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Byzantium [Format Kindle]

Stephen R. Lawhead

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Présentation de l'éditeur

Born to rule

Although born to rule, Aidan lives as a scribe in a remote Irish monastery on the far, wild edge of Christendom. Secure in work, contemplation, and dreams of the wider world, a miracle bursts into Aidan's quiet life. He is chosen to accompany a small band of monks on a quest to the farthest eastern reaches of the known world, to the fabled city of Byzantium, where they are to present a beautiful and costly hand-illuminated manuscript, the Book of Kells, to the Emperor of all Christendom.

Thus begins an expedition by sea and over land, as Aidan becomes, by turns, a warrior and a sailor, a slave and a spy, a Viking and a Saracen, and finally, a man. He sees more of the world than most men of his time, becoming an ambassador to kings and an intimate of Byzantium's fabled Golden Court. And finally this valiant Irish monk faces the greatest trial that can confront any man in any age: commanding his own Destiny.

Biographie de l'auteur

Stephen R. Lawhead is an internationally acclaimed author of mythic history and imaginative fiction. His works include Byzantium and the series The Pendragon Cycle, The Celtic Crusades, and The Song of Albion. Lawhead makes his home in Austria with his wife.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 2283 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 872 pages
  • Pagination - ISBN de l'édition imprimée de référence : 0061057541
  • Editeur : HarperCollins e-books (13 octobre 2009)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
  • X-Ray :
  • Word Wise: Activé
  • Composition améliorée: Activé
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°217.228 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)

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Commentaires en ligne

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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.6 étoiles sur 5  188 commentaires
97 internautes sur 99 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Best Lawhead book to date! 3 septembre 1999
Par Donovan D. Mattole - Publié sur Amazon.com
Now that I've read The Iron Lance and Avalon, I thought I'd stop in and read the reviews on Byzantium (I previously reviewed this book on July 27, 1997, but since they are now refering to me only as "a reader" I felt entitled to say something else). I was surprised by a few (to say the least). I honestly think Byzantium is Lawhead's best book ever. I loved Avalon, but it still didn't pass Byzantium as my all time favorite. If you like historical fiction or just want an excellent story with extremely well developed characters - this is the book for you. The important thing is to read the book with an open heart for the powerful message that is portrayed. It is a true story of redemption. I think one of the reasons I loved the book so much is I felt a kinship with the main character, Aidan, unlike I have with any other fictional character. After you read this, read the Celtic Crusade books, beginning with The Iron Lance. These continue the story and you'll see what happened to Byzantium a few hundred years later. Happy reading!
39 internautes sur 41 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Amazing 18 janvier 2007
Par Steven R. McEvoy - Publié sur Amazon.com
At nearly 900 pages this book is amazing in many ways. First, you read that much in such a short time, for once you have picked it up you will find yourself unable to put it down. This book is a fictional retelling of St. Aidan's life. St. Paul's Cathedral in London, Ontario has a St. Aidan's Chapel that has a beautiful set of tapestries depicting the life of this servant of God. St. Aidan died in 651 after serving at home in Iona, among the Gauls - first as a slave and then as a Bishop, and he even visited Byzantium in his lifetime, and the seat of the Eastern Roman Empire.

I was familiar with this church and with the artwork depicting Aidan's life. Yet it was not until almost halfway through the book, that I slapped my forehead and said 'Aidan the monk = St. Aidan'. The book is so craft- fully written that one easily becomes so lost in the story that it did not even click that I knew about this tale.

Lawhead is a master wordsmith, who is most know for his Arthurian legend series, or his Celtic series, yet this stand-alone novel is every bit as much worth the time and attention as his other better-known works. This book was a departure for Lawhead, in that it was written from the beginning as a stand-alone. Therefore, if you do not like getting sucked into a series, where you need to read 4 or 5 books to get the whole story, this book is a great starting point in Lawhead's works.

The story in this novel is powerful and moving. It is the story of a young man who was taken as a slave and later returned as a Minister, and eventually as a Bishop. It is the story of the spread of Christendom, and the story of service. Once you begin you will not be able to put this book down. So be warned!
25 internautes sur 28 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 One of the best novels I've ever read 26 janvier 2000
Par Timotheos Josephus - Publié sur Amazon.com
This was the first Stephen Lawhead book I'd ever read. How could I not have known about him earlier?
"Byzantium" has everything you could want in a story. Suspense, drama, love, heartbreak, despair, elation, and action. The main character is so well developed that it feels like you're experiencing his emotions right along with him.
If you enjoy fantasy or any sort of medieval historical fiction, then you MUST read this book. I cannot imagine that you would be disappointed.
11 internautes sur 12 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Excellent. Abyssmal. Epic. Full of Wonder. 28 décembre 2003
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Poche|Achat vérifié
I read Taliesin and Merlin, both by Lawhead well over 10 years ago .. and feel like an idiot that I no longer own those books. I have to admit that 2 things sold this book for me. The cover illustration and the synopsis on the back. Okay, 3 things. I like stories based around historical events or during historical periods. Byzantium. Wow.
Portions of this book bring to mind, The Lord of the Rings as well as other epic novels based on that particular genre of storytelling.
From the very beginning, we are introduced to the way of life and limited life experience of the Aiden, princeling turned priest. His simple lifestyle may appeal to many of us, even though we outwardly deny the fact. The changes that he goes through as his travels land him in a new situation are wonderful to see. The characters we come into contact with are interesting and as the story progresses, they begin to take on more dimension, which is unfortunately lacking so much in many commercialized stories today, whether in print or on film.
The historical references are captivating, from the Irish monastery, Viking society, Byzantine politics, and Islamic culture. Each of these mark a milestone in the metamorphasis of Aiden and ultimately epitomize the awakening most of us go through/never do/or wish we did.
This is a book that should some day be brought to the screen. I have to admit that as I came to the final pages, I felt some regret and bittersweet understanding that while the end of the road is near, all things require closure. Adventures reach their conclusion. We each go our own way, some we will never see again. However, there will always be the memory of the experience and in this case you need not look further than your own bookshelf. BUY this book. EXPERIENCE it. And keep it for those times when you wish to rekindle that which once burned brightly, if even only for a moment.
Okay. I liked the story.
30 internautes sur 37 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 An Action Tale 13 septembre 2002
Par Jeffrey Leach - Publié sur Amazon.com
Historical fiction is often a hit or miss affair. When it hits (as it does with Tolstoy's "War and Peace"), it takes the reader back to another time while teaching valuable lessons about humanity. When it misses, it ends up looking a lot like Stephen Lawhead's "Byzantium." This isn't to say that "Byzantium" is a bad book; it is certainly entertaining as an action packed yarn with a cast of characters longer than your arm. But "Byzantium" fails as a historical tale because it really doesn't reflect the time period in which the story takes place.
Set in the 10th century during the reign of Byzantine emperor Basil II, "Byzantium" is a detailed account of the travels of Aidan, an Irish monk charged with delivering a special copy of the New Testament to the city of Constantinople. Aidan sets out with a group of monks on this mission, nervous about discharging his duties but excited about having a chance to see the world. Aidan does get to see the world, and he sees it in ways that he never imagined. Right at the start of the mission, the boat Aidan is sailing on is waylaid by a band of pirates. Aidan is taken prisoner, made a slave, and begins a roundabout trip to Constantinople. Along the way, Aidan falls in with a Viking expedition, travels through Kiev, visits Constantinople for an audience with Basil, acts as a spy for the Byzantines, is captured by Arabs, learns several languages, is almost executed in a slave mine, nearly marries a beautiful woman, and loses his faith (in no particular order).
All of these situations are well drawn and fairly exciting (especially the sea battle towards the end of the book, a battle that hums with energy and tension). Throughout each of these situations, Aidan must rely on his wits and various abilities to stay alive and hope to complete the mission he set out on. Lawhead certainly has the ability to create intriguing set pieces, whether it is the inside of a Danish feast hall, an Arab palace, or the city of Constantinople. This makes the book a fun read.
Regrettably, Lawhead fails to create convincing connections with the 10th century European world. Outside of a brief encounter with Basil II, this story could easily have been set in any time frame between the 6th and 14th century. The historical elements drop into the background of the story for large sections of the book. In other words, the book just doesn't speak from its time as many other books in the genre do (think about a book such as "The Name of the Rose," for instance. That book creates some medieval atmosphere!). Perhaps this comes from a fear of making errors about the time frame, or a lack of hard research into the period. This book should be categorized as action/adventure rather than historical fiction.
The character development is lacking as well. It is understandable that all of the characters could not be developed due to the large number of people populating the pages of this story. The problem comes when major characters show a disturbing shallowness. Aidan, the main character and narrator, isn't given much to do beyond observing and surviving his surroundings. His crisis of faith, a cliché of epic proportions found in almost any book in which a priest is a character, isn't enough to create a memorable character. Other characters are reduced to mere cardboard cutouts.
Still, books like "Byzantium" do serve an important purpose. It is a relaxing book, one that doesn't require much thought to get through. This can be soothing after plowing through literature, history, philosophy, or any other heavy reads. Its length may scare off some, but "Byzantium" provides a good dose of action for those who crave such things
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