Chivalry: A Jake Savage Adventure

Adult
Rated 4.29/5 based on 7 reviews
Magic, Murder and Mayhem in the Middle Ages!

With the code of chivalry being dragged through the mud and blood of war-torn France will anyone stand up for what is right?

Perhaps Jake Savage, a common archer, will stick up for the oppressed? But to do so would be to betray his comrades and his country.

Chivalry is a short story set during the Hundred Years War. More

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Published by Alt Hist Press
Words: 4,750
Language: English
ISBN: 9781465923295
About Mark Lord

I am a UK based writer, living in the southeast of England. I mostly write historical fiction and fantasy, although I also have been known to write a bit of Science Fiction now and again.

My favourite authors include Gene Wolfe, Ursula le Guin and Iain Banks, and I'm currently getting into Dan Simmons and Neal Stephenson. Outside SF&F I enjoy the thrillers of Robert Harris and I love Tolstoy's War and Peace.

I am also the Editor of Alt Hist, the new magazine of Historical Fiction and Alternate History.

My reading tastes, I think, are fairly broad. I like Gene Wolfe, Leo Tolstoy, Ursula le Guin and Iain Banks in particular, and I’m currently getting into Dan Simmons and Neal Stephenson.

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Reviews

Review by: Christopher Moss (formerly Nan Hawthorne) on Oct. 20, 2011 :
The story where Arrthurian romance and gritty Hundred Years War "goddamns" (English soldiers) clash is a brilliant construction, done well and effectively. A squadron of knight, soldiers and archers come across a scene in the mountains as they desperately search for food and shelter. At the end of a bridge over a ravine is a knight all in black armor, unmoving, and a beautiful lady in a pavilion. The modern reader, aware of the chivalric image, knows what's up, but, except for the protagonist Jack, no one else thinks anything of it. What happens when the crude meets the ethereal and Jack transcends both is the point of this story. Lorde manages some quite marvelous images and writing. The story's end is intentionally nebulous.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)

Review by: White Raven Press on Oct. 02, 2011 :
This is a story that does not shirk from the blood, snot, and brutality of medieval warfare, but still leaves a note of hope for the human species.

English archer Jake hoped to find chivalry in war against France, but instead discovered that most men are anything but good and valorous--even the men he fights beside. This is never more apparent than when his band of fighters tries to approach a French castle in search of food, but are thwarted but something not quite possible.

Mark Lord's writing is very readable, and his descriptions and characters evocative. There was no question that I would have to read straight through to the end in a headlong rush to find out what would happen, and the ending was nothing I would have expected from the beginning, yet once I got there, no other ending would have fit so well.

I will certainly read more from this writer.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)

Review by: ediFanoB on Sep. 14, 2011 :
My Expectations
I expected a short and entertaining story which gives a first impression of the English archer Jake Savage.


The Delivery

Be warned! This is a violent story and not a Sunday afternoon tea time read.
I don't know how familiar you are with Hundred Years War. It was a horrible time full of blood, violence and disease. In the end France lost half of its population.

Mark Lord delivers a story which has nothing to do with an adventure an average reader would expect. I have been surprised too. I'm not addicted to violence and I think the story would not work on the way it does without all the violence. Mark Lord gives a very intense and painstakingly depiction of the horrors of war. The setting is an unexpected one and the supernatural sparkle intensifies the atmosphere a lot. The description of the surrounding is well dosed and fit. The story delivers one more example which you find so often in military history:
Arrogance combined with power does not always win the day.
Jake Savage seems to be a good archer. Compared to his comrades he acts cautious. Beside that he does something which one should not expect from a common soldier: He think and reflects his situation.
The pacing is excellent and Mark Lord does not waste a word too much. The end is a tricky one. It is not an expected one and it delivers not the 100% solution. But it is as satisfying as the story itself.


Thumbs up or down
I hope there will be more Jake Savage stories (a full novel would be great) soon.
Chivalry: A Jake Savage Adventure satisfied my craving for historical fiction with a mystery touch which is taking a greater part within my reading comfort zone of epic fantasy, steampunk and space opera.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: Kvaad Press on Sep. 09, 2011 :
The subtitle is "A Jake Savage Adventure" but this is not an adventure of the type one might expect. The brutality of the period is accurately depicted -- a welcome change from the sanitized and idealized portrayals that are all too common. The ending is unexpected, but satisfying and fits well with the tone and nature of the story. I enjoyed it and will be looking for more of Jake's adventures in the future.
(reviewed within a week of purchase)

Review by: Peter Alan Orchard on Sep. 09, 2011 :
The weather in France is foul and Sir Robert's company are hungry and desperate. Jake Savage and his companions are beating their way through the rain in search of provisions when they come to a tent, a lady and a knight in black armour. The knight is a formidable opponent, but the lady's challenge is clear: conquer him and take me and my lands. The combat is brutal, but Jake's humanity leads him to a fitting conclusion.

This is a strongly-written and enjoyable tale with a good feeling for medieval storytelling and I am happy to recommend it.
(reviewed within a week of purchase)

Review by: Jayden Woods on Sep. 05, 2011 :
A grim story with raw, shameless details and a sparkle of the supernatural. Great pacing, with just enough explanation to keep you on track without ever revealing the destination. I enjoyed it.
(reviewed the day of purchase)

Review by: Anna Sykora on Sep. 04, 2011 :
I enjoyed this dark tale of Medieval derring-do, for the mystery it did NOT explain. Too many stories give us cut-and-dried situations, with endings too pat to thrill us. Mark Lord seems a rising dark star.

Anna Sykora
(reviewed within a week of purchase)

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