Events that took place on the Northwest Frontier of India in 1910 are resurrected for Joe Sandilands 12 years later.
On a welcome break from his duties, he is spending a fortnight with his old army friend James Lindsay, commander of the British army's fort at Gor Khatri on the Afghan border. There is an uneasy peace in operation, but into the delicate situation is injected an ill-assorted group of visitors.
After a skirmish that results in the death of a Pathan prince and the taking of hostages, Joe and James are given a week in which to find the killer. Otherwise the frontier is likely to erupt into war. Drawing on all his skills, Joe sets out to find the murderer.
©2003 Barbara Cleverly (P)2003 Soundings
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Kaz on 13-04-13


Not sure if it is the narrator, Joe or India but I can't get enough of this series. Beautifully drafted but a gentle enough listen whilst ironing, sewing or just relaxing. Certainly one of my favourites.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

2 out of 5 stars
By Claire Kendall-Price on 30-08-14

Tedious and long winded.....A big disappointment.

Would you try another book written by Barbara Cleverly or narrated by Terry Wale?

I loved the Last Kashmiri Rose by same author and narrator, but this was no where near the same league.

What was most disappointing about Barbara Cleverly’s story?

It was tedious, long winded, nothing much happened, and the section introducing the characters as they arrived at the Fort I had to listen to a number of times to distinguish who was who.

Which scene did you most enjoy?

The opening scene, which was clear and precise.

What character would you cut from The Damascened Blade?

Hard to say as they were not well drawn, and one felt no emotional involvement with any of them. Three were excessively annoying and I had no empathy for them or their plight.

Any additional comments?

The Last Kashmiri Rose (book 1) is so beautifully written that you could hear and smell India. The descriptions were thorough and exquisite. The characters were well drawn and given life through small nuances and characteristics. The detail in the book was outstanding and the writer's research was top class. This book however, lacks all those qualities and one of the few I have had to attempt to return to on a numer of occasions but still cannot finish. A disappointment.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Michael on 08-06-15

Adventure and murder mystery set during the British Raij

If you enjoy a classic who dune it, with just the right amount of old time serial adventure rolled in, set during the British Raij, then this is the book for you. To paraphrase the main character, " a jolly good show all around!"

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5 out of 5 stars
By L. K. on 25-01-15

Excellent Historical Whodunnit!

I had been looking for an author similar to Charles Todd. Many that I tried had a heavy romance aspect which is not my thing. Others were historically inaccurate, didn't ring true, or were boring. Barbara Cleverly is a spellbinding storyteller. Her grasp of time and place is assured and accurate. The Damascened Blade is highly recommended - a fabulous tale.

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