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Death of Kings (The Saxon Stories, #6)
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Death of Kings (The Warrior Chronicles/Saxon Stories #6)

4.23 of 5 stars 4.23  ·  rating details  ·  7,824 ratings  ·  513 reviews
The master of historical fiction presents the iconic story of King Alfred and the making of a nation. As the ninth century wanes, England appears about to be plunged into chaos once more. For the Viking-raised but Saxon-born warrior, Uhtred, whose life seems to shadow the making of England, this presents him with difficult choices. King Alfred is dying and his passing thre ...more
Hardcover, 335 pages
Published September 29th 2011 by HarperCollins Publishers
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The Last Kingdom by Bernard CornwellThe Pale Horseman by Bernard CornwellLords of the North by Bernard CornwellThe Burning Land by Bernard CornwellSword Song by Bernard Cornwell
Viking Historical Fiction
6th out of 67 books — 135 voters
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Best Middle Ages Books
125th out of 881 books — 1,088 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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StoryTellerShannon
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mark
May 14, 2012 Mark rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone keen on blood and gore but able to cross their legs
Recommended to Mark by: W H Smith
A few days ago I was sent the following joke.

'A girl, no better than she should be, goes to the local council to gain some help. She has ten sons and when asked their names she says
"Nathan, Nathan, Nathan, Nathan etc ". The official asks her 'Isn't that a bit confusing ?'. 'No', she says 'It makes my life so much easier. I just go out into the street and say 'Nathan, time for bed' or 'Nathan, time for supper' and in they come. Simple as that'.

'But what happens if you want to speak to one individ
...more
Algernon

Bernard Cornwell is a prolific author, and usually reliable to deliver a solid historical novel with clearly sketched battle scenes and heroic deeds of valor, yet not all things are created equal and I have come to appreciate some of his stuff more than others. The Saxon Chronicles are at the top of my preference list, together with his Arthurian epic (The Warlord Saga). And Death of Kings may be the best of the Saxon books published yet.

Alfred the Great is on his death bed, his long illness
...more
Paula Lofting


The blurb: The 6th book in the Uhtred series. As usual, Uhtred is at odds with most of his fellow countrymen, hunted by the Danes that he admires and banished to an impoverished estate in Mercia. His only ally is his lover Aethelflaed, Lady of the Mercians and King Alfred's daughter. When the King dies, Uhtred is compelled as usual to swear another oath and this time he pledges to serve his old King's son, Edward, the new king and ensure that Edward's cousin, Aethelwold, his cousin, does not get
...more
Joe
Ah, another historical action novels from one of my guilty pleasures, Bernard Cornwell. I know, it's not literature but it sure is fun. I've heard him called the greatest living historical novelist. That might be true if we insist on the "living" qualification. While his books are always grand action-adventures of male fantasy, he's not quite Patrick O'Brian.

This latest addition to the chronical of Uhtred, the Saxon warlord is a delightful departure from the usual Cornwell style. The grand, spla
...more
Mike
4 Stars for Death of Kings. Uhtred is back in form after the last 2 books on the series where I thought he just meandered aimlessly. Uhtred is the man with a plan in this chapter. Alfred finally kicks the bucket--after so many episodes on the "death bed". Seriously, Alfred was like a parody of a Shakespeare play, he's dead....no he's well...he's dead...no he's alive... Edward becomes king but can he keep the crown? Some great new characters show up here and Cornwell's treatment of Christians and ...more
Lee Broderick
Uhtred is back. Without giving away plot spoilers though, the book occupies awkward territory. We know it's the penultimate book in the series and the entire novel reads like a build up to that climax. Which it is; a cruel trick to play on us readers and I can only hope that the final volume arrives a little more quickly than this episode did.

Uhtred has some fun along the way, but is mostly chasing shadows through the book, and it's always a little disappointing to figure things out before the h
...more
Rob
Once again, Bernard Cornwell has provided me with a page turner that simply cannot be put down. Uhtred is probably one of my favourite anti-heroes, with his gruff demeanor, love of battle and hatred and disdain for the church, whats not to love?

As always, Bernards story resides within historical fact, with the death of King Alfred and the succession of his son King Edward the Elder eventually making battle with the Danes, with the backdrop of Aethelwolds revolt included. I love these books beca
...more
Kate Quinn
The sixth installment in the adventures of Uhtred of Bebbanburg, impatiently awaited and worth the wait. This one has a more thoughtful tone than the others, since it hinges on everyone waiting to see when Alfred the Great will die, and whether they will be able to survive the attack that will surely come from the Danes afterward. Their best hope of keeping Alfred's fragile kingdom together is Uhtred, but will Alfred's young successor trust him? Uhtred snaps and snarls and swears at priests, del ...more
Michela
"TODO DIA É UM DIA COMUM — disse o padre Willibald — até o momento que não é mais."
Terri
Another super instalment in the Saxon Series. Probably lacking a little of the twinkle and sparkle that I want from this series, especially since I had read The Burning Land right before Death of Kings and it served up all the twinkle and sparkle that a girl like me could need.
Rockin' ending though.

Willow
I decided to give “Death of Kings” five stars, simply because I was just so happy to read about Uthred again. What can I say, I just love his character. I must admit though, this book isn’t as good as Pale Horseman by a long shot. But of course, that one was simply my fav. This book seemed to end somewhat abruptly, so I can see where some reviewers might have felt cheated.

There are so many things I love about Bernard Cornwell’s writing. One is that he captures the time period so well. I feel li
...more
Nate
So yeah, these are still good. I've pretty much run out of ways to say "these books are still good" in the beginning of these reviews without actually saying it so I figured I'd just actually say it. This one was a bit different in vibe from the others, though. It's hard to pin down exactly what made it stand out from the other so much. It seemed darker, mostly due to the whole Alfred thing. Also the whole "cave witch" scene rivaled the talking corpse from Sword Song in terms of creepiest scenes ...more
Bernie Charbonneau
I am not sure how to honestly describe this book. Mr. Cornwell is probably my favorite historical Fiction writer and the Saxon Series, is for me, one of the best running series going. I have really enjoyed all the previous 5 novels but this latest one is a conundrum.
In this latest novel I felt it was a disconnection from the the previous novels. The excitement and flow of the adventure just wasn't apparent in this piece of the Anglo-Saxon history. This to me read like a recap of what has transpi
...more
Mark
My guilty pleasure reading of this series resumes after a couple months hiatus. Given that the title of the book is Death of Kings, I don't think that it's much of a spoiler to sum up the happenings as the aftermath of the death of Alfred, who has been a dominant force in the narrative for such a long time. Now it's not Alfred who is so important but the relationship that Uhtred has with each of Alfred's older children, namely Aethelflaed and Edward, who becomes king after Alfred.

When I was read
...more
Vagner Stefanello
Review in Portuguese from Desbravando Livros:

Depois de derrotar o exército de Haesten em Beamflot, outro perigo se aproxima: a morte de Alfredo, o Grande. Com a saúde extremamente debilitada, a qualquer hora o rei pode morrer e os dinamarqueses só pensam em se aproveitar desse momento para finalmente conquistar Wessex, depois de várias tentativas frustradas.

Para mim, o 6º livro das Crônicas Saxônicas não manteve o bom ritmo dos livros anteriores. Não que isso seja ruim, mas eu estava tão acostum
...more
Newton Nitro
O sexto livro das aventuras do pagão mais doidimais desse lado da literatura, o mega-mass Uthred se passa logo depois d amorte do Rei Alfred, o Grande, o que detona uma disputa feroz e brutal entre Saxões e Dinamarqueses pelo controle total da terra que se tornará a Inglaterra.

A saga de Uhtred continua, agora o nosso guerreiro pagão está mais velho e maduro, porém ainda nutre seu ódio e repulsa ao cristianismo, ao mesmo tempo que luta para manter o sonho do Rei Alfred de união entre os saxões e
...more
Graham
The sixth book in Bernard Cornwell's Saxon Stories - following straight on from THE BURNING LAND - offers more of the same for those familiar with Uhtred's adventures. In essence, it's a time of fractured peace, with Danes lurking ever-present on the horizon and threatening to upset England's fragile state.

It's no great spoiler to reveal that Alfred the Great dies in this outing, which makes for some intriguing events, but elsewhere there's little to distinguish this book from the rest in the se
...more
HBalikov
I am expecting that Cornwell is winding up his Saxon historical novels. Alfred, whose dreams of uniting England are the foundation of these books, is dying. Utred, feared but not trusted, is "exiled" to Mercia where he contemplates his future.

A slower start than the other novels has Utred seeking out a soothsayer in hopes of learning how the conflicts between Saxon and Dane will be resolved upon Alfred's death. After 100 pages we get to see how Utred's strategic efforts stand up against the tact
...more
Quinby6696 Frank
I've never been able to get interested in Bernard Cornwell's Sharpe novels, but I love his other books!. Death of Kings (Saxon Tales) is a mesmerizing account of the death of Alfred the Great and the struggles of his successors to keep his dream of a united England alive. It doesn't matter that it takes at least half of the book to get the Aethelms, and Aelfadells, and Aethelflads straight in your head-- never mind the Sigulfs, and Sigurds, and Sigunns. You're routing for Uhtred the main charact ...more
Ed
Jun 23, 2013 Ed rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Historical Fiction and Cornwell Fans
I am an unabashed Cornwell admirer. In addition to the Richard Sharpe series, I have read all the titles in the Saxon Stories Series. This particular title is one of the best. Uhtred, is faced with a number of dilemmas. He continues to practice the Viking religion he was taught as a child even though he serves a king, Alfred, who is an extremely devout Christian. He has an ongoing love affair with Aethelred, the king's sister, who is married to another Noble. He has little wealth even though he ...more
Susan Johnson
Uhtred fights again which is not surprising since his main goal in life is to die with a sword in his hand. Uhtred is a warrior through and through. He finds peace boring and trains his men every day so they can be the best warriors. He and his sword, Sepent-Breath, was the most famous Saxon warrior. In one battle he says. "Still more men came to kill me because my name was the name poets would give to their glory."
But Uhtred is more than a warrior. He may be the Saxon warrior leader but he was
...more
Robin Carter
I have to say that recently with Bernard Cornwell my loyalty to his skill and many years in the business have kept me coming back more that the books, dont get me wrong they were a good read, but they were not books i "HAD" to read, you know, the type that jumps to the top of your reading pile.

Well Death of Kings puts that to bed, Bernard is really back to his best, for me at least. I always loved the sarcasm and explosive violence of Uthred, his utter disregard for the church in a time where ev
...more
T.D. McKinnon

‘Death of Kings’ is the sixth book in the ‘Saxon Chronicles’ series. The land that would one day be England, at the end of the 9th century AD, is more than fifty percent occupied by Danish speaking Norsemen. They initially raided as Vikings more than one hundred years before, and had now been invading and settling the land for nearly fifty years.

By this time most of the English speaking population had converted to Christianity and King Alfred (remembered now as Alfred the Great), King of Wessex
...more
Jamie Langes
Another great continuation of the story of Uhtred!

As with the other 5 Saxon stories, this novel offers the evolution of the Saxons toward Englishman via a continuation of Uhtred's narrative. What I think is both great about the other stories in the series but also a bit more unique about this novel in the series, is the clever military strategy. The Death of Kings really does keep you guessing as to what will happen across the chess board. There are many moving parts to consider, and the betraya
...more
Michael K Martin
I started reading Bernard Cornwell with the Sharpe series. Not only was I entertained, I also gobbled up several thousand dollars worth of history classes. I now know a lot about the Wellington's campaigns in Portugal, Spain, and France.

This book covers another era altogether, and probably has more speculation in it, because the history around the Dane/Saxon wars in England is is a lot older and incomplete. However, the characters are strongly written, and I gobbled this book in a matter of day
...more
Tosh
Again, this wasn't one of my favorites in the series up to this point - still unbelievably good though.

The map on the kindle edition was incredibly small. Seriously. You'd need a magnifying glass to read it. No zoom option either. The map is important, especially when strategies are employed. However, I survived this small inconvenience surprisingly unscathed.

*full review at finale
Adriana
Urthred is now more mature and still has great reputation. Still fighting for Alfred, Aethelflaed and later for Edward, he is now in Mercia hoping to defeat the local Danish lords. This book has the key ingredients for another great Saxon story: betrayal, death, shield wall and Urthred!

In my opinion though, the best book of this series so far was the ‘Lords of the North’. I can understand why the author keep Urthred away from Bebbanburg so he can be closer to the events that will lead to the cre
...more
Tasha
Closer to 4.5. Not because of anything spectacular (although the ending is quite fantastic) but just because it is Bernard Cornwell writing and Uthred of Babbenburg narrating. A great mix in my opinion. The perfect blend! Now that I am finally completely caught up in the series I WILL be running out to get the next installment the minute it is available...hopefully by 9/2013!!
Ron
Death of Kings is the sixth installment in Warrior Chronicles by Bernard Cornwell and it covers Æthelwold's revolt and the Battle of Holme.

Threat is looming around Wessex, new Danish lords from the north are forming an alliance and promise to muster a host England has never seen before to conquer the remaining lands that aren't occupied by Danes yet which includes Wessex, and Alfred, the King of the Angelcynn is in his last days.

The Ætheling Edward was crowned as King of Cent by his father and
...more
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12542
Cornwell was born in London in 1944. His father was a Canadian airman, and his mother 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 mother's maiden name, Cornwe ...more
More about Bernard Cornwell...

Other Books in the Series

The Warrior Chronicles/Saxon Stories (9 books)
  • The Last Kingdom (The Saxon Stories, #1)
  • The Pale Horseman (The Saxon Stories, #2)
  • Lords of the North (The Saxon Stories, #3)
  • Sword Song (The Saxon Stories, #4)
  • The Burning Land (The Saxon Stories, #5)
  • The Pagan Lord (The Saxon Stories, #7)
  • The Empty Throne (The Saxon Stories, #8)
  • Warriors of the Storm (The Warrior Chronicles/Saxon Stories #9)
The Last Kingdom (The Saxon Stories, #1) The Winter King (The Warlord Chronicles, #1) The Pale Horseman (The Saxon Stories, #2) Lords of the North (The Saxon Stories, #3) The Archer's Tale (The Grail Quest, #1)

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