Masterfully interweaving engrossing fiction and well- researched fact, THE PRINCES OF IRELAND is an epic story of love, war, family and politics, spanning seventeen centuries of Ireland's history. The first installment of this two-part saga begins in pre-Christian Ireland with the reign of the mighty High Kings at Tara and the tragic love story of Conall and Deidre--a reworking of the celebrated Cuchulainn legend--and ends in 1573, with the desecration of Irish Catholic churches and shrines and the hanging of Silken Thomas ...
Masterfully interweaving engrossing fiction and well- researched fact, THE PRINCES OF IRELAND is an epic story of love, war, family and politics, spanning seventeen centuries of Ireland's history. The first installment of this two-part saga begins in pre-Christian Ireland with the reign of the mighty High Kings at Tara and the tragic love story of Conall and Deidre--a reworking of the celebrated Cuchulainn legend--and ends in 1573, with the desecration of Irish Catholic churches and shrines and the hanging of Silken Thomas during the reign of King Henry VIII. Monks, noblemen, soldiers, rebels, craftswomen and writers are just some of the characters cast in this saga that introduces all the major events in Irish history, including the tribal culture of pagan Ireland, the mission of St. Patrick, the coming of the Vikings, and the founding of Dublin.
First volume of the founding and development of Dublin, Ireland (* the 2nd book is "The Rebels of Ireland".).
I bought this book because I enjoyed one his first books " Sarum".
Ruherfurd likes to write epic novels covering long streches of time. This is one. Covers from 430 A.D. to the 1500's . (from St. Patrick to Henry the VIII)
He builds his characters throughout the continuing stories by injecting them in actual events. He brings us through the centuries by relating later characters to their ancestors using family names,physical traits, and/or personalities.
The book does well for the most part to keep you interested but you do have pay attentiion since the spelling and pronouciation of the names of persons & places change over time. (* author even includes a pronouciation guide in back of book). The maps and family trees in front of book help also!
Some parts of book do lag, but Rutherfurd tries to keep things as accurate as possible. This is an interesting way to learn Ireland's history, as you read a good novel.
I am giving this 4 stars because I'm 2/3rds of the way through the "Rebels of Ireland" and find it more enjoyable! Perhaps because I am more familiar with the history of these times. Plus the causes of national rebellion are fascinating!
Reading this 1st book is not a prerequisite to enjoy the 2nd... but I think it does help!
But I am a Edward Rutherfurd fan. And being of Irish descent this particular saga was of greater interest to me.
Hope you enjoy it too!
Jan 3, 2010
Never Developed for me
I feel bad because I really wanted to enjoy this book but it never truly grabbed me. In the very beginning I was intrigued by some of the characters but they never truly developed before he jumped to a new time with new characters. I was never really able to get comfortable in a time period before I was thrusted into a new one. I forced myself to finish this book although I had to re-read pieces several times because I found myself zoning out. I gave it too stars because although I didn't like it, I didn't hate it either. Some pieces were intriguing and interesting but all in all it was like reading a history book. I was hoping it would be more like Pillars of the Earth with it's writing but it is no where near it - in my eyes.
Jan 29, 2009
Good historical novel
I did enjoy this book. My ancesters came from Ireland. That makes it especially interesting to me.
Jul 19, 2008
Lots of history
This book is a little slow and a lot of information is packed into it. I have enjoyed it and bought the second book "The Rebels of Ireland." Being of Scots-Irish-English decent, it is fascinating to see how history played out. The book is broken up into time frames following the same families as time goes forward. We see the same decendents of traditional Irish Royalty as well as English families who intermarry and how the battle between the Protestants and the Catholics started. The facts of how Ireland is invaded by the various factions long before the English came and how the Irish lost their lands and are pushed out of their country is explained. I would recommend it to anyone who wants to see how the history of this great country was written. It makes me want to go there and see all the places they talk about, though the most of it is centered in Dublin.
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