counter create hit Anvil of God - Download Free eBook
Hot Best Seller

Anvil of God

Availability: Ready to download

It is 741. After subduing the pagan religions in the east, halting the march of Islam in the west, and conquering the continent for the Merovingian kings, mayor of the palace Charles the Hammer now wants the throne. Only one thing stands in his way - he's dying. Charles cobbles together a plan to divide the kingdom among his three sons, betroth his daughter to a Lombard pri It is 741. After subduing the pagan religions in the east, halting the march of Islam in the west, and conquering the continent for the Merovingian kings, mayor of the palace Charles the Hammer now wants the throne. Only one thing stands in his way - he's dying. Charles cobbles together a plan to divide the kingdom among his three sons, betroth his daughter to a Lombard prince to secure his southern border, and keep the Church unified behind them through his friend Bishop Boniface. Despite his best efforts, the only thing to reign after Charles's death is chaos. His daughter has no intention of marrying anyone, let alone a Lombard prince. His two eldest sons question the rights of their younger pagan stepbrother, and the Church demands a steep price for their support. Son battles son, Christianity battles paganism, and Charles's daughter flees his court for an enemy's love. Based on a true story, Anvil of God is a whirlwind of love, honor, sacrifice, and betrayal that follows a bereaved family's relentless quest for power and destiny.


Compare

It is 741. After subduing the pagan religions in the east, halting the march of Islam in the west, and conquering the continent for the Merovingian kings, mayor of the palace Charles the Hammer now wants the throne. Only one thing stands in his way - he's dying. Charles cobbles together a plan to divide the kingdom among his three sons, betroth his daughter to a Lombard pri It is 741. After subduing the pagan religions in the east, halting the march of Islam in the west, and conquering the continent for the Merovingian kings, mayor of the palace Charles the Hammer now wants the throne. Only one thing stands in his way - he's dying. Charles cobbles together a plan to divide the kingdom among his three sons, betroth his daughter to a Lombard prince to secure his southern border, and keep the Church unified behind them through his friend Bishop Boniface. Despite his best efforts, the only thing to reign after Charles's death is chaos. His daughter has no intention of marrying anyone, let alone a Lombard prince. His two eldest sons question the rights of their younger pagan stepbrother, and the Church demands a steep price for their support. Son battles son, Christianity battles paganism, and Charles's daughter flees his court for an enemy's love. Based on a true story, Anvil of God is a whirlwind of love, honor, sacrifice, and betrayal that follows a bereaved family's relentless quest for power and destiny.

30 review for Anvil of God

  1. 4 out of 5

    Bob

    Objectively I don't think this is too horrible of a book, but I rate books subjectively, based on how much I personally enjoyed them. This one I only made it about a third of the way through before I decided this is not for me. This was for 3 reasons: 1) the sex. I can take a little bit of sex, but so far there's been at least one lurid sex scene in every single chapter. At least nothing's been rape or BDSM or anything terrible but honestly, I can do without it. 2) the paganism. I understand that Objectively I don't think this is too horrible of a book, but I rate books subjectively, based on how much I personally enjoyed them. This one I only made it about a third of the way through before I decided this is not for me. This was for 3 reasons: 1) the sex. I can take a little bit of sex, but so far there's been at least one lurid sex scene in every single chapter. At least nothing's been rape or BDSM or anything terrible but honestly, I can do without it. 2) the paganism. I understand that the Christian/pagan tension was a big deal at this time in history, so I'm not against including it as a major factor in the book. What I was rapidly tiring of, though, was how blatant the author's leanings are given away. None of the Christians in the book are anything except ruthless, grasping killjoys, and all of the pagans are the normal people. We're given a lengthly, loving description of a pagan fertility rite, but the Christian prayer gathering is treated with universal contempt by everyone, even the ones attending, and seen as worthless and boring. Bleah. It was getting positively annoying. 3) the contextualization. I hate historical fiction writers who write as if their characters are plucked out of modern Western culture and plopped down into a different world. People in the dark ages had an very different set of values and a wholly different worldview than we do today, and I wasn't getting that vibe from the book at all. It makes it far less believable considering how I understand the world.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Historical Fiction

    Find this and other reviews at: http://flashlightcommentary.blogspot.... Imagine you're under water; swimming low, along the bottom of a pool. You push off the floor, slowly rising till you break the surface and you take that first breath, filling your lungs to capacity. That's how I felt finishing Anvil of God... like I'd been released from another world. Honestly, this is the kind of book I dream about stumbling over. An engaging narrative, J Boyce Gleason's startling debut brought 741 brillian Find this and other reviews at: http://flashlightcommentary.blogspot.... Imagine you're under water; swimming low, along the bottom of a pool. You push off the floor, slowly rising till you break the surface and you take that first breath, filling your lungs to capacity. That's how I felt finishing Anvil of God... like I'd been released from another world. Honestly, this is the kind of book I dream about stumbling over. An engaging narrative, J Boyce Gleason's startling debut brought 741 brilliantly to life, capturing my imagination in its recreation of an all but forgotten empire, drawing me into a whirlwind of intrigue that, even after days after reading, refuses to let me go. For the record, my knowledge of this period was and to some extent remains overwhelmingly vague. I'm not exaggerating, before reading this piece I couldn't have differentiated Charles Martel from Charles Garnier which leads me to one of the more remarkable aspects of this book. Gleason has a deep comprehension of and obvious affinity for this particular era, but he doesn't take that familiarity for granted. Exercising great care, he carefully reconstructs the political playing field, fleshing it out with vividly atmospheric descriptions and imaginative details that make the narrative easy to follow, even for those encountering the material for the first time. Like most political epics, Anvil of God incorporates an extensive cast, but here again, Gleason exhibits a flawless mastery of his craft. Charles, Carloman, Pippin, Gripho, Boniface, Childbrand, Liutbrand, Odilo, Bradius, Sunni, Trudi, Greta, Bretrada... each has an individual personality, distinct emotional makeup and unique motivation. Independently dynamic, Gleason's characters are universally well-rounded, multidimensional and authentic. Fast-paced and fluid, Gleason hits the ground running, but what amazed me is how deftly he was able to sustain that momentum for all four hundred plus pages of the book. I'd intended to read Anvil of God a few chapters at a time, but quickly realized doing so was a practical impossibility. A compulsively addicting fiction, I simply couldn't put it down. Heartfelt romance, religious conflict, convoluted family dynamics, contrasting gender roles, political power struggles, violently gritty battlefield combat, Gleason fits it all in a single exciting volume. A spellbinding tale of valor, rivalry, and ambition, Anvil of God isn't to be missed.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Tom S

    Got bored with this one.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jane

    My rating would actually be a 3.5 if this were available. This book was strange but compelling. I knew very little about the time period --Charles Martel [The Hammer], 8th century France. Mr. Gleason has certainly done his historical research, creating an interesting story, much based on true events. I received this book as a Goodreads giveaway. Charles Martel plans to divide his kingdom among his three sons--two Christian, one pagan and plans to marry off his daughter, Trudi, to the son of the My rating would actually be a 3.5 if this were available. This book was strange but compelling. I knew very little about the time period --Charles Martel [The Hammer], 8th century France. Mr. Gleason has certainly done his historical research, creating an interesting story, much based on true events. I received this book as a Goodreads giveaway. Charles Martel plans to divide his kingdom among his three sons--two Christian, one pagan and plans to marry off his daughter, Trudi, to the son of the Lombard king, in a political marriage. Trudi is not feminine; she practices manly pursuits, such as learning swordsmanship, dressed in Saracen armor. [Charles had halted the advance of Islam into Europe at the Battle of Tours.] She has her father's strength and even some of his looks. Charles dies, and his plans begin to go awry. The three sons fight over the kingdom; Trudi escapes with one brother, Pippin, to the east. She plans to go to a man she loves in Bavaria, to escape the hated marriage. On the way, Trudi is abducted... The city of Laon is controlled by the youngest brother, Gripho, the pagan. His oldest brother, Carloman, lays siege to it. The escape, abduction with its aftermath, and siege are very exciting. I couldn't put the book down. This was a good escapist read, and I did learn a little history from the Author's Note. It was very complete and informative. Trudi is an unusual and unforgettable character. The fights and battle scenes were well done. I did not like the use of modernisms in the novel, e.g., girlfriend, fiancée. Some of the dialogue was simplistic. One description of a pagan ritual and most of the time whenever sex was involved were too graphic for my taste and made me uncomfortable. I thought the cover was bizarre. Perhaps it represented a pagan 'sybil' who appears in the story. Recommended.

  5. 5 out of 5

    The Lit Bitch

    4.5 stars. This book took me entirely by surprise. I was expecting a book full of religious rhetoric about the early barbaric invasions. But I was thrilled to discover this book was so much more than that! Obviously it has a lot of religious references but it’s not necessarily dense or thick with it. The novel is more about politics and rights to the throne than religion. There aren’t many fiction books that are set in the Carolingian era which falls around the barbarian invasions. I thought this b 4.5 stars. This book took me entirely by surprise. I was expecting a book full of religious rhetoric about the early barbaric invasions. But I was thrilled to discover this book was so much more than that! Obviously it has a lot of religious references but it’s not necessarily dense or thick with it. The novel is more about politics and rights to the throne than religion. There aren’t many fiction books that are set in the Carolingian era which falls around the barbarian invasions. I thought this book was both exciting and educational! It contained lots of history and facts while at the same time incorporating a fictional story that had a little something for everyone–romance, political intrigue, and action. I loved how Gleason brought all of these elements together. If you like Medieval type books with lots of political plotting and deception like A Song of Ice and Fire series (minus the magic and fantasy etc) or The Pillars of the Earth then this is right up your alley! The writing style was fast paced and directly to the point. The novel opened with a lot of action and right away jumped into the story line. I loved that I didn’t have to read a lot of back story to get into things. All of the language was modern enough for the average reader to follow along with but still held onto it’s authenticity for the era. At times it was a little simplistic but what it lacked in complex linguistics, the story made up for in it’s characters. I guarantee you haven’t read anything like this novel before. It’s set in a unique period in history and is full of war, love, and politics. It’s a lovely and refreshing blend of a bunch of different genres. I am eagerly awaiting the next installment in this series! See my full review here

  6. 4 out of 5

    The FountainPenDiva, Old school geek chick and lover of teddy bears

    Once more in the mood for a historical fiction novel, I'd started this and couldn't stop. Eighth century France is a time period I'm not too familiar with so this was a fascinating read. I've heard of Charles Martel and the Merovingian Kings, but never read too much about them. Will definitely make up for that. Game of Thrones has nothing on this tale of the real-life disaster of naming three sons as heirs to different parts of a vast and blood-stained empire. Add to this volatile mix an ambitio Once more in the mood for a historical fiction novel, I'd started this and couldn't stop. Eighth century France is a time period I'm not too familiar with so this was a fascinating read. I've heard of Charles Martel and the Merovingian Kings, but never read too much about them. Will definitely make up for that. Game of Thrones has nothing on this tale of the real-life disaster of naming three sons as heirs to different parts of a vast and blood-stained empire. Add to this volatile mix an ambitious church eager to spread its doctrine (as well as concentrate power on itself) and it's a recipe for war. The characters were fully realized. Yes, I loved the female characters who were more than window dressing, especially the intrepid Trudi who decided that she wasn't going to wed the man her father decided for her. Talk about leading a potential bridegroom on a not-so-merry chase through Europe. She was a really tough woman, dealing with the elements, hunger, the threats of rape and murder as a woman alone in the wilderness. Of course there's the clash between paganism and Christianity. So, waiting for the second book.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Richard Myers

    Great! A fantastic account of the age of Charles Martel. The characters are very well described and the action is nonstop. I can’t wait for the next book to come out! I recommend this book to everyone.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Michelle Stockard Miller

    I was so glad to be offered this book for review because I have not read any historical fiction surrounding the Carolingian dynasty. I am pleased to say that Anvil of God was a terrific introduction to the era. Gleason's impeccably researched novel takes us into the heart of the time period and tells us an exciting and interesting tale of a time when Christianity was striving to quash Paganism and warfare was a constant. Struck with the reality that he is dying, Charles Martel (Charles the Hammer I was so glad to be offered this book for review because I have not read any historical fiction surrounding the Carolingian dynasty. I am pleased to say that Anvil of God was a terrific introduction to the era. Gleason's impeccably researched novel takes us into the heart of the time period and tells us an exciting and interesting tale of a time when Christianity was striving to quash Paganism and warfare was a constant. Struck with the reality that he is dying, Charles Martel (Charles the Hammer) devises a plan for his sons to rule the kingdom and to make an advantageous marriage for his daughter to achieve political stability. However, his offspring are not so ready to cooperate. Having different views on religion and wanting to choose marriage for love over political advantage, his sons and daughter have designs on choosing their own paths in life. What we are left with is a story of the bonds of family and what factors can cause those bonds to break. Gleason has written a fantastic historical novel. This being the first book in The Carolingian Chronicles, I am looking forward to the next book.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Star

    J. Boyce Gleason’s first book of The Carolingian Chronicles ‘Anvil of God’ brings the birth of the Carolingian dynasty to epic life. It is 741 AD and Charles Martel’s life is coming to an end and he must divide his holdings among his three sons. His daughter, Hiltrude, has been promised to the Lombard prince, but she turns to her stepmother to regain her own power. Charles the Hammer’s eldest son is a pawn of the Church, his middle son would like to spend more time with his girlfriend, and his y J. Boyce Gleason’s first book of The Carolingian Chronicles ‘Anvil of God’ brings the birth of the Carolingian dynasty to epic life. It is 741 AD and Charles Martel’s life is coming to an end and he must divide his holdings among his three sons. His daughter, Hiltrude, has been promised to the Lombard prince, but she turns to her stepmother to regain her own power. Charles the Hammer’s eldest son is a pawn of the Church, his middle son would like to spend more time with his girlfriend, and his youngest son, secretly pagan like his mother, is looking forward to claim his father’s power. Mr. Gleason’s book breathes life into historical figures and the religiopolitical struggle of this time period. He easily shows readers the unrest and fragility of Europe in this time period through stellar characters, intense emotion, and game-changing action. Graphic, bloody, and sinfully entertaining, ‘Anvil of God’ will be a treat for any lover of historical fiction. The Carolingian Chronicles series: Anvil of God (1)

  10. 5 out of 5

    Sam

    When I was first notified that I had won this book I can honestly say I wondered why I even requested it. I mean a period piece that takes place in AD 741. Not the kind of book I read. Then it arrived and I decided now or never and I could not put it down. When I had to put it down all I could think of was the book. It is a mix of fact and fiction. The characters are so well written they just jump off the pages. My favorite characters are Sunni, Trudi amd Pippin. It amazed me how easy it was to When I was first notified that I had won this book I can honestly say I wondered why I even requested it. I mean a period piece that takes place in AD 741. Not the kind of book I read. Then it arrived and I decided now or never and I could not put it down. When I had to put it down all I could think of was the book. It is a mix of fact and fiction. The characters are so well written they just jump off the pages. My favorite characters are Sunni, Trudi amd Pippin. It amazed me how easy it was to get lost in the story and also get emotionally involved in it. There is something for everyone in it and never a dull momment. I admit that there are a couple of places that actually had me tearing up. I received this from LibraryThing Members Giveaway and even if you don't like period pieces please give this book a try. You won't regret it. I can't wait for book 2.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Cortney

    If you love historical fiction that is well researched, and you have the brains to manage the complexities of the EARLY medieval period, this is a great book for you. There are a handful of modernisms that will be jarring to the hardcore history buff, (truly just a handful of words that have a later etymological origin) but honestly I think this is a failing of the editor more than the author, since they are few and far between. There is almost ZERO historical fiction set in the Carolingian era If you love historical fiction that is well researched, and you have the brains to manage the complexities of the EARLY medieval period, this is a great book for you. There are a handful of modernisms that will be jarring to the hardcore history buff, (truly just a handful of words that have a later etymological origin) but honestly I think this is a failing of the editor more than the author, since they are few and far between. There is almost ZERO historical fiction set in the Carolingian era from Charles Martel (Charlemagne's Grandfather) through the death of the grandsons and grandnephew of Charlemagne and the end of the Carolingian Era--probably because there are so few accessible historical sources from the time period. As I am researching the era for my own series of novels, I can attest to the fact that Mr. Gleason had his work cut out for him, and for the most part did a wonderful job of writing an interesting and relatively fast-paced story which followed the historical facts as well as anyone can. I am beyond shocked (nay, annoyed) at the number of people who read this book and had their delicate little sensibilities offended by the sex scenes. But it is a testament to the type of person who would blindly pick up a book about Charlemagne (or his ancestors)--likely people who think of him as the father of Christianity in Europe, and believe that to be a good thing (rather than a genocidal war lord intent on forcing his law and his religion on generations of unwilling nations who were quite literally given the choice of conversion or the sword--he was NOT a nice dude, folks, not by any standard.) To those people I say: OK BOOMER. Get over your puritanical bullshit--people have sex, and people like sex, and sex is an important piece of truly understanding the internal workings of a character's mind. The author didn't write this stuff to titillate the scores of unsatisfied housewives reviewing books here. He meticulously crafted moments that were salient and critical to the understanding of the characters. This is a sweeping political epic with dozens of historically named characters and locations and battles and if you are not the type who can keep these things straight in your head, then you may struggle to really connect to the story. If you had trouble with Game of Thrones, this will not be a beachy summer read for you. Personally I thought there was a decent balance of historical information and plot/action/character development. I could have done with far more historical detail, but then again, I am aware that makes me an outlier, most of the time. As a woman, I appreciate the author's attempts to build out his female characters as real humans with complex emotions and motivations. I do think he still, of necessity, writes women only as well as a man can, and that is fully forgivable. Just like women authors so often create men like James Fraser McKenzie of Outlander (who could absolutely never be the real life warrior poet we all wish he was), so too must there be limitations on how well any man can write any woman. But Gleason certainly does as good a job as any.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Tena

    I won this in a GOODREADS giveaway! #GoodreadsGiveaway

  13. 5 out of 5

    Bookworm

    Taking place during the European Middle Ages, Anvil of God is a historical novel that is rich in historical details. The story revolves around a few main historical figures, one being Charles the Hammer, who ruled as Mayor of the Palace. Charles wants to rule the throne, but he is dying. Before his death he divides his territories between his three sons and arranges a marriage for his daughter, Trudi, in order to secure one of his borders. The problem is that Trudi has fallen in love and decides Taking place during the European Middle Ages, Anvil of God is a historical novel that is rich in historical details. The story revolves around a few main historical figures, one being Charles the Hammer, who ruled as Mayor of the Palace. Charles wants to rule the throne, but he is dying. Before his death he divides his territories between his three sons and arranges a marriage for his daughter, Trudi, in order to secure one of his borders. The problem is that Trudi has fallen in love and decides she will run away with her lover and after Charles dies, his three sons begin to fight over the lands. This is my first time reading about this time period and about these people. I found this era to be fascinating. I really liked Trudi's character. She was strong, never conforming to what was expected of her. One of her favorite pastimes was sword fighting with the men. She delivers a great line at the end of the book that had me cheering for her. I felt like Trudi took center stage here. Her step-mother Sunni was another likable character. The relationship between these two felt real. Sunni is pagan and practices the rituals in secret. Her beloved Charles knows some of this. Speaking of Charles, I found the scenes between him and Sunni to be heartfelt. Upon researching Charles the Hammer, I found out that he is grandfather of Charlemagne. The scenes on the battlefield were action packed and I found this one to be a fast paced read despite it being over 400 pages long. This is one of those novels that you can curl up with on a cold winter night. As far as religion goes, Muslim expansion, Christians and Pagans are all woven in nicely into the plot. I found myself totally immersed in the storyline. It is obvious that author J. Boyce Gleason did his research. I also liked the author's notes at the end of the novel where he discusses the central characters and some of the events in the book. I liked this because I have no clue about this time period, so it was nice to see what was true and what was not. It really is fascinating when you read about events that were going on during these ancient times. This one has everything a good historical should; drama, romance, action, religion, war and politics. It was so nicely written and I highly recommend it to fans of historical fiction. Anvil of God is first in a series. I am curious to read the next installment. disclaimer: This review is my honest opinion. I did not receive any type of compensation for reading and reviewing this book. While I receive free books from publishers and authors, such as this one, I am under no obligation to write a positive review.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Patty

    Anvil of God takes place in a period of history about which I know very little. The time period is pre-Charlemagne and the plot deals with many issues from the fight between Christians and pagans, brothers warring on each other, power, lust and love. It begins with Charles Martel (Charlemagne's grandfather) and his second wife, Sunni. Charles is committed to working with the church and relies on his childhood friend who has risen far in its hierarchy - Boniface - but he does not make his decisio Anvil of God takes place in a period of history about which I know very little. The time period is pre-Charlemagne and the plot deals with many issues from the fight between Christians and pagans, brothers warring on each other, power, lust and love. It begins with Charles Martel (Charlemagne's grandfather) and his second wife, Sunni. Charles is committed to working with the church and relies on his childhood friend who has risen far in its hierarchy - Boniface - but he does not make his decisions solely based on what is best for the church. Sunni has ostensibly joined the church but she has not left her pagan beliefs behind. Charles feels his death looming so he divides the kingdom up between his three sons; Carloman and Pippin from his first marriage and Gripho from his marriage to Sunni. He has a ceremony where he makes his nobles swear fealty to the boys for after his death but we all know how those promises play out in time. A subplot has Charles' daughter Trudi refusing to marry the man of Charles' choice and running away to marry for love. All I can write about this book is - WHERE IS THE SECOND VOLUME AND CAN I HAVE IT RIGHT NOW. RIGHT NOW! I found myself lost in this 8th century world populated with fascinating and diverse characters and I was so very sorry when I turned the last page. I am thrilled that this is Book One because that means there will be more to come. Mr. Gleason writes a thrilling story taking what little is left to history and spinning it into a page turning look into the world before the countries we consider Europe were drawn. There are really 7 main charaters, Charles Martel, his three sons, Sunni and Charles' daughter Trudi. There are several very strong secondary characters and they are all distinctly developed and unique unto themselves. It took me a little to sort them out at the start but once I did I had a very hard time putting this book down. It carries some tough scenes as there are battles, scourgings, rape, pillage and all that you would expect in these times. These scenes are handled in a straightforward manner and not exploited. The weakest subplot I do feel was Trudi's but apparently there is some basis in history for it. Mr. Gleason leaves his reader with a detailed Author's Note which I appreciated. It is always a pleasure for me to find one at the end of a historical novel so I can glean fact from fiction. I will anxiously await the next installment of The Carolingian Chronicles.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Meg - A Bookish Affair

    4.5 stars. Every once in awhile, I come across a book where when I read it, I start thinking about just how many the book would appeal to. "Anvil of God" is one of those books that is going to appeal to so many different kinds of readers. This book has great characters. It has great historical detail. There is adventure, battles, and romance all set against the backdrop of a quickly changing world. I really enjoyed this family saga. This is the first book in a planned series and you can definite 4.5 stars. Every once in awhile, I come across a book where when I read it, I start thinking about just how many the book would appeal to. "Anvil of God" is one of those books that is going to appeal to so many different kinds of readers. This book has great characters. It has great historical detail. There is adventure, battles, and romance all set against the backdrop of a quickly changing world. I really enjoyed this family saga. This is the first book in a planned series and you can definitely count me among those waiting for the next book in the series. The book focuses on a family. We get to know each member of the family very well, especially the mother and the siblings. I really appreciated how the author was able to focus on so many characters but really allow the reader to know what makes each member tick, since they are all very different. I think a lot of times that can be very difficult to do in a book that has a lot of different main characters. I especially liked reading about Trudi, the daughter, and Carloman, the uber religious son. Trudi was especially fascinating to me. Although her lot in life is really to be married off to the person that her father, Charles, sees as the most advantageous partner, Trudi has a different idea. You have to admire someone who still goes after their own heart when the odds are so stacked up against them. I love historical fiction but very little of the historical fiction that I read takes place prior to about 1400. I always love when I can find a book that takes me a little bit out of my comfort zone. This book takes place during 741. I really appreciated how the author was able to use tons and tons of detail to bring the saga surrounding the family at the center of this book. There is a little something for so many different readers here!!! Definitely a good read!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Linda

    *Sexual Content Warning* The author's writing mechanics were fine. Any error made did not hinder my reading. The water, land and moral battles were too many and too long. The pagan rituals were too protracted. There was too much sexual content. Charlemagne has interested me for a long time. This book is about his ancestry, a good place to start learning about Charlemagne and French history, wouldn't you say? The story takes place in the eighth century when religions, sects and cults were in flux i *Sexual Content Warning* The author's writing mechanics were fine. Any error made did not hinder my reading. The water, land and moral battles were too many and too long. The pagan rituals were too protracted. There was too much sexual content. Charlemagne has interested me for a long time. This book is about his ancestry, a good place to start learning about Charlemagne and French history, wouldn't you say? The story takes place in the eighth century when religions, sects and cults were in flux in Europe. The land area included parts of present day Germany, France and Italy. Charles Martel left clear directions as to how his property would be divided upon his death. Well, that did not go according to plan without war. Carloman, the eldest son of Charles, was portrayed as a religious fanatic, but the degree of fanaticism is debatable. Sunni, Charles' second wife, was pagan and introduced her stepdaughter, Trudi, into the pagan rituals. Again, the author may have taken a bit of literary license. Peppin, Charles second son whose name has several spellings, was my favorite character. That is the truth. There is one scene that some might find funny and others find ridiculous. A man of the cloth was having anal intercourse with a young boy when another man of the cloth walked in upon the action to deliver a message to the first man of the cloth. Neither man was deterred in his purpose. For my tastes, the author wrote about sex too often regardless of the situation or the party or parties involved. (Yes, I did say 'party.' ) Other than some distasteful moments that affected me and a fourth star, I liked the book. In his Author's Notes, the author did state that the book was a work of fiction and apologized for any offense a reader might take. Thank you, Mr. Gleason, for a good read.

  17. 5 out of 5

    AJourneyWithoutMap

    The first book in the Carolingian Chronicles series, Anvil of God is a sweeping tale set in 8th century France. Mystical, full of suspense, action and family intrigues, J. Boyce Gleason weaves a fascinating tale much of which is based on true events. Historical fiction aficionados are in for a great treat ruffling through the pages of this compelling book. In Anvil of God, Charles Martel, the Hammer, is dying and wanted to ensure the continuation of his legacy by dividing his kingdom among his th The first book in the Carolingian Chronicles series, Anvil of God is a sweeping tale set in 8th century France. Mystical, full of suspense, action and family intrigues, J. Boyce Gleason weaves a fascinating tale much of which is based on true events. Historical fiction aficionados are in for a great treat ruffling through the pages of this compelling book. In Anvil of God, Charles Martel, the Hammer, is dying and wanted to ensure the continuation of his legacy by dividing his kingdom among his three sons: Carloman, Pippin, and Gripho. The older two brothers are Christians while the youngest is a pagan. But his wish remained a pipedream. Consequent upon his death, what seemed to be a farsighted moved proved disastrous as a fierce battle broke out among the sons for consolidation of power. Charles Martel also had assured the hands of his only daughter, Hiltrude known as Trudi, in marriage to a Lombard prince to secure his borders. But she has a mind of her own. Sunnichild, the widow of Charles Martel, also has her own ideas. When the fight ensued among his brothers, Trudi, along with her second brother, Pippin, flees to the east in Bavaria. But the plan went horribly wrong as she is abducted on the way. Gripho, the youngest brother takes control of the city of Laon. In a bid to stamp his authority and dominion, the oldest brother, Carloman, lays siege to it. Anarchy and confusion is reigning in the kingdom. J. Boyce Gleason writes a truly well-researched book peopled by memorable and unforgettable characters. The author has painted vivid pictures of the battles, virtually taking you to the scene, and making the characters come alive. The book is simply fantastic and immensely enjoyable.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Donna

    8th century Carolingian history is unfamiliar to me. I'm glad I read this amazing story. Gleason did his research. The story is unforgettable. Basically, Charles the Hammer dies and leaves his vast empire to his three sons. His has promised his daughter in marriage to a man she wouldn't chose as a husband. Trudi is her name, in my opinion, she was the best of The Hammer's four children. She was a sword yielding, fighting individual- don't mess with her. The three sons, two Christian and one paga 8th century Carolingian history is unfamiliar to me. I'm glad I read this amazing story. Gleason did his research. The story is unforgettable. Basically, Charles the Hammer dies and leaves his vast empire to his three sons. His has promised his daughter in marriage to a man she wouldn't chose as a husband. Trudi is her name, in my opinion, she was the best of The Hammer's four children. She was a sword yielding, fighting individual- don't mess with her. The three sons, two Christian and one pagan, are fascinating characters. Pippin, is my favorite. Pippin and Trudi are two characters who will grab your heart. As a reader, I became emotionally involved in their lives. In short, this book will just pull you into the plot. It is action packed from the beginning to the end. For those of you unfamiliar with Charles "The Hammer" Martel, he is the grandfather of Charlemagne. He started the Carolingian empire in what is now France. I cannot wait for book two! I look forward to reading more about these characters. For those of you who love reading period pieces, ie- The Tudors, The Borgias- you will love this series.!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Jenny Byers

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. ****SPOILERS***** This is just my notes to keep track of what I am reading.... Just started, first time with this author. So far is keeping my interest. Pagan woman of status married to a Franco ruler. Family intrigue, heirs wanting power, factions to be stabilized across the land holdings, early Church in the picture with much much power over the rulers and his family (except his pagan wife). Finished it, glad I stayed with it. There was a point or two that I got a little tired of the finely det ****SPOILERS***** This is just my notes to keep track of what I am reading.... Just started, first time with this author. So far is keeping my interest. Pagan woman of status married to a Franco ruler. Family intrigue, heirs wanting power, factions to be stabilized across the land holdings, early Church in the picture with much much power over the rulers and his family (except his pagan wife). Finished it, glad I stayed with it. There was a point or two that I got a little tired of the finely detailed fight and battle scenes, but the rest of the story did make up for that. I do wonder what happens next, I'll look up the next book to see if the author follows some of these characters (I'm curious about the women's lives), or if the next book starts up with a new set of people. I see that he hasn't published the next book yet- "Wheel of the Fates". On his website, the author states that as of September 2019, he didn't have a publishing deal yet. He also says that the book does continue the story of some of the original characters. So that's good!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Timothy Lunney

    Anvil of God is raw, lusty and violent, probably like the real Carolingians about whom this historical novel was written. If you are a prissy academic, or someone who is put-off by graphic sex and violence, then you might not enjoy this novel. If on the other hand you can appreciate historical fiction that is lush and vivid, then you'll love this book. I'll admit that I was at at first shocked by the first graphic sex scene and was tempted to put this book aside. That would have been a mistake. Anvil of God is raw, lusty and violent, probably like the real Carolingians about whom this historical novel was written. If you are a prissy academic, or someone who is put-off by graphic sex and violence, then you might not enjoy this novel. If on the other hand you can appreciate historical fiction that is lush and vivid, then you'll love this book. I'll admit that I was at at first shocked by the first graphic sex scene and was tempted to put this book aside. That would have been a mistake. After reading the entire book, I concluded that the sex and violence was not at all gratuitous, but integral to this tale of power, intrigue and conquest. Anvil of God is a graphic novel, historical novel and action/adventure novel all in one fast-paced, exciting read. It's rare to find a real historical novelist that can deliver both scholarship and excitement.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Shelley

    An exciting historical novel depicting the struggles for power in Western Europe during the 700's. Filled with murder, betrayal, pitting brother against brother, pagan against Christian, this book is based on a detailed research of the rise of Charles Martel and his lineage and the part they played in the formation of the countries in this area. I look forward to the next installment of this saga. An exciting historical novel depicting the struggles for power in Western Europe during the 700's. Filled with murder, betrayal, pitting brother against brother, pagan against Christian, this book is based on a detailed research of the rise of Charles Martel and his lineage and the part they played in the formation of the countries in this area. I look forward to the next installment of this saga.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Cindy

    Fast paced, with realistic dialogue and plenty of action, this historical drama was a pleasure to read. It takes a special author to write historical fiction that draws you in and leaves you wanting more. I've been waiting years for the sequel! Cindy Burke Author: Intimate Space: A Galactic Adventure https://www.smashwords.com/books/view... Fast paced, with realistic dialogue and plenty of action, this historical drama was a pleasure to read. It takes a special author to write historical fiction that draws you in and leaves you wanting more. I've been waiting years for the sequel! Cindy Burke Author: Intimate Space: A Galactic Adventure https://www.smashwords.com/books/view...

  23. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Ellis

    it's been awhile since I read such a good book that every time I got up through the night (many times MS issues) the only thing I wanted to do was read! I loved the story soo much! It kept me on the edge of my seat until the last sentence!! Wish I knew when the next one was coming out!! it's been awhile since I read such a good book that every time I got up through the night (many times MS issues) the only thing I wanted to do was read! I loved the story soo much! It kept me on the edge of my seat until the last sentence!! Wish I knew when the next one was coming out!!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Matt Bracy

    A very fun read about a time and place that are meaningful to me. Well constructed with engaging characters. My only criticism is that the sex scenes are too graphic and frequent, rising to gratuitousness. Nonetheless I’m looking forward to the sequel very much.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Emily (Heinlen) Davis

    Well-written and very nicely fleshed out, but not my type of story. I tend to shy away from books where you need a genealogical diagram and map to follow what's going on. Well-written and very nicely fleshed out, but not my type of story. I tend to shy away from books where you need a genealogical diagram and map to follow what's going on.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Pat

    Good to see this time period brought to life. Looking forward to the next installment.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Missy Nelson

    Very good! Really enjoyed it. Different kind of book for me. I would recommend this book. I won this book on Good reads thank you

  28. 4 out of 5

    f

    Riveting Historical fiction is my favorite read. I couldn’t put this book down. So good. I highly recommend to anyone interested in this time period.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Tony Parsons

    740 AD. Charles “the Hammer” Martel (father, mayor of palace), Carloman (Charles eldest son), & Pippin II (Charles’ 2nd. son, Herstal, mayor of palace) were ganging up on Maurontus (rebel leader), & his men. 741 AD Quierzy, Narbonne. Charles returning from battle met with Bishop Boniface. Hiltrude “Trudi” (Charles’ daughter) a tomboy wanted to be beside her father in battle. She had trained beginning at a young age & was quite capable. But she is also quite mature & is the marrying age. But only to 740 AD. Charles “the Hammer” Martel (father, mayor of palace), Carloman (Charles eldest son), & Pippin II (Charles’ 2nd. son, Herstal, mayor of palace) were ganging up on Maurontus (rebel leader), & his men. 741 AD Quierzy, Narbonne. Charles returning from battle met with Bishop Boniface. Hiltrude “Trudi” (Charles’ daughter) a tomboy wanted to be beside her father in battle. She had trained beginning at a young age & was quite capable. But she is also quite mature & is the marrying age. But only to a noble. King Liutbrand (elderly), Aistulf (Liutbrand’s son), & Odilo (Bavaria) will be considered eligible suitors. Will Bishop Boniface make sure the Church supports Gripho (Charles’ son Carloman’s ½ brother) in his political endeavors? Carlomen was very comfortable around the widow Lady Hèlenè. After another battle Drogo listened to Sunni. Would he ever see her & Gripho again? What were the Knights of Christ upset with Carloman about? What happened to Heden? What happened to Petr (Heden’s son)? What will become of Trudi? Warning: This book is for adults only & contains extreme violent or graphic adult content or profanity &/or sexually explicit scenarios. It may be offensive to some readers. I did not receive any type of compensation for reading & reviewing this book. While I receive free books from publishers & authors, I am under no obligation to write a positive review. Only an honest one. A very awesome book cover, great font & writing style. Wow, a very well written historical fiction book. It was very easy for me to read/follow from start/finish & never a dull moment. There were no grammar/typo errors, nor any repetitive or out of line sequence sentences. Lots of exciting scenarios, with several twists/turns & a great set of unique characters to keep track of. This could also make another great 8th. Century historical fiction movie, an animated cartoon, or better yet a mini TV series. One of my top 25 for 2018. A very easy rating of 5 stars. Thank you for the free Goodreads; Making Connections; iUniverse LLC; Autographed; paperback book Tony Parsons MSW (Washburn)

  30. 4 out of 5

    Deb

    The main drawback to this rather fascinating historical novel is the number of first person narrators. Changing point of view so often is distracting, but it does highlight the chaos of the era. Set in 8th century France and Germany, the story follows the family of Charles Martel after his victory over the Moors at Tours and his subsequent death. He tries to leave each of his three sons an equal say in the ruling of the western European empire he has fashioned, but they fall out with one another The main drawback to this rather fascinating historical novel is the number of first person narrators. Changing point of view so often is distracting, but it does highlight the chaos of the era. Set in 8th century France and Germany, the story follows the family of Charles Martel after his victory over the Moors at Tours and his subsequent death. He tries to leave each of his three sons an equal say in the ruling of the western European empire he has fashioned, but they fall out with one another almost immediately. Each son, their rebellious pagan sister and their father's second wife, who is mother to the youngest son and stepmother to the other three, narrates part of the story, as do the daughter's lover, Bishop Boniface (St. Boniface-to-be) and at least two of the rebels chieftans. The reader's head spins a bit - it is hard to discern which characters to root for - but the dichotomy of burgeoning Christianity and pervasive pagan tradition is clear. It was interesting to dip into this tie period, but I'm not sure I have the patience for the second volume. I wish Charlemagne would hurry up and be born!

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.