The Chronicle of the Ostmen

Grasp a new existence; plunge into seas risking the menace of natural power and piracy.

See the desolation that drives a man to immigrate, so that those abandoned can follow.

A boy opens to a changed perspective so that he can adapt to the chaos.

Feel the atmosphere of tradition, culture and personal aspiration that makes people act. Survival dictates that mix of cultures.

A lord discovers commanding by being the example that advances his people.

A leader considers his people so that their contribution is prized.

Break out of a tribal culture so that you can assimilate into society controlled by people of the book.

Priests ordained; Greco-Roman culture still influences modern society. photo

See how culture persuades the minds of men and their traditions serve as authority for their actions.

Confronting an alien culture in a foreign land

A man learns humility from a foreigner who knows more about life than he does.

Get an insight into the religious symbolism of the time and attitudes to different cultures. Why men domineer, lie, cheat and are unfaithful.

Masai women assist initiates painted with motifs of achievements to perform the circumambulation of the sacred lodge. Photo: Angela Fisher and Carol Beckwith

These mothers had just built this structure for the ceremony that takes a man from fierce warrior to elder of wisdom.

Traditions of your ancestors, the culture of your tribe, the expectations of your companions and finally your intuition makes your decisions.

Saga of a Warlord in a foreign realm.

A homeland invaded by warriors, fleeing through pirate controlled seas, to grasp at a free life.

Children captured, chained and penned destined for the slave market. A story blending Dark Age voyage of expansion inflicting tribal conflict and an embittered clash of cultural beliefs, into a land struggling with the anarchy of post Roman evacuation and the disparate ideals of Christian lay and papal practice.

Do you desire to see how the diversity of culture gave us the world we now inhabit?

Ian McKay Nunn tells the story

Real historic personalities alongside the deeply driven characters that march to claim a kingdom. 

Saxon kings battle the Danes with fearfully vivid heroes, who have etched themselves into the sagas of the Northmen.

Feel the atmosphere of tradition, culture and personal aspiration that drives people to act. Whether they lead as a warrior, a commander, an artisan, a merchant, a spiritual guide or they follow. Viking warlords and their oath men explore turbulent periods. Illustrate the symbolism used by lords, spirit guides to communicate to others.

History portrayed into an emotive passionate plight of migration and resistance.

A story indelibly portrayed with folk lore into legends of the sagas.

Nunn has made a reputation communicating complex concepts graphically, analyzing them to give concrete form to ideals.

This book serves you

Whether a graphic introduction to history or a thrilling motivation to reading.

Who benefited from the religious symbolism of the time.

Attitudes to foreign cultures confronted.

Maelstrom, first book in the Chronicle of the Ostmen series.

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Dragon’s Way, book two

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A kingdom faces foreign invasion to emerge as the country that defined a modern nation

Crisis forces us to look to leaders. One who shows us a vision for life and our place in a land. A person considerate to all people, able to provide justice and protection, a leader gives hope to the community. The Chronicle of the Ostmen: Book Two continues the clash of peoples, a conflict of cultures, a contest of religions, written by Mael MacConaill who sees the rituals and beliefs that nurtured the people to survive, grow and succeed.


“‘We will if the boy will play that tune we heard on our arrival.’ He nodded towards Mael.”

Mael is the young son of an Irish clan lord. Since he is not in line to be an heir, he is left to live a carefree life, playing with his friends. He has become recognized for his musical talent with the lute and his enchanting voice. The village adults hammer home the importance of paying strict attention to the new Christian leaders and never speaking about the old ways. Little does Mael know, though, that their lives are going to change forever.

Northmen are raiding the island, taking supplies and slaves in preparation for a massive attack. Mael is taken hostage by Imar the Boneless. He soon discovers life’s dark, violent reality during a time of religious and cultural upheaval. Mael has little time to process his trauma. The band of warriors holding him captive move from place to place. Life very quickly becomes about merely surviving. He learns many skills that will serve him well as he matures. His music and his value as a hostage keep him from certain death. What his future holds, only time and fate will tell.

Nunn crafts a lyrical story based on a strong foundation in history. He artfully weaves in critical myths and legends of the people to broaden the perspective of the narrative. These variations help illustrate how diverse and colorful the communities were who lived together during that era. His characters are vivid and multidimensional. The author demonstrates patience with developing them, which draws readers in. Full-scale battles and smaller sneak attacks pack the book with exciting action. The author introduces diverse military tactics used by the different nations. Leaving the audience at a critical point in the story, Nunn sets the table for the second book. Readers will be anxiously awaiting its arrival. Reviewed by Gretchen Hansen – US Review of Books

More compelling are the book’s religious details, as of those around Norse mythology, with its ideas about the world of the dead. Two straightforward black-and-white maps with clear labels help when it comes to tracking the book’s place names, and details about the ancient kingdoms’ economic activities and weapons help to bring the settings to life. And the book’s language is also formal and archaic, further vivifying its sense of the past; terms are explained in context where necessary.   Edith Wairimu – Forword Clarion Review

What Readers Say

Maelstrom is an apt title for this book which vividly captures the violent, troubled and fabled Dark Ages through story-telling and illustrations that is rich in detail. Although a work of fiction, it is clear that much careful and thorough research has gone into it.  – Stanley Yeo

What a fascinating insight into life in the British Kingdoms in the 9th Century during which the country side was invaded by Viking warlords and their armies. Nunn manages to immerse us in the lifestyle, strategies and challenges of the opposing forces. The development of the various characters, the outline of the logistics involved moving men equipment and the description of the gruesome battles gives the reader a vivid account of the times. Throughout my reading I couldn’t help but think that we haven’t learnt much about living and working in harmony without the brutality of war, religious tolerance and greed. I look forward to Book Two.   – Laurie Jackson.

This historical novel for teens is notably well researched and an engaging read. Outstanding illustrations by the author are strategically placed throughout the body of the writing, providing context to the mind’s eye of the reader. The use of terms in the original languages (Gaelic, Saxon and Old Norse/Frisian) lends an air of authenticity to the narrative. Set during the Viking and Anglo-Saxon struggle for the Kingdom of England, Book 1 of the chronicle (Maelstrom) is highly suited to components of Key Stage 2 of the History programmes of study for the National curriculum in England as it deals specifically with the Viking/Danish raids and the invasion resistance between 869 and 871. Featured are the Viking raids of Ard Mhacha (County Armagh) in Northern Ireland, the Dane invasions of East Anglia and Wessex, the Battles of Aescedun (Ashdown) and Merton, the wounding (and subsequent death) of King Aethelred and the resulting rise of Prince Alfred to become King Alfred the Great. Despite its label as an “historical novel for teens”, it is an informative and engrossing work for readers of all ages. – Dr. W.E. Miles

Ian McKay Nunn’s entry into the world of children’s literature is noteworthy. 

History and adventure, morality and suspense, realism and imagination, wonder and intrigue blend to create a superb experience for young readers.  – Narina Donnelly

Whilst reading your novel, I was able to put myself into the times of the ninth century – whereby the monks, the bishops, warriors, warlords and kings ruled; your quality of life was dependent upon which situation you found yourself in, not forgetting one could be kidnapped – as was common practice in these times. Harsh times indeed. I was swept along with Mael on this journey. The artwork was detailed and certainly complemented the story; however, the diagram of the land being invaded, I would have liked to have seen more explanation/detail.  – Bromwyn Evans

The Chronicle of the Ostmen: Book One: Maelstrom
by Ian McKay Nunn
XlibrisAU ISBN: 1664103481


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