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The Religion [Download] ➽ The Religion Author Tim Willocks – Natus-physiotherapy.co.uk Their god is War And every god needs his Devil THE RELIGIONMalta, The greatest war the world has ever seen is unleashed on the doomed island as the Turks do battle with the Knights The Knights call t Their god is War And every god needs his Devil The ReligionMalta,The greatest war the world has ever seen is unleashed on the doomed island as the Turks do battle with the Knights The Knights call themselves The Religion The Turks call them the Hounds of HellBack in Sicily, the beautiful, rich Carla pines for her bastard son, lost in the bloody inferno across the waterEnter Mattias Tannhauser warrior, hero and double agent Under Carla s command, he embarks on a death defying mission to save her son But can he evade the Inquisition and escape to run the Turkish blockade to victory in time.

  • Paperback
  • 771 pages
  • The Religion
  • Tim Willocks
  • English
  • 07 December 2018
  • 0099581299

About the Author: Tim Willocks

British doctor and novelist.



10 thoughts on “The Religion

  1. Nate Nate says:

    I guess The Religion is a good titleit s cryptic and kinda ominous sounding and does have a connection to the actual contents of the story Despite that, I think that Fucking, Killing Shitting Malta 1565 might be a bitappropriate here While I can certainly agree all three of those things are an unavoidable part of life and can be an enjoyable part of fiction, I really don t think that s what Mr Willocks was intending for me to see as the identity of his story but that s what I cam I guess The Religion is a good titleit s cryptic and kinda ominous sounding and does have a connection to the actual contents of the story Despite that, I think that Fucking, Killing Shitting Malta 1565 might be a bitappropriate here While I can certainly agree all three of those things are an unavoidable part of life and can be an enjoyable part of fiction, I really don t think that s what Mr Willocks was intending for me to see as the identity of his story but that s what I came away with The book doesn t seem to know whether it wants to be a thoughtful, profound telling of this event or a lurid historical novel packed with cheap thrills.It sucks, because the author certainly writes well His prose is pretty and can be ornate, even He s done his homework and writes the setting and events vividly and with authority The siege of Malta waslike a grueling, epic battle fought over the span of a few months and Willocks certainly paints it well You can see the banners swaying and the massed white hats of the Janissaries and hear the cry of the war horns with ease and very little force of imagination, which is always, always a great litmus test for writers of historical novels It s easy to see where Willocks is strong Once you get a bit deeper than that, it becomesproblematic.The characters are the first issue of this confusing book The main character is Matthias Tannhauser, a Saxon dude who saw his family slain when he was a child then promptly joined their murderers the Ottoman Empire Eventually he comes to employment as badass gun smuggler or whatever It all sounds cool, but the man himself is relatively boring He s hardly flawed Willocks makes a point of his creepy love of killing the absolute shit out of the Ottomans, but that s it and is very typical anti hero with his playing both sides thing Then there s Bors, his likable English companion This is what I m talking about you don t have main characters that can be summed up as likable English companion in the kind of novel that Willocks seemed to occasionally be striving for Next we have Carla, who I actually liked She seems to behuman than the rest of the cast and I loved the scenes of her taking care of the multitude of injured in the hospital I m not a Christian, but I find generalized and bullheaded anti Christian rhetoric irritating and boring as much as I do generalized and bullheaded pro Christian rhetoric, so it was nice to see piety rendered as a positive character trait in such a modern thinking novel filled with the baser parts of life written by someone I m guessing to be a fellow heathen The conflict between her pious and erotic natures was an interesting part of her personality Piety as interpreted by the Inquisition as written by Willocks not as nice, however The main antagonist here is Ludovico Ludovici I m pretty sure that was his name, and I did laugh writing that out who is a former inquisitor and burner He s a pretty decent bad guy Willocks makes the effort of making him a human being gone wrong and not an innately evil villain Then we have Amparo, whose presence as a character was completely mystifying and aggravating for me She s Carla s best friend and maidservanther family was predictably killed when she was a baby in a horrible way and she went through hell until she met Carla or whatever She has this aloof yet passionately intense kind of personality that no human in fucking history ever had She predictably falls in love with Tannhauser and serves as his sex doll for the rest of the book, stopping occasionally to play with virtuoso skill on violin It s just all sodumb Any time she was on the page if she wasn t having some inane overwrought thought process she was having ridiculous sex with Tannhauser that serves to further the incredibly dull love triangle Who has sex in a fucking WOODEN TUB OF BRINE Dumb and even offensive in its dumbness People have sex and realistically drawn adult characters in fiction should have sex, but not like this I know this rant probably makes me sound like a prick, but her whole existence really was an incredibly annoying invention by the author.Anywaysthree paragraphs of ranting about the lukewarm characters I m sure that s a joy to readthat was basically the whole issue with this book the back and forth between somethingconcrete and profound and just an orgy of violence, defecation and sex A note about the poop content I think thatauthors need to include the fact that their characters have to use the bathroom It s not a pleasant part of life but it certainly brings a gross realism to the book I remember the characters shat a lot in Shogun and I thought it was cool Clavell had the balls to include it The thing is I could probably enjoy both of these possible books the garbage cheap thriller or the insightful epic But the schizophrenic nature of both combined was a huge problem for me I don t know, maybe this kind of species of book should exist anyways one straddling the line between trash and true substance I liked it but I could have liked it a lot , easily Or maybe I m just being pretentious

  2. Karla Karla says:

    I hated this book I love violence and don t mind sex in my fiction, but this book was absolutely wretched, despite having those two ingredients The main fault, I think, was the hero He was too perfect and was therefore absolutely obnoxious He knows how everything should be defended, he is looked to grudgingly for his experience in the Muslim world, he turns the loins of women to water and the hearts to men to envy And unfortunately there are precious few scenes where he doesn t suck out the I hated this book I love violence and don t mind sex in my fiction, but this book was absolutely wretched, despite having those two ingredients The main fault, I think, was the hero He was too perfect and was therefore absolutely obnoxious He knows how everything should be defended, he is looked to grudgingly for his experience in the Muslim world, he turns the loins of women to water and the hearts to men to envy And unfortunately there are precious few scenes where he doesn t suck out the oxygen with his arrogance and Dig me attitude When he s not sassing Inquisitors, he s bending his concubine over an anvil and making her wonder how she could ever be luckier.The female characters were atrocious One, Amparo, is a borderline idiot and sperm receptacle namely the hero s , and the noblewoman Carla is a frail flower whose only moment of steel occurs when she s channeling Jesus in the hospital Everywhere else, she s imagining herself in Amparo s place getting peerlessly reamed by our randy hero.The rest of the cast for this book has blockbuster scrawled all over it is peppered with stereotypes and cliches There s Bors, the burly and gruff sidekick tailor made for Ray Winstone or Brendon Gleeson in Yorkshire overdrive Ludovico was your typical evil priest who lapses into lust and brings woe unto all who cross him There were others, but everyone pretty much was overshadowed by his Badassedness Mattias Tannhauser.And then there was the feces Holy crap It s no lie to say this was the sh ttiest book I ve ever read Literally Practically every 5th page, there was some mention of sight, smell, or the act of evacuating one s bowels The part during Sabato Svi s torture was my favorite, when Tannhauser is fighting one of the baddies and panic squealed forth from said baddie s arse My 1 LOLarious line of 2009 Whether it was in battle, a streetfight, a hospital, or just passing an alley, the subject of excrement came up with full on detail It was so bizarrely repetitive and single minded Just what does Mr Willocks get up to in his spare time Are glass coffee tables involved There s a plot in there somewhere about finding Carla s Ludovico s long lost son bred in mutual love lust, but it was swamped by swiving, long winded speeches, purple prose, and characters that were as dull on page 100 as they were 500 pages later I went into the book with reasonable expectations and left utterly disappointed that only a couple of my tormenters were killed by the end and baffled that the ALA thought this was noteworthy.I have no problem with my carps being in old bodice rippers In fact, I love the un PC nature of those books with troglodyte heroes and less than steely spined heroines, but historical fiction is supposed to be better In fact, we re often told that Then be better And when it wins an award, it better be better

  3. Terri Terri says:

    There are a lot of rare things in this world that I would like to get my hands on Pink diamonds Vintage John Paul Gaultier Corset Dresses Black Limited Edition Burberry Trenchcoats An Aston Martin Vantage V8 or V12, I am not fussy and lengthy books that stay consistent in pace and quality from front cover to back cover Obviously, for me, only one of these was ever going to be attainable And it wasn t the Aston Martin Vantage It was, of course, a lengthy book with pace and quality f There are a lot of rare things in this world that I would like to get my hands on Pink diamonds Vintage John Paul Gaultier Corset Dresses Black Limited Edition Burberry Trenchcoats An Aston Martin Vantage V8 or V12, I am not fussy and lengthy books that stay consistent in pace and quality from front cover to back cover Obviously, for me, only one of these was ever going to be attainable And it wasn t the Aston Martin Vantage It was, of course, a lengthy book with pace and quality finish to end An enigma A myth Often whispered about, never actually seen I have tried one or two, been tempted by a promise of cover to cover bounty many times Was once wrongly directed down the Count of Monte Cristo path A book that I felt suffered from much the same problem as many lengthy books Too much waffle and could benefit from being a couple hundred pages shorter Okay, so editors were less keen on cutting back then, but they should not be too scared of it now And yet they seem to be.I will concede that The Religion could have been shorter Only nothing drastic 50 pages at the most But a few too many pages was kind of a small price to pay for a book that did not run out of prose in the first few chapters It went on On and on On and on and on Beefed up with excellent landscape and character creation, anchored by vivid portals into extraordinary battle scenes I could not put it down It was a gem as rare as any pink diamond, with as much pace at times as any V12 Aston Martin As tight at the top as at the waist as at the back, as any Gaultier corset and withmovement than any Burberry trench.It was quite a find.A rare find that you will notice from the outset With passages that wash across the page in fresh, vernal literary splashes.Page 12The Fagaras Mountains, East Hungarian Marches Spring AD1540 The yard was empty The heavens at the rimrock s edge were reefed in vermilion cloud From the village pillars of smoke quavered skyward and with them cries of anguish and crackles of flame He walked across the cobbles, sick with fear Fear of whatever vileness afflicted his mother Fear of shame Of cowardice Of the knowledge that he couldn t save her Of the darkness that had housed itself inside his spirit Yet the darkness spoke with a feral power that brooked no refusal nor hesitation.Plunge in, the darkness said Mattias turned and looked back at the forgeLike the blade in the quench.Plunge in Through to the middle they surged on The tautness of a well trained writer carving his skill in inked words Page 348The Gauntlet The Bailey The Causeway 11 June 1565 Straighten up, breathe and blow, shake the sweat He wheezed His chest was tight, his gorge scorched He felt nauseous and weak He was too far forward Get back.The horde shouldered each other in their frenzy to get through the choke point, their weapons constricted, one shield obstructing another Spot the openings Swallow the scalding bile Kill him, kill them, kill them all A blow glanced off his helm and hammered into his pauldron Spike him in the privities, stab him in the neck The fellow fought on from his knees, blinded by the fountain from his arteries, still scrabbling with his blade for the joints in Tannhauser s plate.Tannhauser drove the finial through his temple and stepped back Now backstep again Keep them at bay He threw an upward swordcut to the thighs and backstroke to the guts and a thrust to the chest, in deep and twist Don t look in his eyes He s done And breathe, you fool, keep the knees loose, ignore the battle cries Get back.It goes on On and on and on But I think I have shown you enough.Don t be dissuaded from trying this for fear it is too masculine It is masculine, without a doubt, but there is beauty too Beauty of the heart and of the lovelorn The author has not forgotten you You, the reader of the heart.While I did not think there was much romance in this book, it is there A tugging undertow that a reader like me who does not read with the heart but reads with the mind can easily ignore I hardly even noticed the female characters most of the time They did not take up much room in my mental landscape.To me the book is perfect Perfectly written Fast paced from start to finish The story, however, had some personal taste flaws They are not going to be flaws for everyone Some of what I call a flaw, will be the things you will most likely value about the story.It was, ahem, the sex Some may say it had to be there as sex is a natural part of life In part this is true although many live without sex in their lives and I would never claim their lives to be unnaturally led , but the sex in this book is quite often odd Poorly located Unnecessary Forced into the story.There isn t a lot of it and if you blink or skim read you may even miss it When it does come no pun intended it is oddly placed, like an afterthought, or to please the authors own building sexual tension If an author wants sex in a book it needs to feel naturally placed Not just plopped down because the author was randy or the editor told him it neededsex.It was a great ride while it lasted the book, not the sex and I was disappointed it came to an end My forlorn need not last forever though, for there is a book to follow it called Twelve Children of Paris I have bought it already and cannot wait to read it With any luck, it will be as well done as this rare gem, The Religion As this kind of writing skill is not something an author loses down a bottle of whiskey while he tries to outdrink his writer s block No, he clearly has command of his writing talent.The only place I feel he can fall down will be story Lets hope he gets that right again too.Due to the odd sex 4 1 2 stars

  4. David Farlin David Farlin says:

    This is the first book I ve read in years that I felt was NOT written at a 6th grade level Willocks writing is like reading poetry Even though in this particular book the poetry is about knights hacking each other to death on mounds of dead bodies I felt like I was reading a book written at an adult level No, not smutty, just smart and intelligent I m not putting much here regarding the subject or plot other than the Knights I ve mentioned But if you like stories about Knights Templar A This is the first book I ve read in years that I felt was NOT written at a 6th grade level Willocks writing is like reading poetry Even though in this particular book the poetry is about knights hacking each other to death on mounds of dead bodies I felt like I was reading a book written at an adult level No, not smutty, just smart and intelligent I m not putting much here regarding the subject or plot other than the Knights I ve mentioned But if you like stories about Knights Templar AND you like VERY well written literature, pick up this book or any others by Willocks, and you ll be well pleased

  5. John Wiltshire John Wiltshire says:

    I came to this novel from the author s outstanding work Green River Rising, which is one of the most memorable books I ve ever read Haunting hardly captures the effect it had on me So when I read that this was a book about the Knights of St John defending Malta by the same author who wrote such a powerful novel about a contemporary prison riot I was intrigued And how timely, a novel about the defence of European civilization Yes, this is the 1500s, but times, apparently, don t change all tha I came to this novel from the author s outstanding work Green River Rising, which is one of the most memorable books I ve ever read Haunting hardly captures the effect it had on me So when I read that this was a book about the Knights of St John defending Malta by the same author who wrote such a powerful novel about a contemporary prison riot I was intrigued And how timely, a novel about the defence of European civilization Yes, this is the 1500s, but times, apparently, don t change all that much I m 11% in and have very mixed feelings about the book Some of it is superb, but it s extremely verbose and overblown as well Bodices and swooning and golden stallions and crimson dresses and beryl eyes and Game of Thrones on steroids, and that s pretty exhausting to read at times But for all that I m quite caught up in the tale and will persevere I ll update when done.20% in and I m not letting Radulf read this book A whole heartbreaking chapter about the slaughter of the dogs on Malta before the siege The Head of the Order of St John determined that the barbarians would not reduce them to eating dogs and rats, and so to prevent this he calls for a total cull of dogs on the island His own beloved hunting dogs killed by his own hand first It s almost too painful to read, but such powerful writing too I am seriously caught up in this story now, possibly real life mirroring fiction mirroring real life a little too much for comfort though The brave Christian defenders of the tiny army are facing overwhelming odds60% in now and so grateful I gave this book a chance My mother lived in Malta as a child my father was stationed there for many years, and I went there in my early 20s, so I have extremely fond feelings for the island I haven t read anything that has stirred my blood like this book has for quite a long time I ve never read such accurate, honest, brutal descriptions of war in any other novels, and I ve made a bit of a study of military books Brutality, yes, beyond comprehension, but where this book is so astounding is the way the author also captures the transcendent bravery, the heroism, the glory of it all that has drawn men to war in every age And to their religions, come to that I highly recommend this novel to anyone who watched the Lord of the Rings movies or read the books and really only enjoyed the epic battles such as at Helm s Deep and Minas Tirith and wished those scenes could have gone on for longer This novel is thousands of pages of a siege that makes Helm s Deep read like a walk in the park Sure, there are quieter moments with some women doing boring things with musical instruments and dresses, but if you skim those pages the Knights of St John will steal your heart or make you wish you d never left the army and could rejoin I ll update when fully done.Finished, and very glad I read this amazing novel Highly recommened

  6. eric eric says:

    I was really disappointed with this book It s essentially a Harlequin romance with a heavy dose of graphic violence Willocks is clearly a very bright man, but his writing is schmaltzy, to say the least Try this on for size Tannhauser compliments Carla Carla felt her cheeks burn She felt inadequate to the compliment and to acknowledge it seemed improper A sense of sin clenched inside her Such fears and doubts had hedged her life for as long as she could remember Yet in these few momen I was really disappointed with this book It s essentially a Harlequin romance with a heavy dose of graphic violence Willocks is clearly a very bright man, but his writing is schmaltzy, to say the least Try this on for size Tannhauser compliments Carla Carla felt her cheeks burn She felt inadequate to the compliment and to acknowledge it seemed improper A sense of sin clenched inside her Such fears and doubts had hedged her life for as long as she could remember Yet in these few moments he d blown through all that dust like a wind throught a long unopened room.She said, Do you believe in magic The characters are cliche to the extreme The protagonist, Tannhauser, is a battled scarred, highly skilled warrior who has sworn off violence until his friends and a damsel are threatened Yet there is darkness and emotional vulnerability lurking just underneath his hard appearancee How many times have we seen this If you really like mawkish romance and violence, then you ll likely enjoy this book Otherwise, I d suggest reading something else

  7. Henry Henry says:

    I am torn between giving four stars and five The language and vocabulary are exquisite It is only the incessant warring that makes one weary in the reading The slaying and butchery would have beenstriking had it not gone on and on and on and on.The book relates the true tale of how the island of Malta the stronghold of the Christian Knights who call themselves The Religion was besieged by the Ottoman hordes The fictitious tale that runs parallel with this battle is about a man, Mat I am torn between giving four stars and five The language and vocabulary are exquisite It is only the incessant warring that makes one weary in the reading The slaying and butchery would have beenstriking had it not gone on and on and on and on.The book relates the true tale of how the island of Malta the stronghold of the Christian Knights who call themselves The Religion was besieged by the Ottoman hordes The fictitious tale that runs parallel with this battle is about a man, Mattias Tannhauser, who has agreed to help Contessa Carla La Penautier to find her long lost bastard son He sailed with her from Sicily to Malta at the time of war in search of the son There is great adventure and a lot of thrills Tim Willocks has done impeccable research and relates the story with great authority Tim Willocks shows us the madness of religion to incite war, where each of the two sides believe they are the hand of God and the enemy is of Satan Very interesting indeed It is conducive to critical thought

  8. Jane Jane says:

    This was most interesting as to the time period 16th century Knights of St John Hospitallers enduring the siege by the Ottoman Turks under Suleiman the Magnificent on the Island of Malta Enter our protagonist, Mattias Tannhauser, the larger than life picaresque hero and soldier of fortune As a former Janissary, Tannhauser can inflitrate the Turkish camp as necessary The battle scenes were very good however they were much too graphic in places too much mention of body parts and b This was most interesting as to the time period 16th century Knights of St John Hospitallers enduring the siege by the Ottoman Turks under Suleiman the Magnificent on the Island of Malta Enter our protagonist, Mattias Tannhauser, the larger than life picaresque hero and soldier of fortune As a former Janissary, Tannhauser can inflitrate the Turkish camp as necessary The battle scenes were very good however they were much too graphic in places too much mention of body parts and bodily functions I learned much of the Janissaries and their way of life I was glad to see that not every Turk was presented as a villain The conclusion of the book was most satisfying This is the first novel of a projected trilogy on Tannhauser I feel that any sequels will be anticlimactic and unnecessary

  9. Ned Ned says:

    This one is a bit too long but to tell you the truth I could not put it down An ex Janissary and adventurer takes up the challenge of finding a beautiful Maltese countess s illegitimate son on Malta just as the Ottomans begin their legendary siege of the Mediterranean island and commence a titanic struggle with the ruthless Knights of St John The battle scenes are so sickening that they must be true to life, and the intrigues involving the inquisitions, the Ottomans, the knights of St John a This one is a bit too long but to tell you the truth I could not put it down An ex Janissary and adventurer takes up the challenge of finding a beautiful Maltese countess s illegitimate son on Malta just as the Ottomans begin their legendary siege of the Mediterranean island and commence a titanic struggle with the ruthless Knights of St John The battle scenes are so sickening that they must be true to life, and the intrigues involving the inquisitions, the Ottomans, the knights of St John and sundry other parties are relentless A really great, fat read

  10. Bryn Hammond Bryn Hammond says:

    From the sublime to the ridiculous But I figure the sublime earns four stars, without taint from ridiculous content You don t get sublime often, do you Has a big dose of swashbuckler When the swashbuckler s in the cockpit this isn t real feel historical, because Mattias Tannhauser has been everywhere, can do everything I was comfortable with that, I ve swashbuckled of old, the secret is don t try too hard to believe It srealistic when it comes to the war, and most of the book is war From the sublime to the ridiculous But I figure the sublime earns four stars, without taint from ridiculous content You don t get sublime often, do you Has a big dose of swashbuckler When the swashbuckler s in the cockpit this isn t real feel historical, because Mattias Tannhauser has been everywhere, can do everything I was comfortable with that, I ve swashbuckled of old, the secret is don t try too hard to believe It srealistic when it comes to the war, and most of the book is war, and that s where he lifts to the sublime He goes for broke on the writing But if ever there s a time to overwrite other reviewers say that How else to paint for us mad hell on earth, as is his intention, other than by his wild similes Like this, like that as he stretches for a phantasmagorical similar Besides, if he didn t, he d only have his human pudding to talk about, and that would wear I took the graphic depiction in my stride, never grossed out, did not suspect him of exploitation and I can t tell you why, when I not infrequently complain about cheap violence in histfic Don t know you can possibly getviolent than this one, but it s done right for me As we went along I began to often think of WWI, I was transported back to my WWI Lit class, perhaps the atmosphere or the intention was like that protest literature On the other hand he doesn t scrimp on the allures of war, the gallantry, the glory, the strange exhilarations at an earlier stage I admired the book for that, for not being a 21st century anti war tract This novel, yes, has a stab at tackling religious war, I came to feel, as we saw sides and further sides to the subject I liked La Valette, the head Knight of St John, even though he s a crazed old loon the knights of the Baptist were magnificent, the Turks were magnificent, I knew I d fight for either cause, and Tannhauser, who tries not to be swept away, watches the glamour, of war, heroism, religion both the glamours and the horrors absolutely presented in this book Then there are the bad bits Badder than I can politely say is the romance Think of the worst of romances With the indulgent fantasy of a guy And hopelessly, hopelessly sexist That s a pity, because when Carla is away from Mattias she has a story of her own, in the hospital these are the Hospitallers, sworn to serve the poor , who call the sick our lords a story that moved me deeply The other woman, Amparo, seemed unusual at first until she hooked up with Mattias, then she sank without a trace for the rest of the book We have a sublime scene on the horror and the pity of war Next we have a scene torn from a trashy romance What a drop I felt like the Moslems they hanged one a day, dropped from the castle walls The strongest section, I thought, was the Maltese Iliad the final drama was too melodrama

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