Heaven's Favorite - Book One
Ascent: The Rise of Chinggis Khan
Author: Tom Shanley
File Size: 800 KB
Published Date: October 2008
"If he sends me into fire or into the ocean, I will go. I'll go for him." So said his troops about Chinggis Khan, a man who rose from exile and slavery to conquer the world. This is his story.
In the same spirit as Shogun, James Clavell's epic historical novel of feudal Japan, Heaven's Favorite tells the tale of Temujin, the Mongol outcast who ultimately swept all before him to become Chinggis Khan (mistakenly referred to as Genghis Khan by the Persians), the founder of the largest empire in the history of the world, one almost six times larger than the Roman Empire.
Book One, Ascent: The Rise of Chinggis Khan, relates the story of his rise to power and the foundation of the Mongol empire. The year is 1167 A.D. and eastern Asia is dominated by three powerful empires. The Jurchen, invaders from the wind-swept plains of Manchuria, have controlled northern China for more than a century, while the Chinese Sung dynasty reigns in southern China. To the west, the Tibetan empire of Xi Xia has ruled the area south of the Gobi and west of the Yellow River for over a hundred years. The Mongolian nation does not yet exist and a fractious collection of Mongol tribes, their divisions constantly exacerbated by the manipulative Jurchens, occupies a small area southwest of Lake Baikal. Born the son of a Mongol tribal chieftain and betrayed by self-serving relatives, Temujin finds himself banished into a life of exile and poverty at the age of ten. Foreswearing the traditional ties of blood and nobility, his loyalty and trustworthiness act as a lodestone for those disaffected with the current state of affairs. Borte, his childhood love, becomes his wife as well as his closest advisor as he assembles about himself a small band of men, many from undistinguished backgrounds, who, drawn to this charismatic young man, will remain with him for the rest of his life and go on to become the greatest generals the world has ever seen.
The product of three years of exhaustive research, Heaven's Favorite paints a vivid portrait of the Asia of eight hundred years ago in which Temujin's story unfolds. The sequel, Dominion: Dawn of the Mongol Empire, completes this epic tale.
In pursuit of the true story behind this saga, the author traveled over 4500 kilometers throughout Mongolia in the company of Mongol scholars from Chinggis Khan University and visited China a number of times.
A companion website can be found at www.heavensfavorite.com.