Read Enemy of God by Bernard Cornwell Free Online
Book Title: Enemy of God|
The author of the book: Bernard Cornwell
Edition: St. Martin's Press
Date of issue: August 1st 1997
ISBN 13: 9780312155230
City - Country: No data
Loaded: 1322 times
Reader ratings: 5.5
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 990 KB
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Enemy of God, the second book in 'The Warlord Chronicles' trilogy by Bernard Cornwell, and the series so far, has truly been serendipity for me.
As I mentioned in my previous review, I’ve never bothered to start Cornwell’s work, it brings me joy when someone, a friend (even better again when it’s from one of your favorite authors) recommended a book/series to you and you loved it. That’s truly how I feel about the trilogy so far, Cornwell again compelled me with his original and haunting retelling of an Arthurian saga full of heroism and tragedy.
The now monk and Christian, Derfel Cadarn continues telling his tale to Igraine, his current Queen about his time as a Pagan, a time when he was called Lord Derfel Cadarn, Derfel the Mighty, Champion of Dumnonia and the beloved friend of Arthur. Derfel’s tale in Enemy of God begins in the year 495 AD, 15 years after the beginning of his tale in The Winter King and continues immediately from the aftermath of the last battle in the previous book. Most of the plot in the book focused on Merlin’s hunt for the Cauldron of Clyddno Eiddyn (or in modern names, the Holy Grail), driving back the Saxon, Camelot (Arthur’s glorious years of rule) and eventually, why Arthur earned the title ‘The Enemy of God, all told masterfully from Derfel’s 1st person omniscient-ish narrative.
“To hear the tales told at night-time hearths you would think we had made a whole new country in Britain, named it Camelot and peopled it with shining heroes, but the truth is that we simply ruled Dumnonia as best we could, we ruled it justly and we never called it Camelot”
A lot of heavy realistic topics were brought upon in this book. One of the most memorable moments being the complication to choose friendships or to uphold law and oath in the name of peace, even when you know the decision is wrong. On instincts, I’ll always choose friendship but what if, by choosing to save that friend, you risk killing millions of people? Will you still go through with it? Or will you follow the law, saving millions of people’s lives that you don’t know in exchange of your loyal friend’s existence?
“Arthur did try to change the world and his instrument was love”
That topic is very well written but imo, the best part of the book lies on another realistic topic and definitely the factor with the strongest emphasis, religion, specifically on Christianity, Pagan and the mystery of the Goddess, Isis.
“It's only when you're lost and frightened and in the dark that you call on the Gods, and they like us to call on them. It makes them feel powerful, and that's why they like us to live in chaos.”
The entire discussion and conflict on religions are very thought provoking. It made me think a lot on faith and afterlife, which honestly, unsettled me a bit. This goes to show just how well written this book is. There is a sense of hope, glory, friendship, and loss that were told. While the first half is still slow paced, the pacing is much more balanced now compared to the previous book where the first half was so dense with descriptions and minim dialogues. The second half has faster paced, the last two chapters (more or less the last 60 pages of the book), in particular, were damn thrilling despite having only a small amount of actions.
I honestly don’t know how I can tell you just how well written this book is. It’s simple, beautiful, haunting, and vivid. Although every chapter is still very long, with 13 chapters out of 470 pages, it never felt like a slog going through it because Cornwell’s prose worked so well for me.
The only minor con I had with the book is that I find myself a bit disappointed by the lack of battle scenes in it. It’s the second book already and I still haven’t seen any of Cornwell’s supposedly memorable battle scenes. This doesn’t mean the book isn’t thrilling or filled with suspense at all, the second half of the book was so addictive and thrilling despite having minimum actions as I mentioned. However, I came into this series expecting to see a lot of war scenes but haven’t seen any yet aside from the climax in book 1, which was still too short for my taste. Do note that this is just a minor con due to my expectation, for the quality of the storytelling solely never fails to captivate me.
Enemy of God is a fantastic sequel to bridge the gap towards the final book in the trilogy, 'Excalibur.' I love the previous book, love this one even more and I hope the last one will continue the same tradition. I totally recommend this for any lover of historical fiction and Arthurian saga.
You can find this and the rest of my Adult Epic/High Fantasy & Sci-Fi reviews at BookNest
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Read information about the authorCornwell was born in London in 1944. His father was a Canadian airman, and his mother, who was English, a member of the Women's Auxiliary Air Force. He was adopted and brought up in Essex by the Wiggins family, who were members of the Peculiar People, a strict Protestant sect who banned frivolity of all kinds and even medicine. After he left them, he changed his name to his birth mother's maiden name, Cornwell.
Cornwell was sent away to Monkton Combe School, attended the University of London, and after graduating, worked as a teacher. He attempted to enlist in the British armed services at least three times but was rejected on the grounds of myopia.
He then joined BBC's Nationwide and was promoted to become head of current affairs at BBC Northern Ireland. He then joined Thames Television as editor of Thames News. He relocated to the United States in 1980 after marrying an American. Unable to get a green card, he started writing novels, as this did not require a work permit.
As a child, Cornwell loved the novels of C.S. Forester, chronicling the adventures of fictional British naval officer Horatio Hornblower during the Napoleonic Wars, and was surprised to find there were no such novels following Lord Wellington's campaign on land. Motivated by the need to support himself in the U.S. through writing, Cornwell decided to write such a series. He named his chief protagonist Richard Sharpe, a rifleman involved in most major battles of the Peninsular War.
Cornwell wanted to start the series with the Siege of Badajoz but decided instead to start with a couple of "warm-up" novels. These were Sharpe's Eagle and Sharpe's Gold, both published in 1981. Sharpe's Eagle was picked up by a publisher, and Cornwell got a three-book deal. He went on to tell the story of Badajoz in his third Sharpe novel, Sharpe's Company, published in 1982.
Cornwell and wife Judy co-wrote a series of novels, published under the pseudonym "Susannah Kells". These were A Crowning Mercy, published in 1983, Fallen Angels in 1984, and Coat of Arms (aka The Aristocrats) in 1986. (Cornwell's strict Protestant upbringing informed the background of A Crowning Mercy, which took place during the English Civil War.) In 1987, he also published Redcoat, an American Revolutionary War novel set in Philadelphia during its 1777 occupation by the British.
After publishing eight books in his ongoing Sharpe series, Cornwell was approached by a production company interested in adapting them for television. The producers asked him to write a prequel to give them a starting point to the series. They also requested that the story feature a large role for Spanish characters to secure co-funding from Spain. The result was Sharpe’s Rifles, published in 1987, and a series of Sharpe television films staring Sean Bean.
A series of contemporary thrillers with sailing as a background and common themes followed: Wildtrack published in 1988, Sea Lord (aka Killer's Wake) in 1989, Crackdown in 1990, Stormchild in 1991, and Scoundrel, a political thriller, in 1992.
In June 2006, Cornwell was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in the Queen's 80th Birthday Honours List.
Cornwell's latest work, Azincourt, was released in the UK in October 2008. The protagonist is an archer who participates in the Battle of Agincourt, another devastating defeat suffered by the French in the Hundred Years War. However, Cornwell has stated that it will not be about Thomas of Hookton from The Grail Quest or any of his relatives.
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