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The Road to Jerusalem (The Crusades Trilogy #1)

3.99  ·  Rating Details ·  5,170 Ratings  ·  245 Reviews
For power. For passion. For glory.

The epic story of the Knights Templar.

Born in 1150 to a noble Swedish family and coming of age at a monastery under the tutelage of a Cistercian monk and a former Knight Templar, young Arn Magnusson is sent to fulfill his destiny beyond the cloister walls. But the world awaiting him is a place at odds with his monastic ways. And when the m
Kindle Edition
Published (first published 1998)
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James Kirk The book doesn't portray the Catholic Church positively or negatively. It is more of a social commentary than a commentary on the Church. On the one…moreThe book doesn't portray the Catholic Church positively or negatively. It is more of a social commentary than a commentary on the Church. On the one hand, it discusses the pain of the child being given away to the church as a monk. On the other hand, it shows what a vast variety of skills Arn (the lead character) receives only because he was raised in a church environment.

Regardless, the church is not the focus of this book but rather, the emotions and attitudes shaped because of our environment.(less)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Mohammed Orabi
Oct 28, 2016 Mohammed Orabi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, 2016

نحن لا نستطيع ان ندرك بمحدودية عقولنا وعدم نفاذ بصيرتنا ما تخبئه اقدارنا وما يحمله المستقبل لنا من خير .. نتذمر ونشعر بالضيق امام العقبات الصغيرة التى تظهر امامنا .. نحزن لفقدان من نحب او لفشل
موقت ونشعر بان الحياة اصبحت ترفضنا واننا لن نستطيع ان نكلمل
رحلتنا بها .. ننسى كثيرا أن رحمة ورعايا الله تشملنا فى جميع الاوقات
وان تلك الازمات ليست سوى اختبار إلهي وبدون تلك الاختبارات ستفقد الحياة قيمتها وستصبح مجرد رحلة لتمضية بعض الوقت فقط قبل
الرحيل عنها ، تلك المقدمة كانت ضرورية للغاية لوصف شخصية كان
Feb 05, 2012 Edith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nordic or Saxon-based fantasy or historical novels, when written by those outside of the respective countries, tend to turn into a gamut of stereotypical scenarios involving ale and whore houses, lootin' and pillagin', and some booze fueled mano a mano manly combat, with some barbaric execution and torture practices thrown in for good measure. All this is supposed to exude that rugged sense of manhood and bonding and brotherhood that kept life going in the longhouses on the icy land. Instead the ...more
Dec 03, 2014 Ibrahim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorite
يان غيو كاتب وصحفي سويدي مؤلف هذه الثلاثية (الطريق إلى القدس - فارس العبد - المملكة في نهاية الطريق). قام بترجمتها المترجم الجزائري مدني قصري الذي ترجم من قبل روايتي (فتاة البرتقال) و (سر الصبر) للكاتب النرويجي جوستاين غاردر، والتي صدرت عن دار المنى.

تدور أحداث الرواية في القرن الثاني عشر في أوج الحروب والغزوات الصليبية. بطل الرواية آرن شائت له الظروف أن يعيش في دير للرهبان، وجد معلمه فيه مهارات قام بصقلها بتعليمه استخدام السيف والقوس، بجانب اتقانه لأمور كثيرة في مجال البناء وبالتأكيد العلوم الدي
Feb 25, 2012 Howard rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The Crusades Trilogy tells the saga of Arn Magnusson in the late 12th century. The story of Arn itself is fascinating although entirely fictional. Written history of the Northern people in that time period is extremely sparse leaving much wiggle room for Jan Guillou to create a fantasy-like tale set in an extremely vivid period of history.
Although I only rated the first book "The Road to Jerusalem" with two stars I gave books 2 & 3 a better rating. The greatest strength of the trilogy is
It's an uncomplicated read. Often boring. Sometimes interesting.

The extreme naivete of Arn is not my most favorite trait in a main character. While later in the story he has a more 'in the world but not of the world' quality that stems from his religious upbringing, it wasn't enough to make up for the earlier naive innocence that annoyed me so much.

The characters had no real depth for me. They haven't been fleshed out to real people, just distant foreign historical figures thrown into a story. I
Dec 09, 2011 ala' rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
أربع أشهر من القراءة كانت هي الفترة التي استغرقها هذا الكتاب لأنهي قرائته رغم انه لا يتجاوز ال 400 صفحة - أقل قليلا - أي أنه بحطجم أي كتاب عادي آخر أقرأه ، لكن هذا الكتاب كان مرهقا فعلا.
ينتمي الكتاب الى أدب الملاحم ، الذي لم أستسغه في أحد الأيام ، ورغم اسماء الاماكن والاشخاص المعقدة والكثيرة ، وفحوى الصراع السياسي الذي لم استطع كشف اغواره جدا ، والذي ويقف حائلا بعض الشيء بيني وبين الكتاب ، لكن المؤلف استطاع ان يقنعني بطريقة -لا أعلمها حتى اللحظة - ، الى العودة الى الكتاب في كل مرة أتركه فيها ..
Jud Tirawieh
Jul 24, 2015 Jud Tirawieh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
أشعر أني مخمورة الآن واني يجب ان لا اكتب هذا الكلام !
الا انني مشدوهة انه انتهي اي الجزء الأول , اشعر انني اريد المزيد , بل اني اتضور جوعاً إلى المزيد
كان الكتاب , نقلة حياتيه , وواقع لا يمكن غض الطرف عنه , لقد صوّر الحرب الصليبية و نشأنها في اعين الصليبين بدقة او بالأحرى الحياة المسيحية في الشمال , والمنشأ الأصلي لـ فرسان الهيكل اولئك الذي يقودون الحرب !
بغض النظر انني انتشيت حقاً بالأحداث , وبالسرد واللغة و القصة و التعقيدات , بـ نفسية آرن قبل ان يتوغل في الواقع , ب النفس البشرية التي لربما قص
Jan Guillou je 3. skandinavski autor (nakon Stieg Larsson i Jo Nesbø) s kojim se susrećem u zadnje vrijeme i moram priznati da su me zainteresirali za skandinavsku književnost, jer su stilom i žanrom različiti (ne padajte na reklamni slogan ''Jo Nesbø je novi Stieg Larsson''!).
''Put u Jeruzalem'' je jedan u podužem nizu povijesnih romana koje sam pročitala u zadnje vrijeme (mislim da mi treba barem kratka pauza), pa se ne mogu oteti potrebi da ga usporedim s Bijela kraljica by Philippa Gregory i Raskol by C.J. Sansom.
''Put u Jeruzalem'' i ''Bijelu kraljicu'' povezuje narativan
Ahmed Al-Emadi
Apr 17, 2016 Ahmed Al-Emadi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: رفوفي
رواية مثيرة جداً للإهتمام تلقي الضوء على الجزء الآخر من العالم خلال فترة الحروب الصليبية. برغم حساسية الموضوع إلا أن الرواية تفيض بالصور الإنسانية و الروحية. كأن خلافاتنا هي نتيجة لسوء التفاهم الحاصل بيننا و أننا كبشر قريبون جداً لبعضنا البعض. كعادة دار المنى، إبداع في الترجمة والإخراج...
Apr 29, 2009 Laura rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Misfit, Susanna
Recommended to Laura by: Bettie (Goodreads Reader!)
Kindly sent by my dear friend Bettie. Just arrived today!!

The first book of a trilogy but I wasn't really engaged into the plot. I am not sure I would read the rest of this trilogy. 2,5 stars.
M.L. Roberts
Jul 03, 2011 M.L. Roberts rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
*Brilliant depiction of medieval times, centered in the land that would become Sweden*
Caught between the turmoil resulting from the crusades and the medieval rivalries of kings and church, a young man discovers his inheritance and sets out to realize his destiny.
In fulfillment of a promise made to God, a woman of noble means, commits her young son to the care of the Cistercian monks. The boy is Arn, and at first he is crushed to be torn away from his family. But his natural brightness, intellige
Dan Ryder
Dec 12, 2014 Dan Ryder rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A lovely book. Unlike some other reviewers, I found the distinctive writing style to be quite delightful. Guillou can move effortlessly from the point of view of the naïve Arn, to that of a timid mother in law, to a wise priest, to a calculating nobleman, all in the space of a few pages. It must be admitted that the character of Arn seems almost drawn from a fairy tale, but the encounter of such a character with the (historically accurate) political complexity and occasional brutality of medieva ...more
Noah Degenhardt
Nov 05, 2014 Noah Degenhardt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was fantastic. It has the proper historical accuracy that a historical fiction should have. Jan Guillou is a fabulous, well-versed author who can paint the world with his words, tickle the senses with his diction, and transport you into a world of love, betrayal, pain, sin and spirituality. If you're a reader who even has a passing interest in history, i would recommend this book to you. But we warned: the story is very complex and moves fast. Simply be careful and try to look at the b ...more
Stephen Plank
Jun 30, 2014 Stephen Plank rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
By far and away the best trilogy that I have ever read. Having seen ARN, a movie that spun all three books into one movie - a gem, I had to read the books. The movie was the most expensive adventure that Sweden had ever put into a movie according to Wikipedia and it was worth it with one exception - the third book was cut short in so may ways. This first book sets up the characters in what will become the nation of Sweden.
Darko Šunjić
Odlična prva knjiga, s razlogom hvaljena. Nadam se da su i ostale u serijalu jednake kvalitete. U ovoj knjizi Arn je daleko od nekog stereotipa viteza templara to tek treba postati i zato mi je zanimljivo bilo pratiti njegovo učenje i poimanje svijeta izvan samostana. Preporuka!
Mar 18, 2017 Nancy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Detailed without being tedious. Great read about the making of a Templar Knight in a positive and somewhat tragic light.
First Read: 22.11.12

Re-read: 5.6.14

I re-read this in preparation to finish the trilogy seeing as I have entirely forgotten most of the story! I'm glad I had otherwise I'd have been very confused by the second book. I wish I could remember more details when I read books. Anyway. I enjoyed it still just as much but have changed it from a 5 star to a 4 star. Whilst it is still very good and high up there with many books, I'm nowadays trying to reserve 5 stars for those that I find exceptional. Some
mohab samir
Nov 27, 2015 mohab samir rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
ولأنى أعشق التاريخ كان ليخيب ظنى فى هذه الرواية لو لم تكن على هذا القدر من الوضوح والحياد والمتعة .
آرن ماغنسون الطفل الذى صحبت ولادته معجزة تجلى العذراء لأمه والذى تعرض للموت فى طفولته لكنه عاد للحياة بفضل معجزة من القديس برنار بعد ان إبتهل والديه إليه كى ينقذ ولدهما من الموت ونذره لخدمة الله إذا تم ذلك , فيلتحق آرن الصغير بطائفة الرهبان السيستريين أتباع القديس برنار وينشأ على أشد تعاليم المسيحية الرهبانية صرامة .
آرن الذى نشأ على حياة الرهبانية يروع حين يخرج للعالم الفانى فى شبابه يروعه أثام الب
Amber Cooke
Jun 22, 2012 Amber Cooke rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I cannot put my finger on exactly why I loved this book so much.  It's something about Arn. He is such an ideal hero: skilled and courageous, innocent and honest, ethical to excess, but with a tragic weakness for human love.  What is not to admire?  I was drawn to read the series by the cinematic adaptation, but in the old proverbial way, I enjoyed the book so much more.  This first installment is all about Arn's upbringing and the social/political climate that formed his education.  I like the ...more
Aug 06, 2013 Matt rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Don't give up on this book. The first half is very slow and basically sets the background for the main character. The second half really picks up. The author's writing style grew on me, it really does make the book seem authentic to that time period. I would give the book 3.5 stars if it were possible because of the slow start. But the 2nd half was a solid 4 stars because of the content and originality.

On the negative side, I would say that the author could have done a better job developing the
Well the fates were not very kind to poor Arn who finds his love only to have it snatched away from him. I liked this book but it was only average. It had times were the pages flew by and at other times seemed really slow. Following the names was difficult at first but soon got used to it. Thought the story was going to be more about Sigrid at the start but then about a third of the way through we find this is not the case and Arn emerges as the main character. He is a good person to get behind ...more
Apr 10, 2011 Diane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well-written, sweeping historical epic about a young Swedish nobleman who goes to the Holy Land as a Crusader during the High Middle Ages. This book, the first in the trilogy, deals with the main character's upbringing and the events that led him to become a knight. Although this book did not have as much in-depth character description/development as I'd like, the author did a wonderful job of describing the period and making it seem very realistic. I also found the Scandanavian perspective very ...more
Marat M. Yavrumyan
Գրքի ու հեղինակի վրա իմ ուշադրությունը Հայկ Զ-ի ոգևորված արձագանքը (շարքի չորրորդ պատմության մասին) գրավեց։ Նման ոգևորվածությամբ պատանի տարիներին միայն երևի առագաստանավերի մասին եմ կարդացել։ Հիասքանչ պատմություն է։ Ափսոս բացի առաջինից՝ մյուս հատորներին անցնել չկարողացա, հուսամ ժամանակ կգտնեմ ու դրանք նույքան հետքրքիր կլինին, ինչպիսին առաջինն է։
This book really took me by surprise and is the best book I've read in months. It was so good that I'm actually writing a review, which I have never done before. The description of the book doesn't do the story justice. And the writing is phenomenal!! I would recommend this book to just about anyone.
Sep 04, 2015 Talična rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Mislim da sam zaslužila nagradu što sam se natjerala da ju pročitam do kraja. Dosadno i loše ispričano, a "briljantnog i uzbudljivog" što su pisali po recenzijama na poleđini i zadnjim stranicama knjige se moglo naći samo u dijelovima kada bi neki od likovva izjavio da mora pišati.
Peter Kavanagh
Sep 14, 2013 Peter Kavanagh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting novel set in the middle ages. Set in Sweden, I have to say the style reminded me of the sagas that came from that part of the world during the time period in which the story takes place. Looking forward to reading the rest of the series.
Luiza Padiu
Feb 26, 2016 Luiza Padiu rated it it was amazing
Great book

It is a good introduction to a important historical moment.
After reading it I am interested to find out more.
Lisbeth Sundman
Sep 26, 2015 Lisbeth Sundman rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Incredible book about the early times before sweden was a united kingdom.
Odličan prvi dio.. Zarazan!! Jedva čekam nastavke :-)
Asif Deepro
Feb 02, 2015 Asif Deepro rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
ektu dhorjo dhore porte hbe......ekhni 2nd part suru korbo :D
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Jan Oscar Sverre Lucien Henri Guillou (born 17 January 1944) is a Swedish author and journalist. Among his books are a series of spy fiction novels about a spy named Carl Hamilton, and a trilogy of historical fiction novels about a Knight Templar, Arn Magnusson. He is the owner of one of the largest publishing companies in Sweden, Piratförlaget, together with Liza Marklund and his common-law wife, ...more
More about Jan Guillou...

Other Books in the Series

The Crusades Trilogy (3 books)
  • The Knight Templar (The Crusades Trilogy, #2)
  • The Kingdom at the End of the Road (The Crusades Trilogy, #3)

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“A person had to learn to come to terms with the fate determined for him by God. It would do no good to grumble that one would rather be someone else or live somewhere else. Instead one had to try to make the best of the situation; that was the only way to fulfill God’s plans.” 1 likes
“What troubled Father Henri was that Arn’s apparently unwarranted worries might actually be expressing something else, a great loneliness.” 0 likes
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