The Religion

A Novel

Tim Willocks

Sarah Crichton Books

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This is what we dream of: to be so swept away, so poleaxed by a book that the breath is sucked right out of us. Brace yourselves.
 
May 1565. Suleiman the Magnificent, emperor of the Ottomans, has declared a jihad against the Knights of Saint John the Baptist. The largest armada of all time approaches the knights’ Christian stronghold on the island of Malta. The Turks know the knights as the “Hounds of Hell.” The knights call themselves “The Religion.”
 
In Messina, Sicily, a French countess, Carla La Penautier, seeks passage to Malta in a quest to find the son taken from her at his birth twelve years ago. The only man with the expertise and daring to help her is a Rabelaisian soldier of fortune, arms dealer, former janissary, and strapping Saxon adventurer by the name of Mattias Tannhauser. He agrees to accompany the lady to Malta, where, amid the most spectacular siege in military history, they must try to find the boy—whose name they do not know and whose face they have never seen—and pluck him from the jaws of Holy War.
 
The Religion is the first book of the Tannhauser Trilogy, and from the first page of this epic account of the last great medieval conflict between East and West, it is clear we are in the hands of a master. Not since James Clavell has a novelist so powerfully and assuredly plunged readers headlong into another world and time. Anne Rice transformed the vampire novel. Stephen King reinvented horror. Now, in a spectacular tale of heroism, tragedy, and passion, Tim Willocks revivifies historical fiction.

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Book Excerpts

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Prologue

The Devshirme

Spring, A.D. 1540

The Fagaras Mountains—East Hungarian Marches

On the night the scarlet horsemen took him away—from all he knew and all he might have known—the moon waxed full in Scorpio, sign of his birth, and as if by the hand of God its incandescence split the alpine valley sheer into that which was dark and that which was light, and the light lit the path of devils to his door. If the dogs of war hadn’t lost their way, the boy would never have been found, and peace and love and labor might have blessed him all his days.

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The Religion by Tim Willocks--Audiobook Excerpt

Listen to this audiobook excerpt from Tim Willocks' novel The Religion, Book One of The Tannhauser Triology. From the first page of this epic account of the last great medieval conflict between East and West, it is clear we are in the hands of a master. Not since James Clavell has a novelist so powerfully and assuredly plunged readers headlong into another place and time.

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Reviews

Praise for The Religion

UK Praise for The Religion:
 
“A novel of high adventure, blood, guts and romantic love . . . As master craftsman, [Willocks] tells his story with extraordinary pace.” —Brian Martin, Literary Review

“Gripping . . . A classic of its kind.” —John Williams, Mail on Sunday

“Macho, sexy, profoundly bloody and concerned with spiritual salvation.” —Lisa Hilton, The Sunday Telegraph

“A gripping story with reliable factual underpinnings.” —Jane Jakerman, Times Literary Supplement

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About the Author

Tim Willocks

Tim Willocks is a novelist and filmmaker. He is the author of the novels Bad City Blues, Green River Rising, and Blood-Stained Kings. He lives in Ireland.

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Available Formats and Book Details

The Religion
A Novel
Tim Willocks

e-Book Agency

e-Book Agency
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Sarah Crichton Books
April 2008
e-Book Agency
ISBN: 9781429934947
ISBN10: 1429934948
640 pages, Includes 2 Maps and a Glossary
$7.99

Unabridged Digital Audio

Unabridged  Digital Audio
Macmillan Audio
May 2007
Unabridged Digital Audio
ISBN: 9781427201010
ISBN10: 1427201013
Audio Run Time: 25:00
$29.99

Mass Market Paperbound

Mass Market Paperbound
Tom Doherty Associates
Tor Books
April 2008
Mass Market Paperbound
ISBN: 9780765357557
ISBN10: 0765357550
4 3/16 x 6 3/4 inches, 688 pages
$7.99
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