that I never got around to picking up.

Following the Last theme, try the Last of the Wine.

I can’t recommend the Ten Thousand. It was tedious and none of the characters were particularily gripping.

David Gemmell’s Lord of the Silver Bow was a good read… haven’t got to the second one yet though, and how will the trilogy finish with the author now dead …?

Loyd Case recommended Gates of Fire to me years ago, when it first came out in paperback. Good book.

The publisher has said Gemmell’s wife is going to finish the 3rd book. David supposedly kept detailed notes so she has a lot of detail to work with. Which is dandy insofar as original intent for overall story goes, but you know, that page-by-page prose thing. . . .