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Reviewed by Kimberlee J Benart for Readers' Favorite
No Road to Khartoum: From Dublin to the Sands of the Desert (Part I of The Michael McGuire Trilogy) is a sweeping epic military fiction by Nigel Seed. Set in Egypt and the Sudan from 1883 to 1898, it recounts major events of the Sudan Campaign, beginning with the massacre of an Egyptian force and the later fall of Khartoum to the Mahdi, and ending with the retaking of Khartoum years later. The story is told through the eyes of Irishman Michael McGuire, who is only seventeen when he enters the British Army rather than go to prison for stealing a loaf of bread. Sent to Egypt and the Sudan, he learns Arabic, becomes part of the Camel Corps, and works with Kitchener’s Bedouins to try to rescue General Gordon in Khartoum. But, that is only the beginning of his many daring and nearly deadly adventures. Seed also provides a chapter on the actual historical facts and characters.
If you’re a fan of historical fiction with a complex and well-paced plot that will keep you engaged from start to finish, No Road to Khartoum is for you. Michael McGuire is a perfect military protagonist. He quickly proves himself an intelligent, courageous, and capable soldier and is rapidly promoted for his ingenuity and valor. Michael remains in Egypt for both personal and professional reasons, starting a family in Cairo while he builds an intelligence and reconnaissance unit which continues to see dangerous action in Egypt and the Sudan. Seed’s narrative is flowing and descriptive. The characters are three-dimensional and believable. I didn’t want to put this one down and look forward to the next book in the trilogy.