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Dublin (The Dublin Saga, #1)
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Dublin (The Dublin Saga #1)

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3.83 of 5 stars 3.83  ·  rating details  ·  7,134 ratings  ·  644 reviews
Edward Rutherfurd's great Irish epic reveals the story of the people of Ireland through the focal point of the island's capital city. The epic begins in pre-Christian Ireland during the reign of the fierce and powerful High Kings at Tara, with the tale of two lovers, the princely Conall and the ravishing Deirdre, whose travails echo the ancient Celtic legend of Cuchulainn. ...more
Paperback, 832 pages
Published May 5th 2005 (first published March 2004)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jehan
Ok, so I have to preface this review by admiting that I did my studies in Irish history so I'm bound to be a bit biased. Having said that, reading this book was like reviewing years worth of notes but compressed in an extremely enjoyable one thousand pages (ok, maybe compressed isn't the right word).

Reaching back to Celtic times, Rutherford traces the beginnings of familys that exist today, weaving his stories from generation to generation. As he moves from one family to another, his characters
...more
Paul Clayton
Historical novels can be simply human dramas set in historical times, or they can be human dramas woven into historical events, to bring those events to life. We can learn a great deal from the latter, and I feel like I did with Edward Rutherfurd’s The Princes of Ireland. As an American with 100 percent Irish ancestry (McLaughlin) on my mother’s side, and, probably 100 percent English, or mixed English/Irish ancestry on my father’s side (Clayton), I have often wondered about the long running and ...more
Sammy
Let me just start off with saying that you need to be awake and alert when reading this book. There are many times that the story is full of action and plot, thus making it very engaging. But there are just as equal an amount of times when it dives into ancient politics and slows to a crawl where you begin to struggle to keep your eyes open. The book is still very enjoyable though.

It does get confusing, because while there are times when Rutherfurd realizes the reader may not be familiar with th
...more
Irishcoda
After posting a poll about whether I should finish the book, I thought about the pros and ons of each side. TThe advice I got was very similar to what I was thinking. The first half of it had interested and engaged me--maybe I would get interested again. I don't like to spend $15 on a book and then not finish it. At the same time, though, I'd struggled through 100 pages and was hopelessly bored. I didn't think I'd want to pick up the book again, not later, not no how.

Since I did read almost all
...more
Becca
Very interesting take on Irish history from the viewpoint of a few fictional families through the years. I felt it was a bit slow and drawn out in some places, but the interactions and intertwining between the families we're watching through the years and how they react to what are now major historical people and events are incredibly interesting to read and imagine.
Jacquie South
This was nowhere near as good as Sarum or London, though it was still enjoyable and educational. While Sarum and London really described history so vividly through the stories of the characters, this book relied a lot more on pages and pages of pure historical description and facts, which definately got tedious at times. What was so wonderful about Sarum and London was the way he made history come to life through his characters, the way their fortunes rose and fell through the ages, and the way ...more
"Aubri"/Lisa
Nov 23, 2007 "Aubri"/Lisa rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: History buffs
I enjoy Rutherfurd's stories of European cities because you get the history of the city with a rich saga of interesting characters. These books, I find, are very easy reads despite their tome-like appearance and weighty subject matter - complex political intrigues and long-forgotten mysteries are made clear and understandable. This first volume covers Ireland - and more specifically Dublin - from ancient times to when the English finally get a foothold (stranglehold?!) on the island. The second ...more
Davytron
I'm sorry, I gave up on this one. Dear lord it goes on forever.

I was a bit disappointed that until the point where I stopped, there were no explicitly homosexual characters. Not a one in eleven centuries, y'all. Like, the single mention of it was when a monk character was being cruised by some of the other "sinful monks" who were "going down a dark path." Please! Using homo monks as a means of emphasizing how noble and chaste a character is is SO 1960s and just sick.

Otherwise, if you want to r
...more
Letitia
Atrocious saga that never allows the reader opportunity to connect with any of the characters before leaping another century to yet another boring epoque, in which the truly adventurous, exciting bits are merely dryly narrated as a history text. If I wanted to read a text book, I would! Give me a thrilling novel, for goodness' sake!
Karen maslen
From the internationally bestselling author of London and Sarum -- a magnificent epic about love and war, family life and political intrigue in Ireland over the course of seventeen centuries. Like the novels of James Michener, The Princes of Ireland brilliantly interweaves engrossing fiction and well-researched fact to capture the essence of a place.

Edward Rutherfurd has introduced millions of readers to the human dramas that are the lifeblood of history. From his first bestseller, Sarum, to the
...more
Bart Breen
Formulaic but not bad

This is my first read of Edward Rutherford and based on several other reviews of this work, it appears that measured against the standard of his previous work, this one is perhaps not as powerful.

Not having the benefit of those previous reads, I come at this perhaps from a different point of view.

As an amateur historian and genealogist, I came to this work expecting it to give some context and progression toward a better understanding of the history of Ireland and perhaps so
...more
Marlet
It's the second book I read on Ireland. And I'm beginning to fall deeply in love with the country, its culture, and most of all its history.

I think, it's my first historical fiction and I'm still in awe on how the author magnificently stitched scenes of everyday life by ordinary people with history.

It's only, and only, sheer hard work.

The book begins with ancient Ireland where people still believe in old gods. From the first chapter, the author already made readers to understand how faithful the
...more
Manu Prasad
An epic novel that’s only one part of Rutherford’s Ireland saga. Starting in AD 430 and ending in AD1533, this book traces the story of Ireland using Dublin as a representative. From Dubh Linn to Dyflin to Dublin.

Through the interwoven stories of six fictional Irish families, we see the transformation of Ireland from the land of druids and Celtic High Kings up to the reign of Henry VIII. The fortunes of these families rise and fall during the Viking invasions, the campaign of Brian Boru, the Eng
...more
Katie
This book was ok. It tells the stories of several Irish families over the course of many generations. The book takes place in the same location of Dublin, tracing the stories through the birth of Celtic Christianity, Viking invasions, English conquering, etc. I loved the historical details--and I especially loved all the references to the area of Dublin, which I've visited. But the book did not have enough development of characters to really hold my attention. His stories of each generation were ...more
Kelley Ross
All I can say after finishing this book is... wow, was that worth it.

The Princes of Ireland is a hefty book, but inside its covers is basically the author's braindump of anything and everything to do with Irish history. Through the use of generational story telling, we as readers experience how various things influenced Ireland. The story is woven together so tightly that Rutherford is able to say a name 200 pages after that particular character's part in the story has ended, and it will still
...more
Sara W
I stopped reading this book in Chapter 7 because I just couldn't take it anymore - it was mostly dull stories with some interesting tidbits thrown in every once in a while.

The beginning of this novel was alright. The best parts of the book for me were the descriptions about that time period in general (the Romans leaving Britain, the Christians slowly making their way over, the druids, etc.). I never really cared for any of the characters. They all seemed pretty flat to me.

This is a problem I h
...more
Velvetink
Dublin: Foundation (2004) (also known in North America as The Princes of Ireland: The Dublin Saga or sometimes simply Dublin) is a novel by Edward Rutherfurd first published in 2004 by Century Hutchinson and then by Seal Books and Doubleday Canada. It is a work of historical fiction and centers around a number of families and their descendants in and around the area of Ireland that is now Dublin. It begins in AD 430 with the love affair of a prince (Conall) and the daughter of an Irish chief (De ...more
Quincy
I picked up this book just before heading out on a vacation to Ireland. This book was so good that the trip itself would not have been as fulfilling without it. Everytime a character went to a specific area, our trip took us there the very next day. I was able to have a background for almost every tour we took and every area we visited. Although many of the characters were completely fictional, their interactions with historical events and historical characters allowed me to see what it may have ...more
English Education
The Princes of Ireland is a glorious and compelling set of fictive chronicles that takes readers through the rich and tumultuous history of Ireland. It starts in the Emeral Isle, 430 BC with a re-creation of the celebrated Cuchulainn myth, by a tragic romance between a homestead-maiden, Dierdre, and a Celtic Warrior, Connall, who becomes offered up as a sacrifice to the Celtic Gods. The story moves to 450 A.D when Pat Rick sets forth his mission, alongside a small Christian settlement, to spread ...more
Jill
Although I loved Sarum and London, I was not so much a fan of this book. It is historically descriptive, and interesting in its characterizations - as all of Rutherfurd's books are - however, I think the known history of Dublin is too sparce for this book to be coherent enough to make it as compelling as the other two. It just doesn't have the historical flow that Rutherfurd's other sagas do.
Michele
My husband & I had a 2-week road trip and wanted an audiobook that we both might enjoy as we have very different tastes in books. I was not in favor of this book but gave in to his request. In the end, I think I might have enjoyed it more than he did although he also did like it and would have rated it about 3 1/2 stars.

The book follows characters, their eventual families and descendents from about the 400s to the 1500s. Their is a lot of history and explanation of historical events, some in
...more
Danielle
This wonderful historical fiction took me back to ancient Celtic Ire, and I fell in love with the families throughout ancient and middle age Ireland. Cannot wait to read book #2.

This is not an easy read. It's 770 pages took me quite a while to finish because it is chock full of history, but presented in a pleasing manner.
Robert
This was my first book on Irish history and an introduction to Irish places and geography. I was impressed with the way the early clans/tribes stuck together and supported each other, appalled at the treachery within families towards the 1400s and 1500s. And especially appalled at the way Henry VIII tried to Anglicize the Irish and their culture; no wonder there are problems today!

I found the character development to be lacking compared to the way Follett developed Tom, Jack and Alina in Pillar
...more
Cheryl
"rom the internationally bestselling author of London and Sarum -- a magnificent epic about love and war, family life and political intrigue in Ireland over the course of seventeen centuries. Like the novels of James Michener, The Princes of Ireland brilliantly interweaves engrossing fiction and well-researched fact to capture the essence of a place."

This was also audio - and since it is historical I played discs more than once - that listening thing in a car bit. I do need to listen to it again
...more
Pamela
I loved it.
Starting in AD445 until HenryV111. It covers some of the political , religious and social history of the people of Dublin with fictional characters as well as known people of each period, like St. Patrick and some of the princes and tribe leaders.

Beth
History and saga all mixed up into one. I don't know that I walked away from this book any wiser about Ireland, I did enjoy the ride, though!
Carla
This is exactly the type of book I like to read. History, romance, scandal, and myth...I am already onto the next one in the series.
Oklee
I bought the unabridged audio-cd's to play during my weekly commutes to pottery lessons in a nearby city. I got much more than I bargained for as I was merely wanting relief from the boredom of the commute. I got an interesting saga based on the history of Ireland. The details were fascinating. I found myself sitting in my driveway multiple times wanting to hear more of the story. The characters were developed and well representative of the era and location. I thoroughly enjoyed every minute and ...more
Chris Lytle
My motivation for tackling this edition of Rutherfurd's Irish opus is an upcoming trip to the Emerald Isle. What a perfect way to gain a sense of Ireland's complex and sweeping history. Rutherfurd certainly has developed a reputation for being able to seamlessly integrate centuries of geopolitical intrigue with the trials and tribulations of everyday family life. Considering this is only Part I of the Dublin Saga, there may be almost too much story to tell.

Skipping from age to age, the broad st
...more
Terry
Both novel and history book combined, this will not be a book for everyone. But I got a good understanding of Irish history, while the story follows several families from AD 430 until 1533. Anything I checked appeared to be accurate, and I found this book helpful for genealogical study as well. The author explains many details about family names. There is a good afterword and pronunciation guide included for reference, but the book was very " readable " regardless. Looking forward to reading the ...more
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Question re Fionnuala Ui Fergusa [spoilers] 1 3 Oct 18, 2014 01:27PM  
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Francis Edward Wintle, best known under his pen name Edward Rutherfurd, was born in the cathedral city of Salisbury. Educated locally, and at the universities of Cambridge, and Stanford, California, he worked in political research, bookselling and publishing. After numerous attempts to write books and plays, he finally abandoned his career in the book trade in 1983, and returned to his childhood h ...more
More about Edward Rutherfurd...

Other Books in the Series

The Dublin Saga (2 books)
  • The Rebels of Ireland (The Dublin Saga, #2)
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