Haven't done a book review for ages. This book follows on from Conn's trilogy that was all about the life of Genghis Khan - which I really enjoyed. I've always had a bit of a fascination with the Khan story, how this nation that wasn't even a nation but a load of squabbling tribes was forged into the incredible military power that took on the Chin and won and then forged out West to Europe as well.
So the story picks up after Genghis is dead and there is a power struggle with the family left behind - Genghis had set up Ögedei Khan as his successor. He starts to build a city, contrary to the nomadic lifestyle under Genghis. Also under his reign the expansion of the Mongol empire reaches it's height reaching far into Europe and China.
If I am honest I found this slightly heavier going than the original series, I think to be honest I'm more wanting to get to the next stage in the saga that leads to Kublai Khan taking over which is another era I've interest in. However Ögedei Khan's short reign as I say did contain some incredible victories and expansion East and West. In fact his death led to the invading armies of Europe to turn back to return home to sort out the next Khan - another family feud, what a surprise. Now if he hadn't died then or if the decision had been not to return but for the army to push on where would they have stopped? Europe lay at their feet, they had defeated some of the best knight lead of the Russian, Polish etc. already and were scouting into Italy etc. Would they have just continued right through to the Atlantic coast? To England even. How different history may have been... as the book points out rarely has the death of one man so affected the course of history.