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King Alfred's Viking A Story of the First English Fleet   By: (1856-1913)

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King Alfred's Viking is a captivating historical fiction novel written by Charles W. Whistler. Set in the 9th century, it unravels the tale of the legendary King Alfred and his brave efforts to protect England from the invading Vikings.

Whistler's meticulous attention to historical accuracy makes this novel an enjoyable and educational read. The author effectively transports the reader back in time, immersing them in the intricate political landscape of the period. From the opening pages, the vivid descriptions and detailed world-building create a sense of authenticity that is both impressive and engaging.

The characters in King Alfred's Viking are well-developed and relatable. King Alfred himself is portrayed as a wise and resourceful leader, burdened with the responsibility of defending his kingdom against the Viking onslaught. Through his eyes, readers witness the highs and lows of his reign, sympathizing with his struggles and admiring his determination to unite England.

Whistler's writing style is fluid and eloquent, allowing the story to flow seamlessly from one chapter to the next. The pacing is well-balanced, with suspenseful moments that keep readers on the edge of their seats. Whether it's a gory battle sequence or a subtle political maneuver, the author maintains a level of tension that keeps the story gripping throughout.

One of the strengths of King Alfred's Viking lies in its ability to transport readers into the heart of the action. The battle scenes are described in such vivid detail that one can almost taste the adrenaline and hear the clash of swords. Whistler captures the brutality and chaos of war, painting a realistic picture of the hardships faced by both the English and the Vikings.

Furthermore, the novel explores complex themes such as loyalty, sacrifice, and the true nature of power. By interweaving these themes into the storyline, Whistler provides readers with a thought-provoking narrative that goes beyond mere historical entertainment.

However, the book does have a few minor flaws. At times, the vast array of characters and their relationships can be overwhelming, making it challenging to keep track of everyone's role in the story. Additionally, some sections may feel slightly repetitive, with similar battles and conflicts being revisited throughout the novel.

Nevertheless, these minor flaws do not detract from the overall enjoyment of King Alfred's Viking. Whistler beautifully captures the spirit of a turbulent era, effectively blending history and fiction to create a compelling narrative. This book is highly recommended for both history enthusiasts and fans of epic adventures. It is a testament to the resilience and courage of the English people, as well as a reminder of the importance of legends like King Alfred in shaping a nation's identity.

First Page:

King Alfred's Viking A Story of the First English Fleet by Charles W. Whistler.


The general details and course of events given in this story are, so far as regards the private life and doings of King Alfred, from his life as written by his chaplain, Asser. One or two further incidents of the Athelney period are from the later chroniclers notably the sign given by St. Cuthberht as are also the names of the herdsman and the nobles in hiding in the fen.

That Alfred put his first fleet into the charge of "certain Vikings" is well known, though the name of their chief is not given. These Vikings would certainly be Norse, either detached from the following of Rolf Ganger, who wintered in England in 875 A.D. the year before his descent on Normandy; or else independent rovers who, like Rolf, had been driven from Norway by the high handed methods of Harald Fairhair. Indeed, the time when a Norse contingent was not present with the English forces, from this period till at least that of the battle of Brunanburh in 947 A.D. would probably be an exception.

There are, therefore, good historic grounds for the position given to the hero of the story as leader of the newly formed fleet. The details of the burning of his supposed father's hall, and of the Orkney period, are from the Sagas... Continue reading book >>

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