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Patrida
A Novel of the Pankration
Peter Katsionis

Ancient Greece...a time of heroes

The city-states of Greece find themselves on the cusp of a forced unity as Philip, Alexander's father and the Macedonian king, sets out to create a single Hellenic nation. Against this background is told the story of Dioxippus, a fighter in the deadliest bare hand fighting of all time, the pankration, who will become so famous that his name lives on today.

The novel begins with the teenager, Dioxippus, trying hard to shed the shackles of slavery. He has been promised freedom in return for fighting in the pankration and his trainer and mentor, Piros, a freeborn man of color, is eager to aid his young charge.

Political events, horrid pasts and family dysfunction all come together to create a tumultuous and very dangerous Greece. Amidst this chaos rises Dioxippus.  Paralleling this emergence is Alexander, the son of Philip and soon to be conqueror of

PRAISES FOR PATRIDA

“I just finished reading Peter Katsionis' well researched and convincing first novel, Patrida.  Although I admit that I am not much of a historian and don't possess a great deal of knowledge of the martial arts, I was fascinated with this book and found it difficult to put down.  The story is a competent and credible depiction of Alexander's Greece, and paints clear vivid portraits and brings to the fore the characters of the main protagonists. Peter Katsionis does this with majestic power, and his dialogue seems to catch each player perfectly.  This is a historical novel on the grand scale, teeming with colour, life, court intrigue, treachery and romance, interwoven with consummate skill into a colourful story.  I look forward to his next novel with much anticipation.”

- Michael Yannacopoulos

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“Finally a chance to comment on your wonderful novel Patrida! I must admit that my first impression upon picking up your book was one of slight trepidation as I was anticipating being overwhelmed by a plethora of historical details - how wrong I was!! Once I started reading I couldn't put it down!  You've crafted a book with just the right mix of history, characterization, violence and sex to keep any reader enthralled! I found the progression and development of the Pankration methods as described throughout the novel fascinating. The characters were accessible, believable, interesting and - above all - human! Within the first few pages I was engrossed and fell in with the flow of the story. You should be very proud of what you've achieved with your book and I congratulate you!”

- Bruce Stephenson

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“A true achievement in historical fiction as it is a novel that tells history, without the fluff of excess fiction, indeed, all the fiction was inconsequential historically. Katsionis' strength in teaching us the history of Ancient Greece, while telling us the story of Dioxuppus, is a true achievement. One's senses, as the book is read, are sharpened. Macedonia is slowly revealed in the reader's mind to the point where the reader feels they have walked the streets of Pella and witnessed the murder of the Macedonian king Philip. The architectural triumphs of Athens are the background as the reader sits as a member of the Athenians’ democracy and listens to the treacherous speeches of the Athenian orator Demosthenes'. Dioxuppus' fighting in the great Pankration are described to the point one's heart races as each blow is received and thrown. The introduction of a young Hellene who would change humanity forever is carefully crafted as Alexander is about to embark on his conquests and mark the beginning of the Hellenization period. A must read for any student of history and any student of the martial arts.”

- George Kanavos



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