By Charles Randolph Bruce and Carolyn Hale Bruce
Reviewed by Frank R. Shaw, FSA Scot, Atlanta, GA email:
Splendid! Wonderful!! Electrifying!!!
Like the old saying, I believe good things come in threes! Book
Three of REBEL KING is a continuation of the life
and battles of Robert the Bruce. A lesser man would not have
persevered. I even think of this great man while engaged in light
moments of tug of war with my grandchildren, Ian and Stirling,
and I tell them, “Never, ever give up!” and they repeat back to
me, “Never, ever give up!” and, like Bruce, they don’t!
I have heard some in Scotland refer
to certain people who endure amazing hardships as “having the
heart of Bruce”. While visiting with John Shaw of Tordarroch,
Chief of Clan Shaw, on the Black Isle a few years ago, he used
that phrase to describe a man who had been down on his luck for
many years but kept on until he had overcome his personal demons.
When you read REBEL KING, Book Three, Bannok Burn,
you will know what he means. Robert the Bruce can be compared to
Job in the Old Testament regarding his many adversities.
The battle scene is a thriller. You
know the outcome, whether you are a student of Scotland’s history
or listened to others talk about him. However, once you begin to
read the book, you will read it eagerly and find yourself caught
up in the battle as if you were on horseback with de Brus. You
will experience, as I did, some of the best dialogue between the
undermanned heroes, as well as that between the hated villains.
In my opinion, REBEL KING,
Book Three is the best of the three volumes from this talented
couple. While the first two books are real page turners in their
own right, you are in for a great treat with this one. Over the
years, there has been much speculation that the books will be
made into a movie. I certainly hope so because it will be one I
put on my schedule, and since I do not normally go to movies,
that should tell you something!
Longer than the first two, this book
totals 528 pages. The three books now exceed a half million words
regarding the life of de Brus. July 1, 2006 is the date of
publication. You will be interested to know that if you order
from their website,
www.RebelKing.com, you will receive free shipping and may
request an autographed copy. Bookstores may order from Ingram and
Baker & Taylor (800-247-6553). You can also order from Amazon.com
or your local bookstore using ISBN 0-9721674-7-1 (paperback at
$19.95), and ISBN 0-9721674-6-2 (hardback for $29.95).