Aztec Blood is the colorful and exciting tale of a beggar boy who rises to claim a noble birthright—and helps found a proud new people: the mestizo, a people bearing the blood of two great races—indio and español .
"Never less than spellbinding, this golden tale . . . follows the exploits of a mestizo boy (half Aztec, half Spanish) in seventeenth-century New Spain (Mexico), struggling for survival against Spanish nobles in league with the Inquisition . . . a dashing, glittering tale, sending the redoubtable Cristo and irrepressible Mateo through the dingy streets of Veracruz, lean Aztec villages, grand Spanish haciendas, deadly silver mines and teeming Mexico City. Injustice has seldom been so keenly sketched, nor valor so compellingly portrayed as in this swashbuckling adventure. —Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Ay de mi! Why is Cristo in a dank prison being tortured? What’s all the mystery surrounding his birth? What’s this business about treasure? The questions are all answered in Aztec Blood, Gary Jennings’s latest historical novel set in Mexico . . . at the time of the Inquisition . . . This is a sprawling book, with lots of juicy historical tidbits . . . it’s a wonderful mishmash of far-ranging esoterica, with were-jaguars the merest beginning." —The Washington Post Sunday Book Reviews
"This lush, exotic page turner fairly crackles with intrigue, romance and adventure. Following the pattern he established in Aztec and Aztec Autumn, Jennings continues to retrace the remarkable history of the Aztec Empire. Vanquished by the Spanish conquistadors, the once proud Aztec people are enslaved and condemned to toil on the grand haciendas owned by their conquerors. The author has meticulously researched the torturous history of the colonization of New Spain, revivifying the all-forgotten era upon whose brutal foundation the modern nation of Mexico was forged." —Booklist
"The sights, smells, and sounds of the era come alive in what is a true Tom Jones-style picaresque. Cristo is a lepero, a scorned mestizo beggar who lives by his wits, conniving and scheming merely to stay alive . . . Ultimately he fulfills his destiny by founding and leading a proud new people. Readers will lose themselves in this long, absorbing novel. --Library Journal
"Highly entertaining . . . witty . . . charming . . . overflowing with interesting details about Spanish colonialism, heady Indian mysticism, and numerous puns and winking references to the picaresque novels of the period."
Aztec Rage is set in the era of blood and fire when valiant Aztec men and women rise to fight their brutal overlords--at the same time the courageous people of Spain defend their cities and homes from the armies of Napoleon: Don Juan de Zavala, a wealthy caballero, becomes a Prince of Rogues after a dark secret of his birth is revealed. His adventures and redemption are told during the transformation of the "blood-tainted" mestizo to a people whose prides and passions shake the world: the mejicanos.
“Gleason and Podrug continue the late Jennings's Aztec series with this fast-paced, absorbing fourth volume, featuring Spanish-born Don Juan de Zavala, who comes of age in colonial Mexico in 1808. Just as Don Juan expects to claim his inheritance, his dying uncle accuses him of illegitimate, half-Aztec origins, and Don Juan is then unjustly pegged as his uncle's murderer. Prudently hitting the road, Don Juan meets a charming, erudite rogue named Carlos, and together they head for Veracruz. When Carlos is murdered by a Mayan mob, Don Juan returns under Carlos's name to a Spain now erupting in revolt against Napoleon. He joins the resistance there before returning to Mexico. Back in the New World, where he's determined to take back his inheritance, he throws in his lot with rebels agitating to reclaim their independence from Spain. Don Juan has his consciousness raised about European racism towards the "indio" population (especially by curvaceous Aztec babe Marina), and the authors paint a vivid picture of the early stages of the bloody war of independence. Just as preoccupied with swashbuckling and womanizing as its predecessors, this latest Aztec novel is likely to be irresistible to fans of the series.” -- Publishers Weekly
“Jennings, this time with two coauthors, returns to the fascinating history of the Aztec empire and the colonization of New Spain in this latest entry in the best-selling cycle he began with Aztec (1982) followed by Aztec Autumn (1997) and Aztec Blood (2001). The focal character in this atmospheric yarn is swordsman Don Juan de Zavala; it is his swashbuckling adventures, and the threat of exposure of his true parentage, that lead him—and spellbound readers—from colonial Mexico, where the Aztec civilization lies in ruins, to the Spain of Catholic repression and Napoleonic ferment. What the novels in this series do so well, and this latest installment is a prime example, is to lend a resonant understanding of not only Aztec and colonial customs and even mind-sets but also how repressed peoples, whether by the act of conquest or the act of religious control, will indeed have their own day—how their resentment builds, in other words. A beautifully detailed novel for historical fiction fans.” —Brad Hooper [YA/M: Strong teen readers will learn from the vivid history. BH.] Booklist (American Library Association)
"Thrills twist through the pages like a tornado, sweeping you from glittering Mexico City to snake-and-croc-infested jungles, to lost Mayan civilizations to the torture chambers of the Inquisition, to beautiful Barcelona and the bloody carnage of Napoleon’s war in Spain, to the bloodiest and most spectacular of New Spain’s (colonial Mexico) revolutions." --Douglas Preston, New York Times bestselling author of Tyrannosaur Canyon
"AZTEC RAGE is a once-in-a-lifetime reading experience, crackling with excitement and grandeur of language, but most of all there are unforgettable characters that you will carry in your heart forever. There is swashbuckling adventure, exotic places and women so beautiful and decent you’d want to fight and even die for them, but beneath it all is the pride and passion of common people who rise to uncommon valor to defend their families, homes and honor against villains as wicked as sin." --David Hagberg, USA Today-bestselling author of Soldier of God, winner of the American Book Award and three-time winner of the American Mystery Award
"AZTEC RAGE is a major epic, a grand literary canvas of thrills and chills, fire and passion . . . Colonial Mexico, the land called New Spain by the Spanish, was a place of mystery and magic where the ancient rites of the Aztecs and Mayans clashed with the Europeans who mastered the land—but never conquered the people. Even if you think you know Mexico, you will never again look at Mexico the same way. You will look on the Mexican people with new eyes as well, and you will be changed. The final chapter will move you to tears—"I am mejicano!"—will ring in your ears forever." --Kathleen O’Neal-Gear and Michael Gear, award-winning, USA Today-bestselling authors of People of the Moon
"What a spell-binding read! This monumental novel shows us the violent turbulence of both the Old and New Worlds of the 19th century . . . take equal parts of Cervantes, di Lampedusa, Patrick O’Brian and Fodor, mix them up at a head-spinning pace, and you get the immensely satisfying tour de force AZTEC RAGE. Filled with memorable characters, fascinating situations and immersed in the bloody history of the 19th century, this is a continent-spanning novel you’ll never forget." --Walter J. Boyne, author of Roaring Thunder and one of the few writers ever to appear on both the fiction and nonfiction New York Times bestseller list
"Big, bold, bawdy, Aztec Rage is fiction in the grand tradition."
-- Stephen Coonts, New York Times bestselling author of The Assassin
Aztec Fire sweeps readers from the desert mountains of Old Mexico to the fabled ruins of ancient Tula; from the slave-labor galleons of "the Manila Run" to Southeast Asia's pirate dhows, opium smugglers, and tempestuous typhoons; from a sado-erotic Sultanate overrun with eunuchs, torturers, and bizarre sex slaves to a South Seas jungle island teeming with crocodiles, snakes, and blood-crazed cannibals. Returning to Mexico, Juan and his friends find their country in flames, struggling in a last climatic revolution against its hated Spanish oppressors.
"A story of sweeping grace and power, Aztec Fire draws you into the turbulent, violent, and luminous world of Mexico in the early nineteenth century, when that country threw off the Spanish yoke. Impeccably researched with magnificent characters and splendid settings, Aztec Fire is a story for the ages."
-- Douglas Preston, New York Times bestselling author of Blasphemy
"If you're looking for high adventure, here it is. Rip-snortin', slam-bang, action-filled entertainment that hits the bull's-eye. Once the hero, a young indio weapons-maker, begins his quest, there'll be no turning back...for him or for you." -- William Martin, New York Times bestselling author of The Lost Constitution
"I stayed up all night reading Aztec Fire, and I was sorry I'd read it so fast."
-- David Hagberg, USA Today bestselling author of Dance with the Dragon
"Aztec Fire is a tumultuous tale set in turbulent times, it begins and ends in Mexico, but in between it takes the reader on a far-ranging, E-ticket ride through early nineteenth-century history." -- Lucia St. Clair Robson, New York Times bestselling author of Ghost Warrior
Juan is a "mestizo," of mixed Spanish and Indio heritage, sure to be doomed to a short, violent life begging on the streets. But Juan has a special gift for handling horses and an ability to defend himself at a time when a man's best friends are his horse and his sword. Only El Mestizo, the half-caste son of the conqueror Cortés, knows that the blood of kings flows in the young beggar.
After killing a man for beating a horse, Juan becomes a highwayman and horse thief before disguising himself as a wealthy caballero. He is wined and dined by the richest and most powerful people in the colony—who don't realize that some of them had once stared down the barrel of Juan's pistola as he took their gold.
Fighting, conniving, and loving in a colorful era of flashing swords and brave hearts, Juan must use all the tricks he learned as a beggar and a bandit to unlock the secret of his own heritage.
The race is on to find an ancient codex, the final prophecy of the god-king, Quetzalcoatl . . .
Montezuma has built a vast empire, triumphing over war, drought, and death-cult priests. But his greatest threat is a conquistador whose brutal weapons and plagues sow death wherever he goes. Desperate to save his people, Montezuma sends Pacal, a young slave-scholar, on a perilous quest to find the final words of Quetzalcoatl.
Five hundred years later, America's leaders are staring into an apocalyptic abyss. Convinced that Quetzalcoatl's codex holds the key to humanity's survival, Rita Critchlow and Cooper James battle broiling desert canyons and drug-cartel warloads to track it down.
Can they crack the 2012 code and save their world? The countdown is on.
"The authors do an imaginative job of interweaving the dual narrative threads . . . . Expect demand for this timely thriller." -- Booklist
Exotic, scary . . . a fast fun read that starts with a bang and never stops." Larry Bond, New York Times Bestselling Author of Cold Choices
Readers learn a lot of the Mayan and Aztec culture of a millennium ago in this entertaining historical fiction . . . an enthralling adventure thriller."
-- The Mystery Gazette
Today's world leaders and those of a thousand years ago face the world's end.
The Mayan "End-Time Codex" predicts the end of the world in 2012. A young Aztec-Mayan slave tells the story of its creation: gifted in math and astronomy, Coyotl advises the god-king, Quetzalcoatl. Gathering artists, scientists, and architects, this ruler builds the great, golden city of Tula but soon faces war, disastrous drought, death-cult priests who rip the hearts out of thousands of people . . . and an epic catastrophe threatening all humanity.
Meanwhile, a thousand years later, scientists have rediscovered the End-Time Codex and learned that their own time mirrors Tula's golden age. Can they crack the 2012 code and save their world from Tula's deadly fate? The countdown begins.
"Jennings fans will savor the mix of ancient history and near-future apocalypse."