The Year of the Warriorby Lars Walker
GOD WILLS IT!
It all started with a Viking raid: When he is captured and forced into slavery, Aillil the Irishman must pretend to be a priest or die. Better to be a high-value priest than a low-value corpse, he thinks, and so it happens that a failed novitiate (he loved women too well) is taken up by Norway's first Christian lord, Erling Skjalgsson to bring… See more details below
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GOD WILLS IT!
It all started with a Viking raid: When he is captured and forced into slavery, Aillil the Irishman must pretend to be a priest or die. Better to be a high-value priest than a low-value corpse, he thinks, and so it happens that a failed novitiate (he loved women too well) is taken up by Norway's first Christian lord, Erling Skjalgsson to bring the Word to his people.
Ironically, though ""Father""Aillil is as phony as a three-dollar psalm, he and he alone must convert a fiercely pagan people to the gentle teachings of Christ—and they don't want to hear about it. Nor do their ""gods,"" who are all too real, and all too liable to do something horrible to those disturbing their divine peace.
It's going to take a miracle for Aillil to succeed, or even survive, but fortunately God (the one true God, not those pagan demon creatures) is on his side. . . .
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Tired of the same old same old in heroic fantasy/swords-and-sorcery? Try Lars Walker's books. Great stuff in the tradition of Poul Andersen and other writers from the days of Unknown magazine -- but not rehashed. Walker knows his Norse sources well, like the late Poul A. (and, like him, deploys them without being pedantic) & -- you'll see -- knows how to make a reader keep turning pages. Don't miss this one. I am truly eager for more of Erling's saga.
This is Lars Walker, the author, telling you about my own book. I'm writing my Erling Skjalgsson books on a schedule -- each appears exactly 1000 years after the real dates of the events described in the book. So THE YEAR OF THE WARRIOR is a fantasy story set in actual history -- Norway at the first millennium. It was a time of tremendous change -- a new religion and a new political order were coming to power. THE YEAR OF THE WARRIOR tells the story of Father Aillil, priest to Erling Skjalgsson of Sola, one of the most powerful men in Norway. Aillil is a reluctant missionary, and a priest only by accident -- or God's will, depending on your viewpoint. There's a certain danger in writing about Vikings. As much as past historians may have shortchanged the Vikings because they were pagans fighting Christians, modern historians glorify them (ironically for the same reason). I have an opinion of my own, and I employ it shamelessly. I think paganism is a bad thing (or at least an inferior thing) which may be followed by good people. And I think Christianity is a good thing which may be followed by bad people. This presents enough conflict and ambivalence for a whole series of books -- which, by the way, I intend to write. It should be noted that THE YEAR OF THE WARRIOR is a double volume, including the previously published work ERLING'S WORD, in a slightly revised version. I hope this is acceptable to those who've already read EW. The price is about the same you'd have paid for a single volume.