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The Paradise War: Song of Albion, Book 1 | [Stephen R. Lawhead]

The Paradise War: Song of Albion, Book 1

In an ancient cairn in the wilds of Scotland, Oxford student Simon Rawnson vanishes, seemingly into thin air. Where has he gone? Unsettling signs, a mysterious Green Man, and a Celtic circle chalked on the sidewalk point his roommate, Lewis Gillies, to an impossible answer...and an incredible destiny on the other side of a doorway between worlds.
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Publisher's Summary

In an ancient cairn in the wilds of Scotland, Oxford student Simon Rawnson vanishes, seemingly into thin air. Where has he gone? Unsettling signs, a mysterious Green Man, and a Celtic circle chalked on the sidewalk point his roommate, Lewis Gillies, to an impossible answer...and an incredible destiny on the other side of a doorway between worlds.

There, where Celtic champions, magic, and treachery are woven together in the beautiful and brutal land called Albion, Lewis finds Simon. And there, schooled as a warrior, he is thrust to the front of a titanic struggle between light and darkness, a hideous, onrushing darkness that would devour not merely a kingdom but two worlds.

Don't miss the rest of the books in this exciting series: Book 2, The Silver Hand and Book 3, The Endless Knot.

©1991 Stephen R. Lawhead; (P)2002 Blackstone Audiobooks

What the Critics Say

"Stuart Langston maintains a steady pace throughout. He is particularly adept at handling dialogue, skillfully moving between characters at a lively pace." (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (312 )
5 star
 (131)
4 star
 (92)
3 star
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2 star
 (23)
1 star
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Overall
4.0 (139 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
 (7)
1 star
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Story
4.0 (138 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
 (8)
1 star
 (9)
Performance
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  •  
    Alcairha Brooklyn, NY 11-21-07
    Alcairha Brooklyn, NY 11-21-07 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    101
    ratings
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    201
    40
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    6
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    Overall
    "Can;t recommend this highly enough"

    Absolutely tremendous! About 2 Oxford scholars, one a spoiled rich kid, the other a poor, "weedy" American, who end up in a mythical Celtic world. The book starts off at a leisurely pace while the author creates a rich background, but suddenly the ground drops out from under the hero and plunges him into the darkest despair - from then on, hang on to your seat! The character transformations are utterly believable. Nobody suddenly discovers magical qualities, every change is hard-earned and entirely consistent. A great listen! The narrator does a wonderful job creating different voices for each of the characters and obviously really knows his accents. Highly recommended

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jimmy Willow Springs, MO, USA 03-18-05
    Jimmy Willow Springs, MO, USA 03-18-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    164
    ratings
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    81
    33
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    FOLLOWING
    1
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    Overall
    "Takes Awhile To Get Going"

    I rate this audiobook three stars because it literally took 7 hours of listening before the book finally got going and became interesting. Prior to that we have lecture after lecture that strains one's willingness to keep listening. Maybe it was the narrator's bland style, but there were points when I wanted to put this book away and stop listening. Fortunately, I didn't do that and when this book kicks in, it really shines. My hat goes off to the author for his obvious love and knowledge of Celtic lore and life; however, I wish he could have pulled it off with a little bit less of the lecturing. The character of Lewis Gillies was also annoying at times. For someone who's earning an advanced degree in Celtic studies, he seems to know less than anyone! As I said, once the story gets going it is definately worth the time and I will look forward to the next book -- only, it's a shame, and annoying, that Audible only offers books 1 and 3 of this series.

    10 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ken 06-20-12
    Ken 06-20-12 Member Since 2011

    I absolutely love my audible account, makes its from enjoying a book to loving the stories found in the books. Do forgive my errors in the reviews i do have dyslexia but i will share my love with everyone

    HELPFUL VOTES
    95
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    113
    75
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    FOLLOWING
    15
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    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Celtic knowledge at its finest"
    Would you listen to The Paradise War again? Why?

    I would i love learning about the Celtic people and about there mythology as they apply it to the world of today


    What did you like best about this story?

    the Mythology


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    i found him to be a little to monotone when reading, i would like it if he put more emotion into his reading (he put me to sleep once waiting for friends)


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    no, the mythology was great and the plot good but its offset by the monotone of his reading


    Any additional comments?

    My advice is its well worth it to push past his reading and enjoy the book for how it was written

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ellen 04-24-05
    Ellen 04-24-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    21
    ratings
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    7
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    1
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    Overall
    "Where is Book II, The Silver Hand"

    Great book but where's the sequel? I've written to Blackstone and to Audible but can't seem to get a response. Is anyone else interested in hearing Book II, The Silver Hand before Book III, The Endless Knot? Nothing worse than loving a book and not being able to get the sequel.

    7 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Easton, PA, USA 10-02-07
    John Easton, PA, USA 10-02-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    1
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    0
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    Overall
    "Excellent Series"

    I sort of disagree with everyone else thus far. I thought this was a fantastic three part story. Steven Lawhead definitly has a flair for the descriptive but I thought its detail added to the story. I don't know about everyone else but when I'm reading an audio book I definitly have "time" to kill so the over descriptiveness did not bother me and in the end I found myself relistening to all the books. I rate this 10/10 you'll love it!

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 02-21-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
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    11
    8
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    "The Paradise War: Song of Albion,"

    Again Stephan Lawhead has brought amazing adventure in a well written book about the "time between times" and different realities. Starting in London, and ending in the amazing world of Albion,the island of the blessed. Death, evil, battled by true hearts and even truer friends as they battle their way through trial and testing. Love the whole series.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barnabas' Daughter Atlanta, GA, USA 12-17-09
    Barnabas' Daughter Atlanta, GA, USA 12-17-09 Member Since 2009

    The name is for my wife, the photo is for the old man.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    28
    ratings
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    19
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    2
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    Overall
    "Good series, great first book"

    I didn't like this trilogy quite as much as Lawhead's Merlin trilogy.
    Generally, it seems that most of these series get progressively "darker" and less "imaginative" in feeling as the series progress. This series was no exception to me, so I enjoyed The Paradise War the most of the three. The interaction between the two worlds was very well done. The character development was extremely good, throughout, and indicated in another view. The changes in the protagonist as he is exposed to his environment and situations were solid and gratifying.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carol S. 02-12-08
    Carol S. 02-12-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
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    7
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    "Interesting concept for a book"

    I got the book because the concept sounded interesting. I had a hard time getting into the story because of the reader. Once I got past the reader's drab delivery, the book got my attention and kept it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Not My Real Name Amok 06-18-05
    Not My Real Name Amok 06-18-05 Member Since 2001

    Really REALLY!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
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    12
    4
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    0
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    "Exercising his vocabulary"

    I love all of Lawheads 'Arthur/Merlin' stories.
    This is a good story as well.
    What it needs is less elaboration upon the feelings and more
    story at the end.

    I thought that I was listening to a parody done by Monty Python
    and not a real story... One needs no more than 3 (at most)
    representations of the conditions of the situation. There are
    cases where the count of a dozen are exceeded...

    Additionally, the ending is weak... this leaves no answers to most
    of the real 'mysteries' and little desire to get a subsequent
    story in a series if that is the intent of the precipitous and
    meaningless end of this saga.

    I KNOW SRLawhead is a great writer. Let's see his real skills
    reflected again.

    5 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    staff-fam 09-30-13
    staff-fam 09-30-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    "Another awesome Lawhead story"

    I've been a huge fan of Lawhead since I was a teenager and enjoy revisiting his books every so often. This series is one of my favorite - along with the Pendragon Cycle. I can't say enough about this story and thought the narration was fine (although I see some people didn't like it) - the richness is in the story and I don't think the narration does any harm. HOWEVER - I did take a star off for performance because all throughout the story there is a background echo of the audio. I heard it on both the Android and iPad clients, so I'm sure it's not a glitch. Sometimes it's faint, sometimes it's distracting. I've listened to a lot of audio books and have never heard this. Don't let it cause you to pass up this book - it's worth putting up with the echo - but just a warning.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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