Come Back In Time Years, To The Fierce And Desolate Northern Lands, Where Norsemen Ruled With Ax And Sword A Dying King, A Shocking Death Wish, His Heirs Divided With An Oath Of Blood In This Fast Paced New Novel By The Highly Popular Susan Peek, The Conflict Unfolds Between Magnus Erlendson, A Heroic Young Prince Aflame With The Love Of God, And His Outlawed Cousin Hakon, Who Blames Magnus For His Banishment From Their Kingdom What Follows Is A Tale Of Betrayal And Revenge, Bravery And Forgiveness, As Magnus Seeks To Restore His Father S Vanquished Kingdom To Its Rightful Hands Entertaining And Inspiring From Start To Finish, A Must Read For All Those Who Thrill To Learn The Life Of A Saint We Never Knew Existed The First Book In Susan Peek S Exciting New Series, God S Forgotten Friends Lives Of Little Known Saints


10 thoughts on “Saint Magnus The Last Viking

  1. says:

    dedicated with affection to Carolyn Astfalk and Steven R McEvoy Ladies and gentlemen, this book, and its author have a story, which in my opinion even if it slows down or sorely my opinion on this book is good for Goodreads users to know As everyone will know I am a collector of Catholic writers, and this has been accentuated since I read a book that you are already Catholic, or you should not read Joseph Pearce s Convert Writers in a Time of Unbelief everything Joseph Pearce writes is a masterpiece, but of all the books I ve read to this masterful writer, and biographer, perhaps the book that influenced and marked me the most is this , maybe it s one of my three favorite books The other is a book, which should be reprinted in English, because it is the best novel I ve ever read Bodies and Souls by french writer Maxence van der Meersch This book is than a history of doctors, or the reconciliation story of a father and a son Maybe Maxence van der Meersch is the best French Catholic writer of the 20th century, and it s no exaggeration to say that this is my favorite novel, and that I wish I could be enjoyed by all He left goodreads users, trying to guess what my favorite book is Taking up the thread of the narration The Book of Convertwriters led me to a curious vocation to dedicate myself to the search for Catholic writers, because my great dream is and has always been to read to the best Catholic writers, and Christians in the world This led me to Catholic Writers Guild , and to follow them, and to study their members with great interest Although it wasn t until very recently until I was able to devote myself to reading the works of its different members In Susan Peek s case, what struck me was that she had written a story, or a novel about a character, that i was fascinated by the Latin monarch of Jerusalen Baldwin IV, who suffered from leprosy I had the honor of meeting this wonderful character, thanks to Jan Guillou s second novel The Knight Templar and I remember, it was wonderfully played by Edward Norton and was unsalval, by the way From Ridley Scott s Kingdom of Heaven, along with the always most interesting David Thewlis This interested me greatly, although I have not yet been able to read Susan Peek s novel With all the frustration during the race of seeing how the crusades had been rejected and perhaps the pardonism installed after Vatican II made me feel a great interest in the crusades, but unfortunately there were very few books that I liked from the crusades Since even on the part of Christian writers, he has always presented himself to the Crusaders, like savages, and I rebelled against it Yet I keep thinking, however, that the best novel of the crusades, which I have read has been The Brethren Henry Rider Haggard Yet I am very interested in reading books by these writers Zofia Kossak Szczucka and their tetralogy about their crossed pole boys, and the same I think of Nathan Sadasivan s novels Crown of the world or the novels by Suzanah Rowntree and Helena P Schrader on the subject of crusades is recommended for Goodreads users to read my review of Pablo Martin Prieto s History of crusades had nevertheless had the opportunity to read a book by Susan Peek You know that I have always been very critical of Spanish publishers, because I believe, that they edit very bad books, and also only seek the economic benefit Ignoring, that this can be achieved, also by publishing good books However, the word publishing house had the great success of publishing his San Camilo Lelis novel The Surrender of a Soldier This subject interested me, because I was fascinated by the wonderful film of which for me is one of the best Catholic filmmakers today the Italian Giacomo Campioti, who made a film I prefer paradise dedicated to San Felipe Neri which also comes out in this novel , eye and wanted to confront the Camilo of the novel with which he appeared in the film I must admit, I found the novel touching, and I really liked it Susan Peek had written the novel of a saint as earthly, as you, or I might be my dear user That s what Pamela Marcantel would have defined as the opposite of a plaster saint In fact, it is curious that Susan Peek herself confessed that this novel was thought, as a guide, to make a film, and could have made it LUX Vide, perfectly Some time later Susan Peek, and I met at Goodreads, and empathized, and she told me about some of her projects such as writing a St Anscario novel, or St Boniface She asked me for a favor, too See if I could get him a publishing house, to edit this novel in Spanish, and although I, and my friend Manuel Alfonseca Alfonseca especially him we actually wrote to the Word publishinghouse, to see if they wanted to republish this novel, but because of changes in direction, and other things unfortunately rejected our offer However Mrs Peek edited it personally, and she took out this novel in Spanish, and told me if she wanted to read it It takes a long time to attend to your request, because I am a fierce enemy of the eBook, and to shop on the Internet it makes me very afraid However, thanks to my sister I was able to get this wonderful book It was as you could say a birthday present Since it was bought for those dates However, thanks to my sister I was able to get this wonderful book It was as you could say a birthday present Since it was bought for those dates When I had the book in my hands I was fascinated by several things First lyceded Ann Peek, then Susan Peek s prologue, as the purpose of it had been to rescue the forgotten Saints from oblivion, and one thing that fascinated me was Susan Peek s praise for her friend and partner Theresa Linden which leads me to become one of my next goals What I really liked about the novel San Magnus The last viking was that brilliantly Mrs Peek reproduced the sagas, and the cold and cruel legalism of the Vikings The saint was not entirely unknown For in his interesting novel The Pirate Sir Walter Scott mentioned St Magnus every two by three In a perfect fusion in which They merged Nordics, and Scots, and cohabited Christianity, and paganism I found out after reading the novel that George McCkay Brown Magnus Something I didn t know, and I didn t know One question we must ask ourselves before dissecting Susan Peek s magnificent novel is whether Christianity destroys the spirit of the wonderful Nordic sagas, and my opinion It s just that on the contrary they improve them greatly Let us remember three Christian writers, who wrote sagas The anonymous writer of the Beowulf imbued with both Christianity and paganism, Snorri Sturluson father of the new Edda, who was a bishop Icelandic Ari the scholar We even see Christian sagas such as Yngvar the Traveler whose protagonists I am already travelers, and in which King Yaroslav is mentioned It should be remembered, that already Oleg Yaroslav s brother was a Christian, and then it was Yaroslav converted by the Byzantines this is told in the Russian film broadcast by Four Vikings, whose viewing I recommend We see as in the saga of Hrolf Kraki beautifully recounted by Poul Anderson We see how kings, and the Christian bishop give their permission, to tell a pagan story to the pagan woman that count, to extract a healthy moral and what to say about writers such as Sigrid Undset, Haldor Laxness, or Mika Waltari Some of his novels set in the Nordic world can be considered sagas On this topic I recommend reading my review of A Boy of Good Metty I admit, that the Spaniard of Susan Peek s translator had a hard time reading it, and the book has some typo, and despite Thorfinn s division and division, I had a hard time ripping it off The story beautifully told by Susan Peek does not give a truce at any time to the reader We see a charismatic, sympathetic young man like Magnus, who reminded me a lot of Alfredo of Wessex, and who as he is raised in an Eynfallow abbey, and rather than being a prince wishes to be a saint That doesn t make him useless, or pusillanial as the scene at the beginning shows The contrast between the hero, and the villain St Magnus, and his cousin Hakon, is well counted The cold legalism of the Vikings is perceived during the trial of Hakon, and also a reflection, which should not be for the Vikings, but for all Christians in general Why hasn t Christianity penetrated our hearts This is asked San Magnus during the process to his cousin, but this question could be asked us G.K Chesterton says, that man has never dared to practice real Christianity I like clan relations, which Peek exposes between St Magnus, and her father Erlend, with her uncle Paal, and with her brother Arleig, although perhaps the most beautiful character, or one of the most beautiful is Lady Thora mother of St Magnus Tor and Holibo has the similar role of Odin s ravens Instead I was surprised by the presence of Berfott which actually looks like his name was Magnus III , and who was still pagan I thought that with Olaf Tygravsson, and With St Olaf the Norwegians would have become, but I remembered, what it said history of the Catholic Church written by Louis de Wohl in which it was said that it was the Cistercians sent by Hadrian IV The English Pope expelled by Arnold of Brescia, and who gave the Irish Church to Henry II who ended up Christianizing Norway in the eleventh century I really liked the scene of Hakon, and of Osbeig, which is perhaps my favorite character, since it is very Spanish, because it remembers the funny, or the rogue, but to which the reader takes a lot of affection That s one of the things I liked the most about this novel The incredible sense of humor that this character endows the novel The witch scene, apart from being a very Conan scene It reminded me a lot of a novel by Mika Waltari Queen of the Imperial Dance I wondered if Heidewatta would be a Finnish sorceress It is that Finns have a reputation as sorcerers, but this was traditional in the pagan Norse world I liked Magnus s integrity, and how he manages to end his brother s hatred, and the moral dilemmas he has and how he solves them I also like how he introduces Kali Kolison into the story As one saint leads you to another, and I m not going to say it, so as not to reveal details of the plot I also like the reason why Magnus decides to return to Orkney, and share the kingdom with his cousin the traitor Hakon But the end, that a writer pointed me out, and told me, that it was tremendous was what I liked the most It is the struggle of absolute good, against evil I will not detail it so as not to destroy the surprise to the reader, but the ending is brutal Not because of blood, or violence, perhaps it would be surpassed by Henry Rider Haggard s Eric Bright Eyes by Henry Rider Haggard where despite his pagan background the author also sees a glimpse of conversion in his protagonists But because of the strong shock between good and evil, but it is the ground paid for holiness to germinate I like the way susan Peek recounts such a visceral event, and it s the best thing about the novel, and what led me to put five stars, not four stars on it Saint Magnus is a story of an exciting period, and of a character, who instead of opting for revenge opts for forgiveness His history, although he has of a political background, that reminded me of that of the English saint Saint Thomas Becket the relationship between Hakon, and Magnus is very similar to that of Henry II, and Thomas Becket It s funny how thin the line that separates love from hate I highly recommend this novel to Goodreads users, and recommend Susan Peek, who continued her saint novels, and noveled them, because never as now this world has had need of them PD Let him write the story he tells in his epilogue, and that of St Anscario, please PD II I spoke about my wish of reading novels of writers of Catholic Writers guild for this reason the 6th of January the Magi will bring me a present Gifts Visible Invisible I promise a review of all stories.


  2. says:

    This book is the first that I have read from Susan Peek, but it will not be the last In fact I picked up another minutes after finishing this one I could barely put this book down and devoured it And even though it is a little beyond my son right now, I told him about it and said we would read it together in a year or two This book moves at a quick pace It has amazing characters and is very well written.This story takes us back 900 years To a much darker time, but a time when the light of Catholicism had spread and was being embraced in different ways in different parts of the world It is the story of Saint Magnus Erlendsson, Earl of Orkney, also known as Saint Magnus the Martyr It is the story of a kingdom that was to be ruled by brothers upon their father s death, and from that time forward one of their sons It is the story of battles It is a story of strife and ultimately a Christian story.I was not familiar with this saint before reading this book, but will need to do some further research and reading In many ways this book reminds me of Andrew M Seddon s Saints Alive II, Celtic Paths New Stories of Old Saints Except it is a full length novel instead of a collection of short stories This book brings a few saints back to life It brings them alive in the imaginations, minds, and hearts of readers The story is wonderfully written There are battle scenes without being over the top There is conflict and strife without it being ridiculous And there are a number of characters who exhibit strong faith and end up having influence on those around them.When I read books one of my keys to judging them is would I share it with my children, now, or when they are older And would I recommend it to others This book gets a resounding yes to both of those questions This was an excellent read and though written for the teen market, I loved the book and plan on giving it to my father to read, and when they are older reading it with my children as well I highly recommend this book Read the review on my blog Book Reviews and More Note This book is part of a series of reviews 2017 Catholic Reading Plan


  3. says:

    If you re like most of us, you ve probably never even heard of St Magnus, let alone know a thing about his amazing life After stumbling across his story quite by accident in my case I m left with the feeling that maybe God saved this saint for our times, when his message of forgiveness and absolute trust in God is needed than ever For that s what this book is a tale of heroic pardon of enemies and deep, burning love of God Like her other books, Ms Peek writes in a very easy going, casual style, most accessible to teengers and young adults and anyone young at heart It s so easy to get drawn straight into the story, and really feel the hearts and minds of her characters But if you re looking for an ultra literary, heavy duty study of this saint s life, you ve come to the wrong place This is a NOVEL It s fun, it s moving, it s inspiring, it s un put downable, and I personally had a blast with it But it s not for intellectuals or literary critics, so if you re one of those, take my advice and buy something else This one s for us who want to put our feet up, kick back with a good book and enjoy the ride.


  4. says:

    Wow Let me begin by putting to rest any notion that this, being a historical novel, is bogged down with details and facts The balance and delivery of fact and fiction is flawless Saint Magnus The Last Viking brings Saint Magnus to life while delivering action packed excitement and suspense galore From the beginning, I couldn t put this book down A ruler s deathbed decree sets in motion a dire future for the heirs to the throne of the Orkney Islands When Saint Magnus, a prince, clashes with his ruthless cousin Hakon, Hakon is banished Brooding and bitter, Hakon plots revenge.Magnus faces hardships that would drive a lesser man to despair But the battles of good and evil ultimately chisel Magnus into a saint.Full of twists and turns, Saint Magnus The Last Viking is sure to be read with bated breath Teen boys will devour the action, adventure, and bravery I m sure many, many young women will enjoy this thrilling story as well Adults, you too Note that there is violence and some blood, but a story like this could not be done justice without it Violence is not used simply for shock value it brings home the reality of what Magnus suffered and how his sainthood was truly merited.At it s core, Saint Magnus The Last Viking is a most intense story of moral courage and forgiveness against all odds.Those who ve never heard of this saint before will never forget him after reading this book It s an absolute must read Reviewed by Therese HeckenkampCatholic author of Past Suspicion and Frozen Footprints


  5. says:

    I was impressed by how well the author carried off this rather astonishing story The characters seemed very real and life like No wooden saints here I was a little confused initially because, though the setting is over 900 years ago, the characters were using modern expressions But when I considered, they weren t really speaking in English either, I realized that creative licence allowed the author to set the tone Otherwise, the setting, events, and descriptions all fit very well with the times My teenage daughter found the last chapters rather distressing, and I understood why I think this is a good book to discuss with students young people, since it does cover some very painful realities By the end, I felt that I was a part of the scene I too have to choose between heroic good and terrible evil Considering the events of our day this might be a very timely position to consider.


  6. says:

    Say goodbye to dry and dusty lives of the saints tomes better suited as flower presses or door stops Saint Magnus, The Last Viking is lively, engaging, humorous, and as you might guess since Magnus was martyred, bloody.Instead of boring the reader with an inhumanly pious saint story or bogging down the tale with details of centuries old Norse life, Susan Peek has written an inspiring tale showcasing both the depth of human depravity and the glory of heroic love All in a way that is appealing to the modern reader.Throughout the novel, it s clear that saints are mere human beings with weaknesses, flaws, desires, and ambitions What sets them apart is their reliance upon God and the saints and their aim to become Christ like in spite of temptations.Beautifully written scenes of brotherly sacrificial love and a meditation on Christ s suffering for our sins are worth reading and re reading Saint Magnus, The Last Viking deftly portrays the power of forgiveness in the face of evil Its powerful ending resonates in the heart long after the book has ended.


  7. says:

    This is the tale of Magnus, Jarl Earl of Orkney, also known as Saint Magnus the Martyr According to contemporary sources, Magnus was always a tender hearted and pious child, which didn t seem to fit his position as a prince of Orkney during the turbulent Middle Ages Not the Dark Ages, as some reviewers would have it all the events of this novel, with the exception of the opening chapter, occur after the Norman Conquest The conflict throughout this novel seems to involve how Magnus will maintain his virtue, in spite of frequent temptations to violence, and the occurrence of actual violence all around him.This is one of the great virtues of Peek s writing she makes virtue compelling She does it by depicting the way in which virtue comes into conflict with the standard modes of behaviour in the historical period about which she is writing In this case, the times were very violent It was not considered unvirtuous to use pretty horrific violence against political enemies or against ordinary populations in order to profit one s kingdom But Magnus refuses to do this In the middle of a battle, for example, he simply kneels and prays the psalms In doing so, he becomes an inspiration for other characters around him, and for the reader too I don t know of many authors today who can do this They generally have to depict their characters as dark, with a number of flaws mixed in with their virtues if they even acknowledge the existence of virtues But Peek is able to describe virtuous characters and make them exciting as well That s a very important skill The violence of the novel is pretty hard hitting pardon the pun , particularly the martyrdom at the end But Peek neither glorifies it nor sentimentalizes it, and I think that comes down to a solid grasp of her characters We see the violence through their eyes, and because we care about them, we react to the violent events as they do We re perhaps disturbed by it, or we see it as unfortunately necessary we can never dismiss it But this trick of Peek s prevents us from trivializing it.One reviewer claimed that the ending was not a happy one Well, Magnus gets martyred That s not a spoiler, that s where you know his character is going from the very first time we meet him But the ending is only an unhappy one if we accept that death is a defeat, and an ultimate loss it s neither, in this case Death is the gateway to glory, but it also enables the survivors to grow in virtue The ending of the story is deeply moving, dealing as it does with redemption and forgiveness When a story confronts the necessity of forgiveness and the consequent redemption of a wrongdoer, it is not an unhappy ending It s a complex and nuanced ending.I should point out that, just because the novel is about forgiveness, it is not a pacifist book A pacifist would reject violence at all costs, but Peek acknowledges that violence is occasionally necessary, as when one s home is invaded Magnus does not shy away from violence when it s necessary, but he does pray for the souls of his enemies.Two minor criticisms one might have about Saint Magnus The Last Viking are 1 the very contemporary style, particularly in dialogue, which can be a little distracting and 2 the minor characters who sometimes verge on the caricature Certainly, as a medievalist and avid reader of historical and fantasy novels, I found the modern idioms in the dialogue a little disconcerting at first But it doesn t take long to accept that as simply part of the style of the novel The idioms seemed to me to be translations of medieval Scandinavian idioms which wouldn t necessarily mean anything to modern readers As for the minor characters who seem a little two dimensional, well, we can t give in depth treatment to all characters We d end up writing very long novels It s worth sacrificing a little depth in the minor characters for the advantage of writing such a compelling conflict between Magnus and Hakon.In conclusion, this is a fast paced, event filled narrative that makes virtue compelling and foregrounds forgiveness in a violent and harsh setting I would certainly recommend it to other readers, especially to the teen boys for whom it is written.


  8. says:

    I must admit that I had never heard of Saint Magnus, until I read Saint Magnus The Last Viking, by Susan Peek With this action packed novel, set around 1,000 A.D., we find a dual hierarchy established on the deathbed of the monarch Thorfinn Rather than leaving his throne to his eldest son, he creates a dual hierarchy, where both of his sons, Erland and Paal, are to rule over the Orkney homeland together Tensions rise as the brother s descendants seethe in animosity for each other Hakon, the son of Paal is a troublemaker whereas Aerling, the son of Erland, is hot tempered Hakon and Aerling are competitive, and do not wish to rule jointly, as their fathers successfully did However, before that can happen, circumstances come to pass that make Hakon vow revenge.From this point, early within the book, the story becomes mesmerizing What will Hakon do to get revenge How will Aerling respond And what role will Magnus play, given that Magnus becomes the protagonist of this novel Saint Magnus Filled with VirtueIn this story, so beautifully crafted by Susan Peek, we see Magnus character excel in piety, forgiveness and self giving love three virtues that you would want your own child to possess In this young adult novel, Magnus displays his piety by applying St Augustine s Just War doctrine, without Peek ever making specific reference to it As the Orkneys are invaded by a Scandinavian king, Magnus justifies engaging in battle, as being morally upright, by determining that the fighting is 1 a last resort, 2 done in self defense, 3 with a probability of success, and 4 with minimal harm to non combatants These four points align with Saint Augustine s Just War doctrine.Saint Magnus Facing ConflictLater in the story, Magnus, once again, faces battle However, in this instance, he refuses to fight, because the battle is unjustified and deemed murderous As the battle rages, he kneels in prayer instead By all accounts, he should have died, there and then but not a hair on his head was touched.Throughout the story, Magnus is provided with numerous opportunities to forgive others for injuries against him He demonstrates that forgiveness valiantly, and also encourages others to forgive as well where all instances require forgiveness for heinous activities.Magnus epitomizes the self giving love of Christ, when he is willing to die for the preservation of his brother s soul Later, he is once again willing to risk his earthly life in reparation for the soul of his cousin.Saint Magnus Role ModelIf you have a teen in your life, especially a son, grandson or nephew, and you are looking for quality books where your young adult can find a protagonist that serves as an excellent role model, then look no further than Saint Magnus The Last Viking This book is filled with action, virtue, and compelling characters Saint Magnus is a saint you should want to know about I m glad I became acquainted with such a great role model for piety, forgiveness and self giving love Should you read this book, you too will be glad to meet Saint Magnus


  9. says:

    This was an interesting slice of history from the Dark Ages about a saint I had not previously known about Teen boys will like the fast pace and action The title character is portrayed sympathetically, and many of the other characters are shown in three dimensions The frequent use of modern terms and slang, especially in the characters speech, was a distraction to this otherwise well written story.


  10. says:

    In many chapels, reddened by the setting sun, the saints rest silently, waiting for someone to love them These beautifully poetic words, written long ago by an anonymous priest, serve as an introduction to Saint Magnus, The Last Viking, a book in Susan Peek s series on little known saints Upon reading this quote, my interest was instantly piqued, and I turned the page to begin the story The I read on, the I became convinced that this book was not only good, but important As indicated on the back cover, it is geared towards teens although relevant for all ages With an engaging style that prompts you to turn the page, not to mention captivating adventure and suspense, this volume will undoubtedly capture the attention of young people with the misconception that learning about saints is boring Peek s choice to tell the story through narrative form rather than a textbook approach was also apt I found myself, as an adult, wanting to soak up every historical detail while following the characters or, in this case, real life people in their compelling and, at times, heart wrenching, journey I love St Magnus This may not seem like a unusual thing to say, for I am indeed a Catholic who looks to the example of the saints for inspiration and guidance in leading a holy life Yet I had never heard St Magnus tale and, as far as I can recall, had never even heard of this saint After reading his story, I am utterly baffled as to how his existence managed to elude me Several times while reading, I found myself picturing the scene in a movie, and that is a testament to Peek s solid writing skills St Magnus became real to me, a living, breathing boy with his own struggles and victories, made manifest through the revelation of inner thoughts, as well as his actions and dialogue with others I found that I cared about him deeply, as well as the other players on God s stage, from his fiery brother Aerling to the sympathetic Kol Kalison, a good man of faith who found himself drawn to friendship with Magnus despite the fact that they were on opposite sides in the conflict Themes such as forgiveness are sprinkled throughout the text, inspiring a desire in the reader to grow in holiness While there are many serious scenarios that take place in this book, Peek did not shy away from using humor when appropriate, particularly in dialogue There were many relatable moments that will bring this foreign landscape of times past to the here and now, proving that the stories of the saints are still relevant today While it is a pageturner with modern appeal, it is not an overly simplistic or watered down version Peek chooses her language well in particular in her masterful conclusions to chapters painting both lovely imagery and emotionally evocative moments with the stroke of a pen The ending of the story will tug at your heart, and may perhaps bring a tear to the eye I highly recommend this enthralling narrative that brings to life the world and life of an incredible, holy boy who became a courageous saint Two thumbs up