One man. Two armies. The fate of the ancient world in the balance. If history is the biography of extraordinary men, the life of Alcibiades (451 - 404 B.C.) comprises an indispensable chapter in the chronicle of the Western world. Kinsman of Pericles, protégé of Socrates, Alcibiades was acknowledged the most brilliant and charismatic personality of his day. Plutarch, Plato, and Thucydides have all immortalized him. As the pride of Achilles drove the course of the Trojan War, so Alcibiades' will and ambition set their stamp upon the Peloponnesian War - the 27-year civil conflagration between the Athenian empires, Sparta, and the Peloponnesian League. As a commander on land and sea, Alcibiades was never defeated. The destinies of Athens and her favored son were inextricably intertwined. Allied, they swept from victory to victory. Apart, he guided her foes to glory. Of the spell Alcibiades cast over his contemporaries, Aristophanes wrote that Athens "loves, and hates, and cannot do without him." To the end, their renown and ruin were indissoluble. Recounted by Alcibiades' captain of marines in a mesmerizing death-row confession, Tides of War is historical fiction at its finest.More
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