Sword Song (The Warrior Chronicles/Saxon Stories #4)
The year is 885, and England is at peace, divided between the Danish Kingdom to the north and the Saxon kingdom of Wessex in the south. Warrior by instinct and Viking by nature, Uhtred, the dispos...more
I have to say that I'm proud of Uhtred. A whole 300+ pages and he didn't commit a single...more
I had a genuine love-hate relationship..wait!...love-hate is too strong..let's go with...like-dislike....so, I had a genuine like-dislike relationship with this book. I liked it, yes indeed, but I didn't like all of it and I didn't always like the way it made me feel. I want to try and expound on this,...more
The Saxon Chronicles, panned from the outset as Cornwell trying to return to his British roots, has proven to be a juggernaut that cannot be stopped by bad and, in this case, off-base, press reviews.
Book 4, 'Sword Song: The Battle for London', continues the story of Lord Uhtred, Saxon born, Dane raised, sworn man of King Alfred the great. In this installment, Uhtred fights to take London back from the invading Northemen, the Vikings....more
Ah, Cornwell, you did it yet again. Love, love, love this series!
Uhtred is a little less, uh, murderous in this one (which only means he doesn't kill unarmed -priests- in cold blood). It still has the humor brutality of war, vivid descriptions of life, Uhtred's spontaneous actions, and some new wonderful (and easily hated villainous) characters. A solid novel, highly enjoyable, that had me loving every single word.
And then *bam*, Cornwell actually managed to surprise me with a plot...more
So many writers of historical fiction...more
One thing that did detract a little was the reader. For some reason, they changed narrators in the series with this book. I like the new reader, but he does pronounce several of the names differently than the previous reader. I often found mysel...more
Bernard Cornwell is always faithful to historical sources in all of his works, but he's also a good story teller, so I really enjoyed the main plot in this which was mostly the author's invention.
It is, in my opinion, the least interesting of the four. The battle scenes, as in all Cornwell's writings, are drawn with extraordinary clarity. There are also some very interesting new characters, Siegfried and Erik, two Norsemen brothers plus an assortment of priests, warriors, and women.
The thread of the story involves the desire of Siegfried and Erik to conquer Wessex, Alfred the Great's ki...more
Everyone remembers the middle ages as knights jousting on horseback. But Cornwell in this series goes back hundreds of years earlier, to Saxons and Vikings battling over England with axes and shields. The amazing battle scenes are so researched that you totally become a part of this primitive, brutal style of warfare -- with the shield wall meeting the terrible sta...more
Now Uhtred is beating up on more Danes in Lundene (or London). He kills a lot, tricks a lot of...more
In this next to last Saxon tale, Uhtred is once again back in Wessex, pledged to King Alfred despite his best intentions, and forced to watch as Alfred relies on his military skills, while sharing his kingdom with Uhtred's slimy cousin, Aethelred.
Aethelred was a real historical figure who probably behaved better than Cornwell has given him credit for, the author admits, but he needs a villain as a foil for his hero Uhtred. In this book, we encounter two more Norse warriors, the brothers Sigifred...more
In this novel, Mr Cornwell veers pretty substantially from the historical record. Well, the known record. Much of what he describes in the book could happen, we just lack the written record to back it up. Some may saw that this...more
Clearly I'm in the minority on this issue, as the critical acclaim for this series has been abundant, so if you are a bit of a history buff I'd still say this is well worth a read...more
Overall, Sword Song is just as enjoyable as the last three Saxon Stories books. Uhtred is Uhtred, the action is tense, and the story is one I'm deeply invested in at this point. All in all, if you enjoyed the last three books in the series you will very likely enjoy this one as well.
What didn't work for me? Uhtred believing a dead man's prophecies without displaying his typical skepticism for certain...more
There are more pious priests than ever before, not as much war and fighting, Alfred is even more annoying but there are several good characters added to the Danes side and the story ends with a bang.
This was a great book and it leaves me wanting to read more.
Uhtred, who really only wants to return to his family and his rightful home in Bebbanburg (Bamburgh in Northumberland), must weigh his oath to Alfred against various offers and alliances that could make him rich and powerful.
Once again, it's an eventful and compelling read, not least because it's action packed from beginning to end. Uhtred is forced into confronting the Vikings in the London area again and again, with things culminating in one of the most ferocious battles yet written by the author. Each battle is incredibly vi...more
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And I would rather burn till time itself burns out.”