Author Charles Gibson
October 13-22, 2014
Taking the Cross
Release date: October 1, 2014
at Köehler Books
Taking the Cross is a historical novel by Charles Gibson about the little-known crusade launched by the Roman Catholic Church against fellow Christians in France, a time of great religious turmoil and conflict.
In the Middle Ages not all crusades were fought in the Holy Land. A two-pronged threat to the Catholic Church was growing within Christendom itself and Pope Innocent III called for the crusade against heresy to eliminate both the Albigenses and Valdenses, two movements that did not adhere to Church orthodoxy.
Andreas, a knight who longs to go on crusade to the Holy Land, finds himself fighting against one in his French homeland. While Andreas wages war for the lives and religious freedom of his people, a battle rages within his soul.
Eva, a young woman of a new religious order, the Beguines, discovers a secret message within a letter about the death of her father in the Holy Land. As she learns more of her father, she is forced to confront the profound and perilous spiritual inheritance he has bequeathed to her. A legacy for which she must fight.
Hearing of the feats of Andreas, Eva senses her inheritance may lead her to him.
Filled with battles of the flesh and the spirit, Taking the Cross reveals a passionate aspect of Medieval times where some fought ardently for the freedom of others. [provided by the author]
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Charles Gibson first started reading about history and geography when he was seven.
He wrote his first short story at the age of nine.
He continues to read and write whenever he can.
Charles has spent many years researching the Middle Ages and the Crusades,
and has traveled to the Languedoc region in France.
He has combined the passions of history and geography and prose to finish his first novel, Taking the Cross.
It takes place during the summer of 1209 in France.
Charles Gibson has previously written for the inspirational book series God Allows U-Turns
as well as for a Minnesota newspaper.
He also works as a project manager for a medical device company.
He also loves travel writing,
and would like to start his own magazine some day about travel as a journey through life.
The dominant theme of his writing is freedom.
“It was for freedom that Christ set us free;
therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.”
He lives in Minnesota with his lovely wife and energetic sons.
He can be reached at cg [at] charlesgibson [dot] net
Send him your questions and comments.
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Gibson creates a riveting story, full of suspense during a bloody and religiously turbulent time. Taking the Cross will appeal to a wide audience – history, christian fans, ALL will enjoy a well presented story highlighting the Albigensian Crusade.
VERDICT: Brilliantly weaving together major elements of French Medieval culture, Taking The Cross makes you relive an essential page of the 12th century fight between the established Christian powers and the so-called heretics. Packed with powerful symbols and images, action and suspense, it will actually teach you history while leading you on a fast paced adventure.
The dynamic of the story line was perfectly intertwined with the history of the crusades. I really enjoyed this book and look forward to reading more in the series!
The storyline was easy to follow and the characters were well written. While I was reading it I actually could picture the events. I give this book a 4/5.
I really like the authors writing style, the story flowed smoothly with enough descriptions that I was able to visualize the setting and feel of the time period.
This is Charles Gibson’s debut and also the start of a series, definitely an author I will be reading more of.
Gibson gives his readers a taut eclipse of a narrative that begs you to delve further into his next writings in order to glimpse the full scope of what he is giving us to read. This is an incredible debut novel because the suspense continues to heighten and pull you deeper behind the veil of what you once thought the story was writ about, rather than what is starting to become revealed at its conclusion.
Overall, this Taking the Cross has several satisfying personalities: a tale of heroism in battle, a spiritual travelogue through time, or an historical look at one of France’s lesser known regions.