Enoch's Deviceby Joseph Finley
Nearly a thousand years after the birth of Christ, when all Europe fears that the world will soon end, a young Irish monk, Brother Ciarán, discovers an ominous warning hidden in the illuminations of a religious tome. The cryptic prophecy speaks of Enoch's device, an angelic weapon with the power to prevent the coming apocalypse. But a heretic-hunting bishop has arrived at the monastery, willing to kill to ensure the device is never found.
Pursued by the bishop's men and supernatural forces, Ciarán and his freethinking mentor journey to the heart of France in search of the device. There, they rescue the Lady Alais, a noblewoman accused of witchcraft because she holds a key to the prophecy. Together, the trio must race across Europe to locate the device, which has left clues of its passage through history. But time is running out, and if they don't find it soon, all that they love could perish at the End of Days.
Enoch's Device is a fast-paced medieval adventure steeped in history, mythology, and mysteries from a dark and magical past.
- TaraStone Press
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.89(d)
Meet the Author
Joseph Finley is a writer of historical fantasy fiction. He lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with his wife, daughter, and two rescue dogs. He also posts regularly at Fresh-scraped Vellum (fresh-scrapedvellum.blogspot.com), a blog devoted to historical and fantasy fiction. God saw fit to make him Irish, at least in part, so he comes honestly by his fondness for the Irish and their medieval monks. Enoch's Device is his debut novel.
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Since historical fantasy fiction is not my typical genre, I honestly wasn't sure what to expect when starting Enoch's Device. What I found was a thoroughly researched, fast paced, entertaining read! From the first few pages, I was hooked. It starts out as a traditional historical fiction (because of the 10th century monks, it reminded me of "Pillars of the Earth"), but along with the main character, Ciaran, you soon realize that things are not always what they seem. Monks, Biblical mystery, myths and legends, and even a minor love storyline--this book really had it all! It's a wonderful stand-alone novel, but also sets up for a sequel/series!
Ciarán was a content young monk living in Derry, Ireland in 997 A.D. until his quiet world came crashing down around him. His mentor, D¿nall has been accused of being a heretic and possessing an evil book that the Church wants. Faced with the reality that D¿nall may in fact be involved in sorcery, Ciarán must decide if he will trust D¿nall or turn him in. Things are further complicated when Ciarán discovers that he may play a role in a prophecy that is hidden in the book that D¿nall is keeping. Together Ciarán and D¿nall are going to have use their wits and the help of strangers as they travel across Europe trying to decipher the ancient texts that the Church has been hiding if they want to stop an evil that threatens the world’s very existence. Enoch’s Device is a historical fiction novel that combines action, adventure, romance and fantasy elements to create an epic tale. The reader is instantly pulled into the life of a monk in 998 A.D. when political unrest and the battle for power between church and state created a chaotic climate where one wrong look could lead you onto a pyre. My hat goes off to author Joseph Finley for all of the time he invested into researching not only the habits of monks thousands of years ago, but also other religions of that time and historical events which allowed him to create an authentic story line. Finley was so careful with his efforts to stay true to the social mores that even his metaphors and slang reflected the time period. There are a lot of strong themes in this book, but one of my favorite themes was destiny. While it’s common in quest style stories for the hero to accept his fate, Finley allowed his characters to choose to go down their destined path. The reader gets to watch as the characters battle with their choices and accept the consequences of their decisions. These scenes added to realism of the story and allowed me to connect more deeply with the characters. Enoch’s Device has a little something for everyone, making it a great book for book clubs or to just share amongst friends. Either way, I would encourage you to join the adventure.
Ireland, the year 997 AD. The monks at the local monastery watch in awe as a ship arrives from France, carrying a host of armed men and the bishop of Blois, a man called Ademar. Among the monks is a young man called Ciaran, and he is shocked to hear why the Franks have arrived: Ciaran’s friend and guardian Donall stands accused of witchcraft and heresy. This marks the beginning of a fast-paced adventure that takes in half of Europe, encompassing magic, fae, religion, legends, demons, the offspring of fallen angels and much, much more, yet it never becomes muddled. History, fantasy and existing legends – sometimes religious, sometimes not – are interwoven seamlessly, and the whole makes for a wonderful ride that often has you on the edge of your seat. The heroes are likeable, the villains suitably loathsome, and the story is never boring. I’m still not entirely sure how plausible it is for a tenth-century monk to be as enlightened and to have as much knowledge as Donall, but his background is plausibly written, so I was happy to accept it. The only real gripe I have is that the ending was rather abrupt, but other than that I really, thoroughly enjoyed this book. I’d definitely recommend it.
Hooked within the first few pages! Reviewed by Marty Shaw for Reader Views (2/13) I’ll be honest and admit I wasn’t a fan of Dan Brown’s “The DaVinci Code,” so I was a little hesitant when I flipped open “Enoch’s Device” by Joseph Finley, imagining a dry mystery buried within a description-heavy historical setting, but I was hooked within the first few pages and that other novel was quickly forgotten. The number one difference between Finley’s debut novel and any other historical fiction book out there is that the story offers much more than a mystery to be solved. Real magic exists within these pages and it’s woven into the story so well that you will be wondering exactly where fact turns to fiction. In the world of “Enoch’s Device,” the Fae (more popularly known as faeries) are real, and a group of monks have discovered how to use their ancient power. Unfortunately, they’ve also discovered that life on Earth is meant to end every thousand years. The prophecy has been averted in the past but nobody has any idea of where to find the talisman that can stop the destruction this time. The main character is a young Irish monk named Ciaran, and he’s an enjoyable character to follow around. I was especially intrigued by the excellent balancing act the author performed with the character. Ciaran spends a lot of time during the first half of the book repeating the philosophy to himself that monks aren’t warriors, trying desperately to not get involved in the adventure that begins unfolding around him. However, fate keeps tossing him headfirst into the action and he eventually comes to terms with how to be both a warrior and a monk. What’s so impressive about this is that Ciaran never undergoes any type of radical change that makes you wonder if you’re still reading the same character. He doesn’t go to bed one night as a docile monk and wake up the next morning as a battle-ready warrior. The hot-blooded Irish lad’s transformation is slow and evolves naturally, so that when he heeds the call to battle and steps solidly into the role of hero it’s both expected and surprising at the same time. Every good fantasy adventure requires an old and wise mentor to teach the young and brash newbie, and Brother Donall handles that role very well, earning a spot as my second favorite character. In addition to the people that populate the story, the setting itself is a powerful character within the book. You’ll easily imagine yourself standing on the grassy plains of Ireland and feel the salty spray of the ocean against your face as demons attack the ship you’re sailing on. The locations, the experiences, and the time period itself come to life with the author’s talented use of words. If you enjoy tales of magic and adventure that are perfectly blended with reality and history, “Enoch’s Device” by Joseph Finley will be an exciting read for you.
I found this work of historical fiction and fantasy to be quite well researched and very readable. The reader will visit last 10th Century Derry, Paris, Potiers, and Cordoba in a quest to save the world.