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ISBN 960-236-977-9     Pages 397


A forgotten manuscript buried for centuries in the crypt of a remote and isolated monastery in the island of Kythira brings to light the bloodstained ‘course’ of two notorious pirates: the Barbarossa brothers. 

The manuscript describes events that take the reader from a humble fishing village in Lesvos to the Sultan’s court in Constantinople and from the dark government buildings in Venice to the extravagant palaces in Algiers. Historical truth blends into myth amidst a barrage of captivating images, passions and revelations, events come to life and engulf the reader, taking them back to an era of ruthless but honorable adventurers, machiavellian monarchs and scheming representatives of the Church of Christ. Greeks and Turks, Christians and Muslims, Venetian and Genoan forces, Spanish and French dance together in this intoxicating ball of plundering, slaughter and slavery.

From a small and insignificant fishermen’s village in Lesvos to the Sultan’s courts in Constantinople and from the dark and humid dungeons of the Venetian castles to the luxurious Palaces in Algiers and northern Africa, this story of the most unrelenting pirates of the Mediterranean spins forcefully like a tornado and carries the reader away. It transports him to a historical era where he/she can breathlessly watch ruthless but brave- hearted fortune hunters, conspiring leaders and insidious representatives of the Church.

History interweaves with fiction forming an exuberant canvas of vivid pictures. Characters, as well as their passions and weaknesses are successfully revealed and unveiled. In this novel, the writer, through his thorough and meticulous research in historical facts, his ability to create a ‘myth’ and his explicitness achieves to entice, lure and fascinate his readers. He manages to transform a historical text into a striking historical novel. The whole drama of the struggle for survival in medieval southern Europe is enlivened once more in the pages of his novel, shedding light to the murk side of that era. Good people become evil, evil ones prove they have emotions and weaknesses. Pirates become admirals, leaders and people of high ranks and titles. At the same time kings and noblemen are transformed into base, vile and vicious schemers.

Arouz and Hayredin Barbarossa, Andrea Doria, Suleiman the Magnificent, the Francis of France, Isabella of Spain and a few others are some of the characters of the book which having been dispossessed of their historical ‘attributes’ are metamorphosed into active and vigorous personalities. With their rivalry, antagonism, hatred, passion for power and authority, corruption, assassinations, and criminal acts but also with their sagacity and military wisdom carve the material which makes this last work of the writer stand out as an exciting and irresistible novel.

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