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Reviewed by Edith Wairimu for Readers' Favorite
Phoenix: By the Sword, Book 2 of The Phoenix Trilogy by Jackie Anders is a thrilling historical romance novel with fantasy elements. After making it back from the Battle of Teutoburg, Cassius, an eighteen-year-old Germanic princess now a slave to a Roman senator, is ordered to deliver a letter to a man in Aquileia. A man breaks into her room and steals her satchel which contains the letter and her treasured trinkets. She pursues the man and catches up with him. On impulse, she accepts to travel with him and to leave her degrading position with the senator. Banks is like no other man she has known. His kindness and loyalty endear him to Cassius. They travel together, encountering many dangerous twists in their journey which later leads to a surprising conclusion.
From the beginning, Phoenix: By the Sword by Jackie Anders includes thrilling scenes of war, skirmishes, and shocking episodes. The book opens with the frightening scenes of the Battle of Teutoburg. A frenzied sequence of activities follows. The rest of the book is also packed with many exciting turns. As one of the protagonists, Banks's character distinguishes him from the other men that Cassius encounters. He is brave, empathetic, and respectful toward women, an unusual trait at the time. Their romance blossoms naturally. Initially, they both struggle to trust each other with details of their pasts. Other main characters and events are later introduced, adding to the book’s scope. The time travel elements included are also fascinating. Phoenix: By the Sword is an expansive, genre-bending novel with many unexpected events.