The lion Of Cairo - Scott Oden

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The lion Of Cairo
Scott Oden
Bantam Press
UK Publication Date

Cairo, 1167 AD.

On the banks of the river Nile, from a palace of gold and lapis lazuli, the Fatimid Caliph al Hadid rules over a crumbling empire. His city is awash with intrigues and in the shadow of the Grey Mosque, generals andemirsjockey for position under the scheming eyes of the powerful grand vizier, Jalal. In the crowdedSouk, these factions use murder and terror to silence their opposition... Egypt is bleeding and the scent draws her enemies in like sharks: the Sultan of Damascus, the pious Nur al-Din, whose master is the rival Caliph of Baghdad; Shirkuh, the swaggering Kurd who would lead the armies of Damascus to victory and then, of course, Amalric, Christian king of Jerusalem whose insatiable greed knows no bounds.

Yet the Caliph of Cairo has an unexpected ally: an old man who lives in a place that even eagles fear. He is Shaykh al-Jabal, called the Old Man of the Mountain, and it is he who holds the ultimate power of life and death over the warring factions of the Moslem world, and it is he who sends his greatest weapon into Egypt, to serve the Caliph. He is but a single man but he is an Assassin: the one they callthe Emir of the Knife. . .

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Scott Odenwas born in 1967 in Indiana, and raised in rural North Alabama where he still lives. His fascination with Egypt and the ancient world began at school when a teacher showed his class slides from the Tutankhamun Exhibition. He studied history and English at the University of Alabama before pursuing the usual variety of odd jobs - from delivering pizza to clerking at a video store. His previous novels were the acclaimedMen of BronzeandMemnon.

The mark of exceptional historical fiction is its creation of an alien world so convincing (and peopled by such fascinating characters) that the reader never wants to go back to the real one. Scott Oden delivers exactly that inThe Lion of Cairo, a tale of that reads like a cross between the 'Arabian Nights' and a Hollywood blockbuster.Men of BronzeandMemnonput Mr Oden squarely on the historical fiction map.The Lion of Cairoassures his place in the very front rank.
Steven Pressfield

Filled to the brim with assassins and concubines, caliphs and street thugs, the devout and the heretical. It's partly a swashbuckling historical, partly a tale of palace intrigue, partly a fast and furious espionage yarn. A terrific trip into Cairo's exotic past. Just pray the Emir of the Knife is on your side.
David Anthony Durham

Hardback original
Keyword Index
Caliphs - Fiction.|Cairo (Egypt) - History - Fiction.|Historical fiction.
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