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The new series of "K" novels begins with Blood Tax, set in a very different era from the previous novels, 16th century, and location, the Fiefdom of Kostel on the Balkan Peninsula--right at the frontier dividing line between Muslim followers of the Ottoman Empire and Christian feudal serfs living and farming on the lands of the Hapsburg Monarchy. Turkish brigands attack Am Furtt, a small farming hamlet, creating terror, burning farms and abusing villagers. The objective of the Turks is to kidnap five-to-ten-year-old boys and girls as white slaves. The young ones are converted to Islam and prepared to serve the Sultan as loyal elitists--warriors, administrators, clergy and sex slaves. Maria is raped by the Azim, the leader. He divines that a child is conceived from the union and vows to return in five years to collect his son. After fighting battles on the shores of the Caspian Sea, Azim and his men return to Am Furtt. This time, the serfs are ready.
The author's books are well researched and authentically portray the difficult life of serfs living under the lord of the castle in the 1600's.