In a thrilling adventure of brotherhood, warfare, and treachery, Giles Kristian takes us into ninth-century England, a world of darkness, epic conflict, and an unforgiving God served by powerful priests. On ships shaped like dragons, bristling with oars and armor, Jarl Sigurd and his fierce Norsemen have come in search of riches. And riches they are promised, by an English ruler who sends Sigurd and his wolves to steal a holy manuscript from another kingdom.
Osric, an orphan boy, sees beyond the terror of these warriors, and somehow knows the heathens’ tongue. Renamed Raven, rechristened in blood, he will join them. They are his people. And they will be his fate.
©2009 Giles Kristian (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
I will listen to NO boring book. Old Fav's,Card, King , Hobb. New Fav's, Hill, Scalzi, Sawyer, Interested in Lansdale, Crouch, Konrath
A MAN DOES NOT DECIDE HE IS KING, THE MEN AROUND HIM DO.
I have always been interested in Vikings. They have always been portrayed as large men from the North who kill and pillage and rape as if it was there right to do so. My interest is in what made them think they had the right and what kind of race of man, loves killing other humans. I was reminded by this different take that history is written by the winners. Perhaps they were not the evil race of men the are suppose to be. Giles portrays them as traders, who are consistently under attack by sneaky British types. The British demand taxes and they hate anyone who worships any God other then their God. I understand how important religion was to early Christians, especially through my reading of Ivanhoe, but I found it hard to believe the extend in which they are blamed for the conflict with the Vikings.
This is Giles first novel and it reads like a first novel. The Vikings are made to look fairly tame. They do a lot of boosting and a lot is made of Eagling a man, but I thought the whole story moved slowly and other then trash talk, their was little substance to it. There is lots of talking then a battle, then talking, then battle, repeat. Even in the battles I did not feel the horror of killing. Nor was there much Viking history, nothing new was learned.
Harry Harrison's Hammer and The Cross does a lot better job at giving you the feel of the horrific acts of these men. Blood Eagling, making of a hemnar, quartering, tying a man's intestines to a stick and then beating him until he runs far enough to pull out his own intestines, and much more. Hemnar may be spelled wrong, but it is cutting off a man's arms and legs, but keeping him alive.
WORDS FALL FROM YOUR MOUTH LIKE DRIPPINGS FROM A GOAT'S A**.
Just a quote from the book, the narrator is pretty good, he just could not save the author from his own boring writing.
HIS HEAD IS FULL OF SPIDERS.
I love historical fiction, but usually stick with stories of medieval kings and queens rather than with the violent tales of the blood and gore encountered in the "shield wall"-- but Bernard Cornwell first hooked me with his "Saxon Chronicles" and I have now read (listened to) all of the books in that series -- hence tried this one and very much enjoyed it. Excellent narrator, absorbing story, never a dull moment…. I plan to go on and read the next two volumes in this series, which to my great relief I see are also available on Audible. It's nice to be so caught up in the listening experience and know that there is more to come !!!
I really love the story. The only issue I really had was the fact that this was a very young character, maybe 15 or 16 years old, with dialogue and interactions with other characters that are clearly from an adult. The narrator only use the voice of a young boy when the boy is talking to the Viking leader. Also, I struggle to understand how this band of vikings loses so few under such tremendous odds. If you can overlook these minor plot issues I believe you'll really enjoy this book.
I really enjoyed this book which gives an earnest account of how brutal life was at that time. The author was able to draw me in and keep me on the edge of my seat waiting for the next page.
Looking for something light and easy, but still fun and engaging? Do yourself a favour and keep looking!
Even if you're able to put aside the idea of a character that rapes a woman, knowing full-well what he is doing and that she does not want it, this book is still not a good listen (the main character does this after living his life in an English village and understands what rape is, then pities himself for doing it).
I am not comfortable with a rapist as a main character (regardless of how "bad" he felt about it), but even in spite of that part (which didn't do anything to further the character development or plot) this book is not great. It's meant to be a light-hearted romp, with some semi-historical facts peppered in, but it's just a big load of dribble. I'm sure the author did do his research, as evidenced by the parts that read like a Wikipedia entry, but the story development was stale and sadly lacking. The author relied mostly on the reputation of vikings to sell his story, without actually contributing to it in any realistic or meaningful way, and without adequately explaining/exploring the motivation for his characters (except, hey they're vikings, they do that kind of stuff and they believe in funny Gods).
A lot (all?) of the situations in the book were quite preposterous. Almost all resolutions were due to eus ex machina, to the point that it became quite predictable. I was surprised, however, that no characters were literally struck with lightening while about to deal a death blow to the 'hero', as that's the sort of story this is.
Even if you're bored and looking for something light and easy, I would not recommend this.
There are no listener reviews for this title yet.
Report Inappropriate Content
If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.