Return of the Plumed SerpentBook - 2014
After routing the Maya at the battle of Potonchan, the conquistador Hernan Cortes turns his attention to the much bigger prize of the Aztecs and their golden city Tenochtitlan. But in order to win the Aztecs' gold Cortes and his small force of just five hundred men will have to defeat the psychotic emperor Moctezuma and the armies of hundreds of thousands he commands. Cortes expects the warlike Tlascalans, hereditary enemies of the Aztecs, will join him but instead finds himself locked in a life or death struggle with the Tlascalan battle king Shikotenka who sees that the Spaniards will not stop with the destruction of Aztec power but will go on to annihilate all the ancient cultures of Mexico unless the invaders can be driven back into the sea. Even as Cortes risks all in the bloody campaign against the Tlascalans, he plays a game of mental dominance with Moctezuma, aiming to dismantle the Aztec emperor's confidence and defeat him psychologically before ever having to face him on the battlefield. In this strategy he is aided by his lover Malinal, a beautiful Mayan princess who detests Moctezuma after narrowly escaping sacrifice at his hands. It is from Malinal that Cortes learns of the myth of Quetzalcoatl, 'The Plumed Serpent' and she shows him how to exploit the prophecy of the fabled god king's return to weaken Moctezuma's resolve and keep alive the useful suspicion that the conquistador might actually be Quetzalcoatl himself. Meanwhile Malinal's friend, the witch Tozi, who has remained behind in Tenochtitlan, wages a supernatural war or her own against Hummingbird, the terrifying demon the Aztecs worship as a god, and against the evil sorcerer Acopol who does his bidding.
Publisher: London : Coronet, ©2014
Branch Call Number: HANCOCK
Characteristics: 518 pages.
Alternative Title: Retunr of the plumed serpent