Pagan Warrior

Media Kit

Book Title: Pagan Warrior

Series: The Seventh Century

Author: MJ Porter

Publication Date: 25th May 2015 (new cover from January 2022)

Publisher: MJ Publishing

Page Length: 294

Genre: Historical fiction/Action and adventure

Twitter Handle: @coloursofunison @cathiedunn

Instagram Handle: @m_j_porterauthor @thecoffeepotbookclub

Hashtags: #PaganWarrior #TalesOfMercia #TheSeventhCentury #BlogTour #TheCoffeePotBookClub

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Book Title and Author Name:

Pagan Warrior

MJ Porter

Audiobook narrated by Matt Coles


From bestselling author, MJ Porter comes the tale of the mighty pagan king, Penda of Mercia.

Britain. AD632.

Penda, a warrior of immense renown, has much to prove if he is to rule the Mercian kingdom of his dead father and prevent the neighbouring king of Northumbria from claiming it.

Unexpectedly allying with the British kings, Penda races to battle the alliance of the Northumbrian king, unsure if his brother stands with him or against him as they seek battle glory for themselves, and the right to rule gained through bloody conquest.

There will be a victor and a bloody loser, and a king will rise from the ashes of the great and terrible battle of Hædfeld.

Guest Post:

Who was Edwin, king of Northumbria (616-632/3)

Pagan Warrior is the fictionalised telling of a famous battle between two main forces, that organised by Cadwallon of Gwynedd and including Penda of Mercia, and that of Edwin, the king of Northumbria. But who was King Edwin of Northumbria?

Edwin is an intriguing historical character. He was born into the royal line of Deira, but his kingship was curtailed by King Æthelfrith of Bernicia, who married his sister, Acha, and seems to have claimed both Bernicia, of which he was king, and Deira as his to rule, in what became known as a united Northumbria (those north of the River Humber).

Edwin seems to have spent these years in exile, perhaps chased from kingdom to kingdom by Æthelfrith, as he is recorded in Gwynedd, possibly, and then allying with Mercia and then the East Angles. He married the daughter of a king of Mercia, Ceonburh, with whom he had two sons, Osfrith and Eadfrith, and forged an alliance with one of Saxon England’s most powerful kings, Rædwald of the East Angles, who may, or may not, be the man buried at the famous Saxon site of Sutton Hoo. Edwin famously endured a number of attempts on his life.

After Æthelfrith’s death, at the battle of the River Idle, Edwin took control of Deira and Bernicia and indeed, in turn, drove his sister and her many children into exile with the Picts and men and women of Dal Riata, both in modern-day Scotland, where it’s said some found sanctuary on the holy island of Iona.

Once king he began the process of converting the Northumbrian Saxons to Christianity as part of his marriage union with a Kentish princess. This ‘new’ Christianity was introduced from the south via Kent, and Bishop Paulinus was dispatched with King Edwin’s new wife. Æthelburg, to convert the ‘pagan’ Northumbrians.

But, at the battle of Hædfeld, fought between Edwin and Cadwallon of Gwynedd, the two men, believed to have been foster brothers, faced off against one another, and in doing so, brought many of the kingdoms then found in Britain into the fight. One would be the victor, and one the defeated, and if they were truly foster brothers, this was a family argument that created one of the most famous battles of the seventh century.

Image of Edwin: DaveWebster14, CC BY 2.0 <;, via Wikimedia Commons

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Author Bio:

MJ Porter is the author of many historical novels set predominantly in Seventh to 
Eleventh-Century England, as well as three twentieth-century mysteries. Being raised in the shadow of a building that was believed to house the bones of long-dead Kings of Mercia, meant that the author’s writing destiny was set.

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3 thoughts on “Pagan Warrior

  1. Pingback: Pagan Warrior is on blog tour with The Coffee Pot Book Club #blogtour – check out the posts for day 8 – M J Porter

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