THE BOOKS

 

In early medieval Europe, Viking marauders are pouring down from the north. Steppe riders threaten from the East and Islamic invaders are surging up from the South. After his father is slain defending their home, a little Irish boy and his young mother are taken in bondage to Norse-controlled Dublin. His mother is later murdered by a jealous Viking matriarch and the orphan is beaten and starved for years before being rescued by Irish warriors on the eve of the millennium, January 1st, 1000 A.D.

 

Several years later, as more Viking invaders from across Europe storm into Ireland, her aging king, Brian Boru, must somehow protect his nation. Nordic sagas tell us an obscure and unlikely hero arises to crush the enemy and save his people. Wolf the Quarrelsome leaps into history as a nightmare to the Norse and avenger for the Celts. This is Wolf’s story spanning 15 years and leading up to an underrated and arguably the most decisive battle of the Middle Ages. It is also the story of a young woman who develops a network of female spies across Ireland and Britannia and two young Irish men who lead medieval special operations forces.

"Despite only recently being released, there has been a lot of love for this sweeping Irish/Viking saga since its publication last month, with a mega melange of media coverage, including feature articles, author interviews and glowing reviews. In most cases, and though understandable in an already-over-saturated marketplace, that kind of hype speaks more to the muscle of a marketing team and, perhaps, less to the merit of the actual work. Thankfully, that isn’t the case here, as Howley twists and turns tradition into an epic tale of power, fortune, family and love. While Wolf of Clontarf doesn’t break any new storytelling ground, it is told better than most in its genre with well-crafted characters, absorbing dialogue, a minimum of detailing, and a soaring narrative arc."

                                                                   Celtic Life International Book Review

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