526 BC and the empire of the Pharaohs is dying, crumbling under the weight of its own antiquity. Corruption and decay cripple its cities, infects its leaders and cripples its armies, while across the great expanse of Sinai, like jackals drawn to carrion, the forces of the omnipotent king of Persia watch and wait... ut all is not quite lost. For leading the fiight to preserve the soul of Egypt is the Phoneician warrior, Hasdrubal Barca, the pharaoh's deadliest killer - possessor of a rage few men can fathom and fewer can withstand. But the defection of one of Egypt's most celebrated generals, the Greek mercenary Phanes, to the Persians triggers a savage war that will test Barca's military skills and his humanity to the limit. But Barca is changing - a girl who was once a slave but with a gift for healing - tends to his wounds, and as she does so, eases his tortured soul and teaches him how to be truly human again. rom the political wastelands of Palestine and the searing deserts east of the Nile to the streets of the ancient city of Memphis, Barca and Phanes play a desperate and brutal game of cat-and-mouse that culminates in the bloodiest battle of Egypt's history. In the dusty
Scott Oden was born in Columbus, Indiana, in 1967. The youngest of five, he was raised in rural North Alabama, near Huntsville, where he still resides. Scott's fascination with Egypt and the ancient world began in 1976, when his third-grade teacher showed the class slides from the travelling Tutankhamun exhibit. He studied history and English at Calhoun College and the University of Alabama before pursuing the usual variety of odd jobs - from delivering pizza to working in the bindery of a printing company to clerking at a video store. Men of Bronze is his first novel.