A Novel of Kublai Khan
By Conn Iggulden
(Delacorte Press, Hardcover, 9780385343053, 496pp.)
Publication Date: December 27, 2011
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Intrigue and treachery roil the vast Mongol nation as the heirs of Genghis Khan fight for control of his unprecedented empire—and of his mighty armies. History will turn on the outcome of their struggle. But only one man, dismissed by all the others, will boldly rise to the challenge with the courage and vision to forge the future, and with the strength to be called . . .
The novels of Conn Iggulden bring the past to thrilling life, from ancient Rome to thirteenth-century Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. Now he delivers the spectacular story of the rise of Genghis Khan’s grandson, a man destined to become one of the most remarkable rulers who ever lived—the legendary Kublai Khan.
A succession of ruthless leaders has seized power in the wake of the great Khan’s death—all descendants of Genghis, but none with the indomitable character that led a people to triumph. One grandson, Guyuk, decadent and vicious, seeks to consolidate his position through bribery and murder, pitting powerful factions against one another and straining the loyalties of the tribes to the breaking point.
Next comes his cousin, Mongke, who eliminates all possible opposition with breathtaking brutality and dispatches his younger brothers Kublai and Hulegu to far-flung territories, to test their mettle and their allegiance.
Hulegu displays his barbarity with the savage destruction of Baghdad and his clash with the Khan’s age-old enemies, the cult of assassins, who will strike deep into the heart of the nation. But it is Kublai—refined and scholarly, always considered too thoughtful to take power—who will devise new ways of warfare and conquest as he builds the dream city of Xanadu and pursues the ultimate prize: the ancient empire of Sung China. His gifts will serve him well when an epic civil war breaks out among brothers, the outcome of which will literally change the world.
Brilliantly researched and imagined, unforgettably told, Conqueror is a magnificent achievement from an enthralling writer at the peak of his powers, a must read for all lovers of history and storytelling on the grand scale.
Conn Iggulden is the author of four novels in the saga of the Khan Dynasty—Genghis: Birth of an Empire; Genghis: Lords of the Bow; Genghis: Bones of the Hills; and Khan: Empire of Silver—as well as the Emperor novels, which chronicle the life of Julius Caesar. He is also the co-author of the #1 New York Times bestseller The Dangerous Book for Boys and The Dangerous Book of Heroes. He lives with his wife and children in Hertfordshire, England, where he is working on his next Emperor book.
Praise for Conn Iggulden’s novels of the Khan Empire
“Invigorating . . . zesty historical fiction, the kind with plenty of unbridled combat, accurate research, rampaging hordes and believable characters from very different cultures whose motivation rings true across the centuries.”—USA Today
“Readers who enjoy well-researched tales of historical adventure with an emphasis on political intrigue, exotic settings, and military conflict will enjoy the ride.”—Library Journal
“This is epic historical fiction at its finest: exciting, suspenseful, colorful and well-grounded in fact.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“This appropriately page-turning treatment of a sweeping historical saga will appeal to fans of gritty combat fiction.”—Booklist
“Iggulden writes with sweep and immediacy.”—The Christian Science Monitor