Reviewed by Sarah Stuart for Readers' Favorite
In The Sacred Band: Sacred Band Series (Volume 8) by Janet Morris and Chris Morris, ethos and mythos combine; history remakes itself, dimensions are crossed, and realities diverge as the gods and Fates demand. The story opens over three hundred years before the birth of Christ with the rescue of forty-six fighters from the defeated Theban army at the Battle of Chaeronea; a plea for their lives from a foreign cavalry commander, Tempus the Black, which the Storm God grants. These twenty-three paired brothers and lovers join the Sacred Band of Stepsons and flee to fight another day on another battleground. They reach the legendary land of Lemuria, and then go on to the fantasy town of Sanctuary. Will they evade the Theban goddess, Harmony, and the angry Fates?
Janet Morris and Chris Morris have created a classic fantasy that explores love in war, honour, sacrifice, philosophy, religion, theomachy, and the maturation of the human spirit. Beautifully-written and character-driven, the focus of The Sacred Band is the fate of the Sacred Band of Stepsons as it absorbs the rescued Thebans and enters upon a chain of events leading to a battle with the entelechy of dream, in which the Battle of Chaeronea is re-fought with the many major differences that dreams permit. The Sacred Band is a mythical tale with all the breadth and scope that the word implies. It emulates, and to a degree draws on, the works of Plutarch, Plato, Heraclitus and Homer, but is much easier to follow and consequently is utterly captivating.