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When Christ and His Saints Slept

When Christ and His Saints Slept A D As church bells tolled for the death of England s King Henry I his barons faced the unwelcome prospect of being ruled by a woman Henry s beautiful daughter Maude Countess of Anjou But befor

  • Title: When Christ and His Saints Slept
  • Author: Sharon Kay Penman
  • ISBN: 9780345396686
  • Page: 389
  • Format: Paperback
  • A.D 1135 As church bells tolled for the death of England s King Henry I, his barons faced the unwelcome prospect of being ruled by a woman Henry s beautiful daughter Maude, Countess of Anjou But before Maude could claim her throne, her cousin Stephen seized it In their long and bitter struggle, all of England bled and burned.Sharon Kay Penman s magnificent fifth novelA.D 1135 As church bells tolled for the death of England s King Henry I, his barons faced the unwelcome prospect of being ruled by a woman Henry s beautiful daughter Maude, Countess of Anjou But before Maude could claim her throne, her cousin Stephen seized it In their long and bitter struggle, all of England bled and burned.Sharon Kay Penman s magnificent fifth novel summons to life a spectacular medieval tragedy whose unfolding breaks the heart even as it prepares the way for splendors to come the glorious age of Eleanor of Aquitaine and the Plantagenets that would soon illumine the world.

    When Christ and His Saints Slept A Novel Penman, Sharon Although When Christ and His Saints Slept is historical fiction, the descriptions of life, war, peace, death, and the male dominated world opened my eyes wide I found I was compelled to keep reading. Christ title When Christ and His Saints Slept by Sharon Kay Penman Jan , When Christ and His Saints Slept is a very long book, which would make for a very interesting miniseries This novel is the real Game of Thrones, played against a backdrop of shifting loyalties, clashing armies and the suffering of innocents. When Christ and His Saints Slept When Christ and His Saints Sleptis a historical novelwritten by Sharon Kay Penman, published in It is the first of Penman s Plantagenet trilogy, ultimately five books followed by Time and Chance, Devil s Brood, Lionheartand A King s Ransom. Second Coming of Jesus Christ Bibleinfo Christ s second coming will be bright, loud and glorious This event cannot be hidden, every human on planet earth will see Jesus He will come back personally and literally Revelation says, Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him There will not be a

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    About Author

    1. Sharon Kay Penman says:
      Penman received her bachelor s degree from the University of Texas at Austin, she majored in history, and also received a Juris Doctor J.D degree from Rutgers University School of Law, and later worked as a tax lawyer Penman suffered from an eighteen month bout with mononucleosis.The Sunne in Splendour, a novel about Richard III of England is one of the most popular books on the Historical Novel Society s list of best historical novels In 1996, following the success of When Christ and His Saints Slept which dealt with the Anarchy and the early career of King Henry II of England , Penman ventured into the historical whodunnit with four mysteries set in the court of Eleanor of Aquitaine during the reign of Richard I The mysteries did not enjoy the same success as her straight historical novels, to which she returned in 2002, with Time and Chance, again covering the life of Eleanor of Aquitaine and Henry II In 2008, she published Devil s Brood, the final book in her trilogy about Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine, and her latest novel,about their son, Richard Coeur de Lion, titled Lionheart will be published in the US in October of 2011, Down Under in November of 2011, and in the UK in March of 2012.

    Comment 260 on “When Christ and His Saints Slept

    1. StoryTellerShannon says:
      Penman s broad epic scope focuses on the dynastic struggle for the crown of England This takes place in the early 12th century when Henry I, who had over 20 illegitimate children, loses his one legitimate heir in the White Ship Ordeal i.e basically, a chunk of the fleet sank in the British storms Upon Henry I s death it was settled that Henry s daughter, Maude, would rule For his barons this was quite unpopular as women were not supposed to rule, which opened the doors for a cousin, Stephen of B [...]

    2. Iset says:
      It was with great anticipation that I returned to Sharon Penman s When Christ and His Saints Slept, the first book by Sharon Penman that I ever read at the tender age of 10, and which for good reasons immediately became one of my favourite books of all time and in all the years since has never been displaced from its solid and thoroughly deserved status as the cream of the crop not just of historical fiction but across genres This is the only book for which I have ever stayed awake without sleep [...]

    3. Jeffrey Keeten says:
      You will look at this book and find the 742 pages daunting, but I will relieve your mind on that score The book reads fast Penman keeps the pages moving bringing history to life and putting flesh on the bones of a vast array of characters Despite the plot involving so many historical figures I never found myself to be lost I have read quite a bit about the Plantagenets and that may have helped me to decipher the where, why and what easily, but I do think a reader with less background of the per [...]

    4. Bryon says:
      I liked this book, and am a fan of Penman sbut there were a few issues that I had with this one 1 Head hopping Sometimes it s really hard to tell who she s talking about, and you have to go back and re read to figure it out.2 Many scenes seem to have this basic structure 1 Some major characters, most likely nobles, are talking about something eminently important 2 SuddenlyA rider knight will rush in to tell them that someone has died been born, or a castle city is under siege taken, etc.It just [...]

    5. Tania says:
      A man can be our enemy, Eustace, and still be a decent sort.I ve read all of Philippa Gregory s king and queen books, and this is only my second title by Sharon Kay Penman I enjoy them both but for different reasons PG shows you all the intrigues in the courts, but you re never really aware of what is happening to the man on the street These are quick, easy and very intriguing reads SKP shows the effects of the kings wars and decisions on the country as a whole I found it especially sad that non [...]

    6. Orsolya says:
      Before the Tudors and before the Plantagenets England, France, and much of Europe was comprised of territories up for conquest Although history always highlights men, there were women groveling for crowns, as well Ever hear of Empress Maude versus King Stephen Sharon Kay Penman traverses this period in her novel, When Christ and his Saints Slept.A warning must initially be signaled that Penman s novel is a heavy one The pages immediately introduce a multitude of characters and the story is told [...]

    7. Misfit says:
      A Sad and Tragic Period in England s History and truly a time when Christ and his Saints slept A fascinating, complicated tale with a huge cast of characters, many with similar names It was hard to keep track of at times, a list of who s who at the front of the book would have been helpful, as SKP did in the next book, Time and Chance The characters were well written, and I appreciated that neither Stephen who did steal the crown nor Maude were written as black and white evil vs saint all had fl [...]

    8. Sage says:
      This is not a great example of historical fiction The story is thin and feels like it is just there to connect the historical elements that the author had researched and wanted to tell us about It s hard to develop much interest in any of the characters Really, this isn t so much a novel as a seemingly endless series of vignettes I m struggling to get through it, but sticking it out for some reason I definitely wouldn t recommend.

    9. Krista Baetiong Tungol says:
      And so began for the wretched people of England, a time of suffering so great that they came to fear Christ and his saints slept Now I understand what the fuss on this book is about It is a clear cut narration of historical events leading to the Anarchy and what it was like for people from all standing to live through and suffer the tribulations of this particular period, starting from the day Stephen and Empress Maude fought over England s crown Reading this is like poring over a history book s [...]

    10. The FountainPenDiva, Old school geek chick and lover of teddy bears says:
      It still boggles the mind to think that England went through twenty years of civil war because men just couldn t stand to see a powerful woman on the throne When Christ and His Saints Slept is a very long book, which would make for a very interesting miniseries This novel is the real Game of Thrones, played against a backdrop of shifting loyalties, clashing armies and the suffering of innocents One cannot help to feel some sympathy for Stephen, the man who should not have been king I wanted to d [...]

    11. Nate says:
      This truly epic novel covers the years between 1101 and 1154 in England and some duchies in France as the nobility fought an astonishingly long and destructive war over who would sit the throne of England Stephen of Blois or the Empress Maude A huge cast of characters populates this book and their conflicts with each other and themselves are what propels this story All of them have distinctive personalities and personal motive is a huge factor in this story, as sides were changed often and loyal [...]

    12. Manybooks says:
      I read Sharon Kay Penman s When Christ and his Saints Slept many years ago I purchased a hardback copy with much anticipation when it was first released, mostly because of my adoration of Ellis Peters brilliant Brother Cadfael series which takes place in the same historical period and must admit that I have neither the energy nor even the inclination to consider a detailed and intense rereading at least at present in order to pen a longer and involved review, as my reading experience, while ind [...]

    13. Samantha says:
      Sometimes I have a difficult time deciding how to rate a book I expect to find that a 5 star book stands out among the millions of written pages out there This one does I have read it before and knew exactly what would happen, but that didn t stop tears from forming in my eyes at times as Penman skillfully made history come alive.Even the title is eye catching and thought provoking than most When Christ and His Saints Slept was an era of English history fraught with unfortunate events beginning [...]

    14. Deborah Pickstone says:
      I have read this several times but realised during this re read how much critical a reader I have become not necessarily a good thing, in some ways So, the complaint first writing forsoothly I wish she wouldn t Also, the use of the term lad lass every time someone speaks to someone else gets REALLY irritating I know it s an English habit but not everyone uses it and I doubt it was different then It s part of the writing forsoothly I think it s one of the dangers of writing about English history [...]

    15. Gary says:
      What makes Sharon Penman s historical novels set in medieval Britain so amazing is how they combine sticking quite close to historical facts, with making a thrilling read enjoyable to modern readers, together with an engaging cast of characters.This novel documents the nineteen year civil war between Empress Maud, Countess of Anjou and Lady of the English and King Stephen, a war which ravaged England and caused great suffering to the people.Penman outlines the complex characters of Maude proud, [...]

    16. Robin Wiley says:
      It called to me, so I decided to reread it.Wow, what a completely shitty time to live in England or France It amazes me that one could carry on a war for 20 years and just dismiss the misery one is causing people The common people didn t care who wore the crown They just wanted to live their lives and feed their families But every year or so you mow down their town on the way to the next castle, fort or stronghold Your army marches on it s belly, so you take everything edible on the way through [...]

    17. James Burns says:
      I have always loved historical books about Eleanor of Aquitaine and Henry II, and even though this a work Historical Fiction it was well researched and meets my criteria for Historical Novels 1st, is it historical accurate describing Battles, and Characters 2nd, are the characters described real people and how many fictional people are there 3rd, Can the book come to life as if I m living the story I don t have the words to describe how much I enjoyed reading this book.The first chapters is abou [...]

    18. Moppet says:
      When I was a little girl I had a chart showing the Kings and Queens of England on my bedroom wall I was especially interested in the Queens of England that is, the ones who had ruled in their own right, not the consorts But there weren t too many of those Prior to Mary I if you don t count Lady Jane Grey , there was only one Matilda.So I was disappointed to learn that Matilda had never really reigned On his death her father, Henry I, who had lost his only legitimate son in the wreck of the White [...]

    19. Dawn says:
      I didn t like this book, skipping over and skimming through the last half as fast as I could.Set in 1135 England, it tells the story of Stephen and Maude s fight over the thone I picked out this as my first Penman novel because it was set in the era of Brother Cadfael The amount of time spent on Maude s unhappy marriage and Stephens wife was tedious and jumping from one drama to the next drama was too much action and not enough story or character building The history was fascinating but the writ [...]

    20. Lori says:
      I m having such an easier time getting into this than Here Be Dragons.Don t be misled by the 3 star rating, this was a very good book I notice another review says I m glad I read it, and I m glad it s over , which is how I feel The history was fascinating, I knew nothing about Maude and the civil war in 12 century England Both she and Stephen, who usurped her crown, were extremely well depicted and fully fleshed out into real people And when one thinks of a usurper, one usually things of a power [...]

    21. Kerrie says:
      Not since Colleen McCullough s Masters of Rome series have I read such a meticulously researched and yet full of life novel of historical events which have only been preserved in ancient and dryly worded contemporary histories Penman had quite the feat, considering that the chroniclers of the time, misogynist men of the Church, were hostile to Maude and her pursuit of the English throne that was rightly hers She did an excellent job of balancing Maude as a sympathetic but flawed woman who had th [...]

    22. Robin says:
      Based on the conflict between King Stephen and Empress Maude, this is an extensive and very well written novel for historical fiction enthusiasts Written in third person, it follows numerous characters and sub plots I think the most interesting thing about the novel is that neither Maude nor Stephen are portrayed as the protagonist or antagonist Though this means the reader s loyalty is split, it also means the characters are well developed with realistic positive and negative qualities You real [...]

    23. Kirsten says:
      Sharon Kay Penman is the all time master of historical fiction Her Welsh Princes trilogy even made my Dad cry This is the first in her Plantagenets series It starts with the death of the only legitimate son of King Henry I and what that leads to Will his daughter take the crown back from her cousin Stephen What happens when her son Henry meets the Queen of France, Eleanor of Aquitaine This is some of the most dramatic and romantic of historical times Names from history litter this book including [...]

    24. Michele says:
      The remarkable Eleanor of Aquitaine Trilogy by Sharon Kay Penman began in 1996 with the publication of When Christ and His Saints Slept Thus begins the remarkable story of the Angevins and their conquest of the English throne.In the fall of 1120, off the coast of Normandy, the infamous White Ship ran aground, leading to the drowning of William Adelin This in itself may have just been a footnote in history but for the fact that William happened to be the only legitimate male offspring of Henry I, [...]

    25. Lisa says:
      Actual rating is 4.5 starsThis is the second Sharon Kay Penman book that I have read, the first being the brilliant The Sunne in Splendour A Novel of Richard III which is one of my favourite books of all time I therefore went into this with high expectations and I m pleased to say that I was not disappointed at all Set in England and France in the middle of the 12th century, during a bloody, nineteen year civil war known as the Anarchy, this has everything you could want from a historical fictio [...]

    26. Peggy says:
      Wow What a fascinating and through look at 12th century England and Europe when King Stephen and Empress Maud were fighting for the Throne of England I started this with very little knowledge of the period before Henry II was King of England He is of course famous for his controversial marriage to Eleanor of Aquitaine Henry and Eleanor don t show up much until the last 20% of the novel but that did not deter from my reading experience.The story is told from the perspective of historical persons [...]

    27. Chrissie says:
      Finished I am VERY glad I read the book However I am also glad that it is done So how can I give it than three stars The author brings to life the medieval era After reading the book you truly know the character traits of the main historical figures I cannot emphasize this enough They become true friends foes They are real, no one sided portrayals No good guys and bad guys, just real people with good and bad qualities Boy did I come to like Henry II And King Stephen before him, a king with a he [...]

    28. Ryan Groesbeck says:
      If I could sum up this book with one word, I think it would be sad As one of the barons says early in the book, the choice is between a queen who listens to no one, and a king who listens to anyone It s a terrible choice, made worse by the newness of the Norman French aristocracy which is still settling into control of England over a restive populace Leading magnates switch sides with alarming frequency, and the ones who suffer worst of all are the poor caught in the middle Penman does an excell [...]

    29. Rosi says:
      Slow reading due to too many characters The author should have chosen a main character and told their story There was no connection with any of the endless characters in this book None of the hordes of characters in this book is sympathetic or likeable and the book is severely lacking in character development I was never drawn into any of them and couldn t get past seeing them as 2 dimensional and boring And, unfortunately, the author added even characters which had no relevance to the story, m [...]

    30. Alina Radu says:
      I like this author increasingly with every book I read The book tells the story of Stephen of England and Empress Matilda of England The life of Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine are shown less but this is because they are still very young.Anyway is amazing the young age at which they began to appear on the political scene I can not wait to read the second book.

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