The Princes of Ireland (Pdf Kindle ePUB) by Edward Rutherfurd

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The Princes of Ireland

Nterlocking stories of a memorable cast of characters–druids and chieftains monks and smugglers noblewomen and farmwives laborers and orphans rebels and cowards–Rutherfurd captures the essence of a place and its people in a thrilling story steeped in the tragedy and glory that are Irela. After posting a poll about whether I should finish the book I thought about the pros and ons of each side TThe advice I got was very similar to what I was thinking The first half of it had interested and engaged me maybe I would get interested again I don t like to spend 15 on a book and then not finish it At the same time though I d struggled through 100 pages and was hopelessly bored I didn t think I d want to pick up the book again not later not no how Since I did read almost all of the book I thought I would write about it anyway Edwsard Rutherfurd s been called this age s James Michener That s not necessarily a good thing as Michener s books can drag on and be excessively wordy Another problem is when you want to cover centuries in a book you lose a lot of the characterizationEarly on I found Rutherford s characters interesting and engaging I think he spent time fleshing them out and it probably would have been better if his Dublin Saga had been split into 2 or 3 books to give eual time to everyone The story starts in mythic Ireland covering a tale I d become somewhat familiar with Deirdre escaping with the nephew of the king and incurring the king s wrath the great cattle raid of C Chulainn Rutherford moved smoothly from mythology to the arrival of St Patrick and Catholicism with many characters carrying over from one age to the next The sections about the Vikings and Brian Boru were also fascinating although by then new characters were introduced I began to get bored during the Strongbow section and struggled at the end I struggled for 100 pages and then tried skpping around It didn t work By this time the characters weren t so rich or interesting any They just seemed like incarnations of people already introduced I lost interest did the poll put the book down and moved on to something else I m glad I did

REVIEW The Princes of Ireland

Herfurd portrays the major events in Irish history the tribal culture of pagan Ireland; the mission of Saint Patrick; the coming of the Vikings; the making of treasures like the Book of Kells; and the tricks of Henry II which gave England its first foothold in medieval Ireland Through the i. Long ago Long before Saint Patrick came Before the coming of the Celtic tribes Before the Gaelic language was spoken At the time of Irish gods who have not even left their names So little can be said with certainly yet facts can be established In and upon the earth evidence of their presence remains And as people have done since tales were told we may imagine In those ancient times on a certain winter s morning a small event occurred This we know It must have happened many times year after year we may suppose century after century Dawn The midwinter sky was already a clear pale azure Very soon the sun would arise from the sea Already seen from the island s eastern coast there was a golden shimmering along the horizon It was the winter solstice the shortest day of the year If in that ancient time on the island the year was designated by a date the system of designation is not known Eleven hundred years of the early days of Ireland her history are covered in these page which I began with some trepidation knowing how many pages this contains I was also glad that I was reading this on my kindle since the sheer weight of 800 pages would have cut down my reading time The Princes of Ireland is a weighty tome heavy in weight and also in covering significant and not always pleasant years in Ireland s early years This was my first of Mr Rutherfurd s novels Beginning in AD 430 with Dierdre who is the daughter of Fergus the Chieftain great granddaughter of Fergus the Warrior is betrothed to the elderly High King of Ireland who is already married and whose wife threatens her life if she goes through with the marriage Dierdre is also secretly in love with Connall a young man who aspires to be a Druid priest despite his feelings for Dierdre But this doesn t stay in AD 430 for long it eventually brought me up through the later 1500s and while there are love stories this is largely a love story of Ireland and its people the beginnings of the stories passed on down through the years some recorded during those times perhaps some passed on through generations This shows the changing of the country the names of the places changing along with the times from Dubh Linn Doov Lin to Dyflin DIF lin to Dublin for example the changing of the ancient ways the Druids religions changing along with the times especially after the arrival of PatrickWhere this really shone for me was in the lovely descriptive writing Rutherfurd chose throughout perhaps from the first pages when describing the winter solstice at Newgrange a truly magical site on this lovely island in the prologue I was smitten from there on Who built these monuments above the uiet swan glided waters of the river We cannot be sure And for what had they constructed them As resting places for their princes that is known But what princes lay within and whether their spirits were benign of threatening can only be guessed There they lay however ancient ancestors of the island s people spirits in waiting As well as tombs however these great mounds were also sanctuaries which at certain times were to receive the divine and mysterious forces of the universe which brought cosmic life to the land And it was for this reason during the night which had just ended that the door to the sanctuary had been opened For in the centre of the flashing uartz fa ade there was a narrow entrance flanked by monumental stones behind which a thin somewhat uneven but straight passageway lined with standing stones led into the heart of the great mound ending in a trefoil inner chamber Within the passage and chamber as outside many of the stones were inscribed with patterns including the strange set of three swirling spirals And the narrow passage was oriented so that precisely on the dawn of the winter solstice the face of the rising sun as it broke over the horizon would penetrate directly through the top of the doorway and send its warm rays along the dark passage into the centre Up in the sky now the sunbeams flashed over the bay over the island s coastline across the winter forests and little clearings which as the sunbeams passed were suddenly bathed in the gleam of the sun s face as it emerged from the watery horizon Over the river valley the sunbeams flew towards the mound whose flashing uartz picking up a reflected light from the green landscape all around seemed itself to be on fire shining like an emerald sun Was there something cold and fearful in that greenish glare as the sun s rays burst through the portals into the dark passage of the mound Perhaps But now a wonderful thing occurred For such was the cunning construction of the passage that as the sun gradually rose the sun s beams as though abandoning their wonted speed entirely slowly and softly stole along the passage no faster than a creeping child foot by foot bringing a gentle glow to the stones as they went until they reached the triple chamber of the heart And there gathering speed once they flashed off the stones dancing this way and that bringing light and warmth and life to the midwinter tomb Many thanks to Jaline whose lovely review prompted my reading this Jaline s review

SUMMARY × PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook ☆ Edward Rutherfurd

Brilliantly weaving impeccable historical research with stirring storytelling Edward Rutherfurd explores our shared Celtic roots in a magnificent epic of Ireland spanning eleven centuries While vividly conveying the passions and struggles that shaped particularly the character of Dublin Rut. From Edward Rutherfurd s website You have said in interviews in the past that you refuse to cheat on history What do you mean by thatA My fictional characters are free to follow their personal destinies but I never alter the historical record just to suit my convenience or my prejudices Novelists and movie makers are sometimes tempted to do that and maybe they believe it doesn t matter I think it does matter WhyA Because so much bad feeling and so much political propaganda is based upon the falsification of history An extreme example would be the medieval blood myth told against the Jews that they kidnapped and sacrificed Christian children Absurd but widely believed for a long time A small example would be the movie The Patriot The bad guy English officer burns an American congregation alive in their church This was pure fabrication A deliberate lie No such thing happened Fortunately many critics and journalists pointed out the error If they hadn t done so millions of people would have believed it and no doubt many people still do It seems to me that those of us in the business of storytelling in books plays or movies have an ethical obligation not to mislead our audiences over the historical record especially when subjects may be emotive and affect our attitudes to others The bigger the audience the greater our responsibility and I don t think we can evade that responsibility whether we like it or notThis novel is one of several historical novels that Edward Rutherfurd has written beginning with Sarum 1987 I opened this review with an excerpt from an interview posted on Mr Rutherfurd s website because I too believe that there is an ethical responsibility for those writing in the genre in any genre really to utilize documented history as it has been researched for decades or centuries in some cases and that any deviations be given full disclosure As always with Edward Rutherfurd s novels this characteristic remains one of the main reasons I have loved his books from my first read If there is even the smallest shift in dates or historical incidents written to further the plotline he discloses it fully in an Afterword These discrepancies or embellishments have always been minor and minimal in Mr Rutherfurd s novels and this story taking place from AD 430 through to the later 1500 s is no exception This book is also part one of two books focused largely on Dublin and I will be reading part two next Dubh Linn with the approx pronunciation doov lin was the name given to it by the ancients when it was a tiny settlement near the ford across the river The ancient Fergus clan were charged with the upkeep of the crossing and to offer refreshment and shelter to those who broke their journey there Dubh Linn itself translated into blackpool as there was a large area of black water where the current swept around a bendThe goddess Eriu was one of the most revered of the gods and goddesses worshipped at the time and most likely eventually gave her name to the Island The Celts who lived there called themselves the people of Eriu The Tuatha De Danaan had mostly already left to live under the hills but Brehon Law was gradually being established and the Druids were still a strong influence on the many Kings of the area including the High King himselfI was smitten with this novel from the very beginning In time we traveled through the sojourn of the simple English Priest Patrick who had been a slave in Ireland at one time and returned to bring word of a gentler kinder God than the harsh and demanding gods of the time Celtic nature and custom were able to blend their beliefs with Saint Patrick s teachings and even many Druids were converted and began to set up their little monasteries as monksMeeting the various families whose descendants would populate this novel throughout its travels through time was fascinating The history of the names and how they evolved in some cases there were even practical and crucial reasons for the names changing was intriguing As various conuerors came to the Western isle I was mesmerized by how each conuering culture became absorbed into the culture already there While some of the conuering people s traditions were also embraced by the Irish the people of Ireland themselves influenced their conuerors beyond all recognition of their own rootsThe Romans brought changes briefly although it was the coming of the Vikings largely Norwegians and Danish with some of the other Scandinavian countries also represented that had the largest and most long term influence Aside from the English that isThis could have been an idyllic and completely peaceful place to live forever had it not been for the in fighting between the Irish Kings and their clans The years between 999 and 1013 were the time of Brian Boru Some of the Irish believed that his mission was to unite all of Ireland under one leader and saw this as a good thing Others particularly the other Kings and their clans were determined to use this time to not only hold on to what they had but to expand it into weaker Kings areas if possible So the problems came down to three things that are still problems to this day and not by any means only in Ireland Money politics and powerMaybe because Ireland is such a small and concentrated area the downfalls and the mistakes are easily identified In other words it is easier to diagnose a problem with a tree by looking at one leaf through a microscope than by trying to see the whole tree through a magnifying glassUnfortunately after Brian Boru s death the Kings and the clans continued to fight among themselves over the next century leaving the field wide open for an English takeover via Strongbow Until then 1167 English Kings were not much interested in that little Island over there When some of the Irish Kings and their clans began to appeal to England for help in vanuishing their traditional enemies it drew attention to the fact that here was an entire little world sitting there waiting to be plunderedIt was done easily and simply To many of the seaports in Ireland it was no different than past dealings with other traders from other countries And indeed many of the English who went over to conuer the Island became part of the Irish culture through their offspring It appears simple enough in this book as we cover over 1000 years of Irish history but it is in reading the stories of representative peoples of the time that we can fully appreciate the tragedies triumphs and the joys and sorrows that all people of the time experiencedThere is so much to this novel but it would take a novella of its own to fully review this amazing book I am happy that some of the key families will also be picking up the story in the second volume And I will also happily recommend this book to everyone who might be interested in these family s stories against the backdrop of historical magical Ireland Their stories are truly amazing and beautifully written with never a dull moment to be found

About the Author: Edward Rutherfurd

Francis Edward Wintle best known under his pen name Edward Rutherfurd was born in the cathedral city of Salisbury Educated locally and at the universities of Cambridge and Stanford California he worked in political research bookselling and publishing After numerous attempts to write books and plays he finally abandoned his career in the book trade in 1983 and returned to his childhood h

10 thoughts on “The Princes of Ireland

  1. says:

    From Edward Rutherfurd’s website You have said in interviews in the past that you refuse to cheat on history What do you mean by that?A My fictional characters are free to follow their personal destinies; but I never alter the historical record just to suit my convenience or my prejudices Novelists and movie makers are sometimes tempted to do that and maybe they believe it doesn't matter I think it does matter Why?A Because so

  2. says:

    Ok so I have to preface this review by admiting that I did my studies in Irish history so I'm bound to be a bit biased Having said that reading this book was like reviewing years worth of notes but compressed in an extremely enjoyable one thousand pages ok maybe compressed isn't the right wordReaching back to Celtic times Rutherfo

  3. says:

    Edward Rutherford has proved with such novels as Russka Sarum London and The Forest that he is a great historical novelist in the mould of James MichenerIn this wseeping saga of Ireland we are taken from the eloping and flight of the striking Deirdre and her lover Conall in 430 to the destruction of Ireland's ancient monastic heirlooms during the Reformation in 1537Rutherford traces the fortunes and interactions of several Irish families

  4. says:

    ”Long ago Long before Saint Patrick came Before the coming of the Celtic tribes Before the Gaelic language was spoken At the time of Irish gods who have not even left their names“So little can be said with certainly; yet facts can be est

  5. says:

    Historical novels can be simply human dramas set in historical times or they can be human dramas woven into historical events to bring those events to life We can learn a great deal from the latter and I feel like I did with Edward Rutherfurd’s The Princes of Ireland As an American with 100 percent Irish ancestry McLaughlin on m

  6. says:

    5 STARSThis was a wonderful fictional representation of early Irish history It begins in early pre Christian Celtic Ireland during the time of the fierce High Kings of Tara with their Druid gods to the mid 1500's and the time of Henry the VIII It has been described as A magnificent epic about love and war family life and political

  7. says:

    Let me just start off with saying that you need to be awake and alert when reading this book There are many times that the story is full of action and plot thus making it very engaging But there are just as eual an amount of times when it dives into ancient politics and slows to a crawl where you begin to struggle to keep your eyes open The book is still very enjoyable thoughIt does get confusing because while

  8. says:

    After posting a poll about whether I should finish the book I thought about the pros and ons of each side TThe advice I got was very similar to what I was thinking The first half of it had interested and engaged me maybe I would get interested again I don't like to spend 15 on a book and then not finish it At the same time though I'd struggled through 100 pages and was hopelessly bored I didn't think I'd want to pick

  9. says:

    This is Historical Fiction I enjoyed that aspect of this book The info was well researched Ireland's history was a perfect clean slate for this saga Now the main problem I have with sweeping sagas in general is tha

  10. says:

    Atrocious saga that never allows the reader opportunity to connect with any of the characters before leaping another century to yet another boring epoue in which the truly adventurous exciting bits are merely dryly narrated as a history text If I wanted to read a text book I would Give me a thrilling novel for goodness' sake

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