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Publisher : Thomas Nelson Release Date : 3. Bestselling author Stephen R. Lawhead's Song of Albion Trilogy now available in one volume! Expecting little more than a weekend diversion, Lewis accidently crosses through a mystical gateway where two worlds meet: into the time-between-times, as the ancient Celts called it. And into the heart of a collision between good and evil that's been raging since long before Lewis was born. The Silver Hand The great king is dead and his kingdom lies in ruins.

This is the first book of a trilogy; and like Tolkien's Lord of the Rings books which he originally didn't want to separate into three volumes --that was the publisher's idea , the Song of Albion books basically form a unit that should be read and considered together. An evangelical, Lawhead displays the influence of C. Lewis in places in his writing; the Christian symbolism in the last volume, The Endless Knot , is particularly clear. But his fantasy vision is his own, heavily influenced as This is the first book of a trilogy; and like Tolkien's Lord of the Rings books which he originally didn't want to separate into three volumes --that was the publisher's idea , the Song of Albion books basically form a unit that should be read and considered together.

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But his fantasy vision is his own, heavily influenced as well by Celtic mythology American born, he moved to England to have better facilities for studying Celtic history and culture , and his fantasy world is supposedly the Celtic Otherworld, with a recreated Bronze Age Celtic culture whose elements of primitive monotheism he stresses more so than they were in actual pagan Celtic society.

He makes very creative and original use of different features of Celtic lore, such as the Silver Hand which provides the title of the second volume , the endless kettle, Beltane fires, etc. Lawhead is a capable stylist, skilled at creating absorbing plots, characters, and atmosphere; he does that here, and as expected from an evangelical writer there are no problems of bad language or sexual content in the trilogy. It is, however, very violent a trait more marked in the last two books , with a good deal of grisly killing, massacres, blinding and beheading, often with the innocent, and characters the reader likes and cares about, on the receiving end of it.

This is a reflection of a clear-eyed awareness of the capacities and results of human evil, squarely faced; but it's definitely not for the squeamish. So what is The Paradise War? Epic then, epic now, it is one of the first things I remember my mother reading to me when I was young, allowing me to visualize the might and magic of this well-woven portal into Celtic adventure and Otherwordly feats.

Beleaguered by the shift from Oxford academia and the more intellectual-style of prose such dictates, Stephen R. Lawhead's first book in The Song of Albion Trilogy finds its legs firmly rooted in grit and gore and snow and song, reminding me that anyon So what is The Paradise War? Lawhead's first book in The Song of Albion Trilogy finds its legs firmly rooted in grit and gore and snow and song, reminding me that anyone can be a true hero so long as they walk the endless knot-maze path buried down in their heart. This being the first time I've read the book since becoming a published author and writing Celtic fantasies of my own, the effect is profound and surreal, if not subtle and subliminal, as The Paradise War thrills those hungry for fantasy's most famous tropes on the surface, but more than that, stirs a sense of longing and belonging deep within, which upon reading, cannot be denied.

As the story at its core is an exaltation and an exhortation of the divinity of the arts and the sublime nature of the search for the song and the spirit of song, the essence of life and the music of ancient bloods and other tongues, I cannot help but be moved to tears that such a seed was sown within my own knot-maze path to becoming an author, the effects of which will forever spread like a single sonorous note, or a ripple upon an endless ocean.

Such is the way of the fabric writers weave, the books readers read, and the breath humans breathe.

Review: The Song of Albion by Stephen Lawhead

Recommended for lovers of classic fantasy. Buddy read with Jackie Boyster. Sep 27, Lindsey Rey rated it liked it Shelves: , fantasy. I really liked the first pages or so and thought the last pages were pretty boring.

Song of Albion, Book 1: The Paradise War

Basically I didn't like the actual portal fantasy section. I think I would enjoy it if Stephen Lawhead wrote a contemporary novel, like a psychological thriller or literary fiction or something along those lines, but this wasn't for me. Mar 27, Sara Price.

Solid 4 stars, great read! Can't wait to pick up the next one! Nov 06, Wendes rated it did not like it Shelves: fantasy.


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Although I truly admire the language and prose Stephen Lawhead uses in his novel, the book totally lacked all elements of a good story. There was no plausible plotline or storyline of events that I could follow. All the events were seamlessly unrelated, random and discordant. There was no greater plot, no quest or manner in which the characters followed.

There was no goal, no objective, hardly a conflict or an antagonist to defeat. Lord Nudd who I suppose was supposed to be the "villain" of the Although I truly admire the language and prose Stephen Lawhead uses in his novel, the book totally lacked all elements of a good story. Lord Nudd who I suppose was supposed to be the "villain" of the story had no character, no purpose, or no goal in what he did.

The characters were not developed and the attempts to do so fell a long way off the mark. Many of the characters annoyed me, especially Simon, Tegid, and Meldron which is pretty much all the characters there were in the book. Their personalities were not defined enough so that their random outbursts and statements made no sense and had no standing. Prince Meldorn who was initially a kind and valiant Prince all of a sudden turned into some sort of usurper and greedy power hungry noble.

Simon who was carefree and adventerous suddenly became the instigator of all things evil in Albion. Tegid was a major pessimistic bard who annoyed me with half his attempts of bringer a downer on everything. Lewis' character or whatever his name is, really was not developed enough for me to be annoyed at.

He had no personality, and after reading something pages I would be hard pressed to find one adjective to describe him. All in all, I felt the book had potential to be a lot better, but sadly, that was not the case.

Really enjoyable. Shelves: fantasy , way-cool , adventure , , favorites. The first in a trilogy, The Paradise War follows the amazing and fantastic adventure of a young college student by the name of Lewis Gillies. When he follows his friend on an sudden and unlikely urge to explore the strange appearance of a long extinct beast in Scotland, he is shocked when his friend disappears inside a cairn and does not return.

It is only when he attempts to follow Simon that he understands why. Albion is where he finds himself. It is the Otherworld, and he is thrust into it so The first in a trilogy, The Paradise War follows the amazing and fantastic adventure of a young college student by the name of Lewis Gillies. It is the Otherworld, and he is thrust into it so quickly and violently that he doesn't even have time to protest the series of events that lead to his warrior training and the events that will follow.

Lewis is in Albion, a land so steeped in Celtic myth, lore, legend, and culture that the novel resonates with this fantastic framework and thrills the reader with their own discovery of it. Lewis comes to love Albion so well that the thought of returning to the drab, gray, meaningless life that he left behind him makes him sick. How could a person desire to take a shadow of a thing over the reality? He comes to realize, though, that the presence of strangers has brought a new influence in to the ancient ways and traditions of the country, and that it is steadily bringing about the downfall of the world.

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Simon is a changed man, and his greedy words of dissent whispered into the right ear causes waves that cannot be stopped. Lewis realizes that he must prevent anything else from taking place, and though it grieves his heart, he tries to force Simon back to their own world, only to be met with surprise. This book is my introduction to the works of Stephen Lawhead, and I must say that I am very impressed. He has created a rich and colorful world that so thoroughly held me captive in a way that books have not done for a while.

I fell in love with the beautiful descriptions, the wonderful lore that made the skillful foundation for the work, and the very characters themselves caught at my mind and are still clinging there. I personally loved The Paradise War and can't wait to finish the second book in the series, The Silver Hand , although I would probably not recommend the series for younger teens and below. At the very least I find the ancient history and mythology fascinating. View 2 comments. Aug 21, Margaret Chind rated it it was ok Shelves: sc-fi-fantasy , thomas-nelson , sent-to-kindle , own , netgalley-expired.

I must admit I did return this to the library without finishing it.