book cover of Runes
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(The first book in the Leitus series)
A novel by


"Captivating... " - Associated Press

One weapon to rule them all...

Accused falsely of a grotesque act of murder, Leitus, the romantic noble son of the Empire's greatest enemy finds himself beset from all sides by more foes than friends.

In his desperation, he feels himself alone in this world - nowhere to turn.

But soon he will learn that the world is not what he thought it once was.

Encountering Bita, a beautiful slave girl who is destined to bear the children of the Gods, he sees his life is changing forever.

But Bita's provincial village of ancient Britain has been unable to prepare her for her almighty purpose.

Soon, both Bita and Leitus must join forces to fight the forces of evil that surround them.

As they struggle in this new, mystic reality, they encounter things they had never dreamt of.

Myths become reality, as the pair navigate an enchanted druid world filled with painted warriors, mist-covered forests and powerful magic.

What was once mere fantasy has now taken the shape of deadly tyranny.

A myth, you might ask, is a myth, but why stretch it so out of shape? God's Children, Arthurian legends, fantastical abilities and the young taking on forces of tyranny.

Runes is a gripping action historical fantasy set across the Roman empire.

Praise for Richard Monaco's works:

"Captivating... " - Associated Press

"Epic scope... " - Los Angeles Sunday Times

"Monaco's dialogue and meditations are often salty and fresh ... a restless, strenuous rumination on civilization's death and resurrection... " - Kirkus Reviews

"Worth waiting for. Often bawdy and raw... " - Publishers Weekly

"Monaco recreates the taste, touch, smell and sound of the knightly world in reality, not romance ... he succeeds brilliantly... " - Library Journal

"Monaco presents dark, tormented tales ... not for the weak-hearted." - Fantasy Newsletter

"an instant classic." - Salisbury Times

"... unbelievably talented ... a literary miracle... " - Drogin Book Column

"... offers a worthy inclusion in the enduring and ever-expanding Arthurian literature." - King Features Syndicate

Richard Monaco wrote the best-selling Parsival novels, 1977-2012, two of which were Pulitzer finalists. In addition he wrote over a dozen other books, plays, and screenplays. Monaco studied musical composition at Columbia, edited a national student newspaper and a poetry magazine, and had a radio talk show based on his textbook The Logic of Poetry. In 1979 he co-founded a NYC literary agency and the online journal, Grand Central Review, in 2015.

Genre: Fantasy

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Used availability for Richard Monaco's Runes

Paperback Editions

October 1984 : USA Mass Market Paperback

Title: Runes
Author(s): Richard Monaco
ISBN: 0-441-73685-8 / 978-0-441-73685-0 (USA edition)
Publisher: Ace
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   

January 1984 : USA Mass Market Paperback

Title: Runes
Author(s): Richard Monaco
ISBN: 0-441-73684-X / 978-0-441-73684-3 (USA edition)
Publisher: Ace
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   

Kindle Editions

December 2016 : USA, Australia, Canada, UK Kindle edition

Title: Runes
Author(s): Richard Monaco
Publisher: Lume Books
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU