Daniel, the protagonist of The Bronze Bow, is living on a mountain in a camp with some bandits as the book opens. We know he hates the Romans and believes that Rosh, the head of the bandits, is the savior who will deliver the Jews from Roman rule. Later, in a flashback, we find out how Daniel came to live on the mountain and why he hates the Romans; both stem from the same events. Five years previous to the action of the book, Daniel's father was crucified by the Romans. Daniel's father was trying to rescue Daniel's uncle, who had been arrested by Romans for not paying taxes. As the uncle is being taken to the quarries by Roman troops, Daniel's father and some friends attempt a rescue, but it fails, and all those involved in the rebellion are crucified. Daniel's mother becomes ill from grief and dies shortly after. Now an orphan, Daniel is cared for only by his grandmother, who, for financial reasons, sells him as a slave for ten years to the village blacksmith. After serving only three years of his term, Daniel cannot stand it any longer--his owner is unkind and Daniel's hatred for Romans for destroying his family is consuming him. He runs away from his master and joins Rosh's band on the mountain, hoping to be part of a movement that will ultimately overcome the Romans so the Jews can at last be free.