Hastings, October 1066. The Normans have landed in Sussex, ready for battle. They have prepared for everything about the English - except their absence...
Their enemy, King Harold and his fyrd, are hundreds of miles away, fighting to expel the Viking host in the north. But they have heard that William has landed and rumour is that they are marching back, triumphant and dangerous - and spoiling for a second victory.
Back in Sussex, Gilbert, a young scout in William's army, is sent out in search of the enemy. He is dedicated and ambitious, and determined to be the first with news for his leader. Deep in the English countryside, Edwin, houndsman to King Harold, longs too for glory. He has missed the first battle against the Vikings, but he will not miss the second. He knows his king is about to make history, and he is going to be part of it.
And as the action sweeps up towards the hilltop close to Hastings where Harold will plant his standard - defying the Bastard of Normandy to come and get it - the ground is laid for battle.
This is the story of the greatest battle ever seen on British soil and of the men who fought it. This is the story of the Battle of Hastings.
Berwick Coates was educated at Kingston Grammar School and Christ`s College, Cambridge. Since then he has been, at various times, an Army officer, writer, artist, lecturer, careers adviser, games coach, and teacher of History, English, Latin, General Studies, and Swahili. He is the author of nine works of non-fiction, and lives in the West country where he works as a school archivist.