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Brendan

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Overview

This is the story of Saint Brendán the Navigator, whose legendary quest to find the Isle of the Blessed is one of the most remarkable and enduring of early Christian tales.

Among the Irish saints, Brendán the Navigator is second only to Patrick. Founder of several Christian monasteries, he most famously guided a group of monks on a dangerously journey into the unknown vastness of the ocean on a search for Paradise. Based on the medieval Life of Saint Brendán, Morgan Llywelyn's ...

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Brendan

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Overview

This is the story of Saint Brendán the Navigator, whose legendary quest to find the Isle of the Blessed is one of the most remarkable and enduring of early Christian tales.

Among the Irish saints, Brendán the Navigator is second only to Patrick. Founder of several Christian monasteries, he most famously guided a group of monks on a dangerously journey into the unknown vastness of the ocean on a search for Paradise. Based on the medieval Life of Saint Brendán, Morgan Llywelyn's imaginative retelling of the Christian legend of this most remarkable man is a lyrical and surprising feast for the mind and heart. It is a story of truth and transcendence, of inner strength and daily discipline, a story of love and longing, and a story of towering faith. And of course, miracles.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Llywelyn's narrative, laced with fifth-century Irish history and lore, climaxes with a fantastical maritime expedition worthy of Ulysses; her prose is by turns reflective, lyrical, and stalwart, delving into the popular legend with a genuine sense of Brendan's human strengths and frailties.”

Publishers Weekly

“Llywelyn brings to life the complex tribal Celtic society in which Brendan lived and creates some memorable characters. . . . Will please fans of Ireland’s best-known historical novelist and . . . readers who enjoy learning about early Christianity through fiction.”

—Booklist

Publishers Weekly
Veteran historical author Llywelyn retells the colorful life story of revered Irish monastic saint Brendan the Navigator in the form of a personal journal, written by an elderly Brendan, interspersed with third-person glimpses of the “Great Voyage” he undertook with 14 monks to find the fabled “earthly paradise” of the Western Sea, the Isles of Blest. A contemporary of Saint Patrick, Brendan is brought up by Erc, Bishop of Altraighe-Caille, and early on shows an affinity for seafaring. Restless, headstrong, and curious, the monk Brendan embarked on dangerous “peregrinations,” first by land and then by sea, traveling with his pet raven Préachán to establish monasteries throughout Ireland. Llywelyn's narrative, laced with fifth-century Irish history and lore, climaxes with a fantastical maritime expedition worthy of Ulysses; her prose is by turns reflective, lyrical, and stalwart, delving into the popular legend with a genuine sense of Brendan's human strengths and frailties. (Feb.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780812551112
  • Publisher: Tom Doherty Associates
  • Publication date: 2/1/2011
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 384
  • Product dimensions: 4.10 (w) x 6.60 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

MORGAN LLYWELYN lives near Dublin, Ireland.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 7 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(3)

4 Star

(2)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 27, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Not as good as I expected

    This book is okay but not one I will make a part of my personal library. The characters really don't have enough depth to keep you interested in them or what they are doing. It's easy enough to follow but annoying the way the story is told in three different ways: What the main character is currently doing; what he writes in his journal about his voyage and; his memories of his life (other than his journey).

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2012

    A bit of a dissapointment...

    I love all of Ms. Llwelyn's books, however, this one was not as good as most of her others...

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2011

    A Glimpse at Ancient Irish Christianity

    This book is a great retelling of Brendan's life and voyage(s). Brendan has been my patron saint for a while now. I even named my son after him. But I haven't always liked his portrayal in different mediums. But this book gives me a Brendan I can get behind. He's a real person with clay feet, yet he's an idealist and a seeker and a dreamer. He's a mystic and an introvert called to be a leader. The book describes his introversion like this: "Brendan, lonely? I don't think so. He's not a lonely person by nature, only a solitary one. I'm like that. The only time I'm lonely is when I'm in a crowd. That's when I feel separate from others." I haven't heard it described better. A great book that I highly recommend.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 19, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    A Great Retelling of Saint Brendan's Life

    I've wanted to see Stephen Lawhead do a take on Saint Brendan for years now. His blending of historical fiction and Christian mysticism would do wonders with Saint Brendan's life. He hasn't done one, but Morgan Llywelyn hits her take of Brendan's life out of the park. Saint Brendan has been my patron saint for years now, but I've not been happy with his portrayal in most forms I've come across him. He shows up in Beowulf and Grendal (the movie) as a raving madman. I have a kids book about his voyage that I picked up that made a big deal about his sour personality and meanness. That's why I've loved this take on him. Morgan Llywelyn gives me a Brendan I can get behind. He's a leader not by choice but by action. He's more an idealist and dreamer and mystic than anything else and people around him find themselves attracted to his dreams. He's seen by many as a saint, but he has clay feet and is as human as they come. I love that this book takes Brendan's celtic spirituality, his Christianity, and his Irish roots seriously and gives us an amazing life from 6th century Christian Ireland.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 11, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 24, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 16, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews

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