Blood Brothers: Courage and Treachery on the Shores of Tripoli; by E. Thomas Behr

MWSA Review
E. Thomas Behr’s Blood Brothers is an intriguing tale woven into the history of a young America’s first response to piracy.  In the very early 19th century, a new nation, the United States of America, has decided that it will not pay tribute to the Barbary pirates, but will instead send military forces to defend US merchant shipping in the area.  Though young as a nation, America brings her political and military resources to bear on the issue, determined to take her place on the world stage.
Within this story are two characters, one a capable but hot-headed naval officer, and the other a mysterious soldier of fortune.  Both are brave and intelligent, but there the similarities end, or do they?  Seems the two have more in common than they or anyone ever thought, and the truth will be revealed in the hottest fire on earth; combat in the dessert.
It’s obvious the author did some research in preparing this book.  It’s hard to create a truly unique story against a historical backdrop, but Behr succeeds, and the result is a thrilling ride full of bravery, soldierly camaraderie, and intense combat action.  Fans of historical combat fiction will truly enjoy this, especially if more into muskets than machine guns.  Well done and worth the effort!
Reviewed by Rob Ballister, MWSA Awards Director

Author's Synopsis:
In 1805, a ragtag American-led army of a handful of Greek and Italian mercenaries, their uncertain Arab allies, and seven US Marines, sets out across 500 miles of merciless desert.  Their mission:  to invade Tripoli, defeat an enemy ten times their number, put a pro-American puppet ruler on the throne, and establish our young nation as a political force in the Mediterranean. 

America’s first war in the Muslim world throws together two unlikely allies: Peter Kirkpatrick, the young, brashly confident captain of the USS Eagle, and the half-brother he never knew existed, Henry Doyle. A cynical soldier of fortune and a convert to Islam, Doyle agrees to help guide the American expedition against Tripoli–for his own reasons.

When Kirkpatrick joins the invading army, he is plunged into an unfamiliar, unforgiving world that will test his courage – and America’s character – to the breaking point. For Doyle the question becomes: do I help my brother−or let him die?

ISBN/ASIN: 1456527304
Book Format(s): Soft cover, Kindle, ePub/iBook
Genre(s): Historical Fiction
Review Genre: Fiction—Historical Fiction
Number of Pages: 387