Anvil of God
by J. Boyce Gleason
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 has one final ambition-the throne. Only one thing stands in his way-he is 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.
About ANVIL OF GOD
Publication Date: July 26, 2013
About the Author:
After a 25-year career in crisis management and public affairs, J. Boyce Gleason began writing historical fiction and is publishing his first novel ANVIL OF GOD, Book One of the Carolingian Chronicles. With an AB in history from Dartmouth College, Gleason brings a strong understanding of the past to his historical fiction. He is married, has three sons and lives in Virginia.
For more information please visit www.jboycegleason.com.
I am always a reader for a series and so I was immediately drawn to Anvil of God as it was first with more to come. I know very little about the history of this time period but just to give the book a frame of reference the father of Anvil of God, Charles "The Hammer" Martel, was the grandfather of Charlemagne.
In many ways, Anvil of God, is the story of a family. The older son who overcompensates to immolate his father, the youngest son who is directionless, careless and a bit of a brat, a spoiled only daughter who finds her strength and the middle son who seems to be the voice of reason.
The trouble starts when Charles dies willing his vast empire to his three sons, in thirds. Never a good idea and really it begs the question of what he was thinking. Was it the power of his wife, Sunni, trying to protect the youngest son, her own? Was he trying to be fair? Charles Martel, surely not. Perhaps, he was curious as to what would happen; that follows his personality more aptly.
There is a lot of war and battle descriptions in Anvil of God which I thought would bore me to tears, but it is the strength of the characters that make the story. Each and every one has a story and Gleason is able to give you a glimpse into their character without over describing them. This expert character development is the strength of the novel; it is one of those that you can't put down until you discover what has happened.
Anvil of God is packed with history but also intrigue, love and hate, sacrifice and selfishness, death and rebirth, war and peace. It is guaranteed to hold you in its grip to the last sentence and then have you waiting for book two.
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