Byrhtnoth was Ealdorman of Essex.
He was killed at the Battle of Maldon on 10th August 991.
He was aged around sixty when he died, defending his country from a Viking invasion.
He first appears in history in 956.
Where did he come from? Who were his parents?
The Byrhtnoth Chronicles is a Historical Fiction series about the early life of Byrhtnoth.

The Wulfstan Mysteries,
A new series carrying on from the end of Bright Helm, but following the adventures of Byrhtnoth’s friend, Wulfstan, Book One: Death in the Mint.

When Wulfstan swore revenge on his enemy, he expected to die. Now that man is dead.

Another man lies dead in an Essex wood.

Abbot Dunstan of Glastonbury is concerned. The dead man ran the mint. Is the king’s coinage in danger of corruption?

Dunstan sends Wulfstan to Maldon to investigate.

Can Wulfstan discover the truth? Is there a connection with his own lost past?

Having lost everything he held dear, can he learn to live again?

“Finally, Wulfstan – my favourite character in the Byrhtnoth Chronicles – has been given his own story. Read and enjoy!”
Ruth Downie, author of the Gaius Petreius Ruso Mysteries.

Great 5 Star Review from the Coffee Pot Book Club.

Book Four, Bright Helm, published 15 Oct 2020

Available in Paperback and Ebook

Separated by anger and unanswered questions, Byrhtnoth and Saewynn are brought together by a tragic death.

Re-united, they set out on an epic voyage to discover the final truth about his father.

The journey takes them far to the north, to Orkney, swathed in the mists of treachery, and to Dublin’s slave markets where Byrhtnoth faces a fateful decision.

How far will he go, to save those he cares for?

 Book Three, Bright Blade, published 12 Oct 2019

Available in Paperback and Ebook 

Byrhtnoth thinks only of killing the man who stole his sword and wounded his wife. But the blade of revenge can strike both ways.

Erik Bloodaxe has broken his oath and claimed the throne of York. In his anger, King Eadred sends his army to ravage Northumbria. Sent north with the ships, Byrhtnoth suffers storms at sea and fire on land.

After an encounter with an old enemy he is left broken, in mind and body.

Can Byrhtnoth survive until help arrives?

Will he ever fight again?

Book Two, Bright Axe published 11th April 2019

Available in Paperback and Ebook

AD 947: Byrhtnoth has received his father’s sword. But his hall is burnt and the sword stolen. Learning that his father still lives, he swears a solemn vow to find him.

Torn between his quest and duty to Lord Athelstan of East Anglia, friends are hurt when an old enemy unexpectedly reappears. Despised by his best friend for his failure, he is sent deep into Northumbria, to Bebbanburg.

Winter closes in and wolves prowl the hills. Who is the mysterious woman he encounters there? She offers him news of his father – and more.

Will Byrhtnoth remain with her, or return home to discover the fate of the friends he abandoned?

Or should he continue the quest for his father?


From a terrible fire in Essex to the cold and unforgiving terrain of Bebbanburg in Northumbria, Bright Axe: The Byrhtnoth Chronicles Book 2 by Christine Hancock is a gripping account of war, betrayal, loss and love.
Hancock has plucked her hero, Byrhtnoth, out of obscurity and breathed new life into a man in which very little is known about, other than the fact that he was a 10th-century Saxon Ealdorman of Essex and he died at The Battle of Maldon.

Part of Review of Bright Axe by Mary Ann Yarde, The Coffee Pot Book Club.
“A robust story that will appeal to fans of this later Anglo-Saxon period in England.”


The first book: Bright Sword was published 28th January 2018.

Available in Paperback and Ebook

England in the tenth century is close to peace, but the king is still in need of warriors.

At the age of seven, his mother dead, Byrhtnoth is sent to train with other boys, but suffers as he has no father’s name. He is shown a sword, his father’s sword, and he is told that it will be his when he proves himself a man.

When the girl he loves is captured by the Vikings he is sent to rescue her. A king tragically dies and Byrhtnoth blames himself.

Can he overcome his fears and discover the truth about his father? Will he live long enough to become a man and claim the sword?




Great Historical Story 
I read a lot of this era of historical genre and medieval fantasy and this is a wonderfully warm explicit story to rival any current author such as Bernard Cromwell and George R R Martin and my favourite Anne McCaffrey. I am captivated by the characters and will look forward to reading book 2.”
Amazon review 5*

“Christine Hancock opens a window to the tenth century; a time rich with intrigue, treachery, plots and skirmishes.”
Matthew Harffy

“A captivating story that will appeal to fans of historical fiction.”
M J Porter

“First in a series about a legendary warrior.
if you enjoy this book as much as I did, you will be looking out for the publication of Byrhtnoth’s further adventures.”
Reviewed by Richard Tearle on behalf of Discovering Diamonds blogspot


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