The Forge of Christendom by Tom Holland
The Force of Christendom by Tom Holland is a weighty tome, both in size and material depth. I do believe that had I read this book at an early age, religion, as I know and observe it would have been forsaken.
The wars, the obstacles, the greed, the urge for power are readily presented in this book. Religion, as we may know it now, was not entirely about holy sanctimony and goodwill to all. Much is devoted to a Preface, Timeline, Notes and a lengthy Bibliography in order to allow the reader to follow through in the year 1,000 and events that followed.
The book starts out with an almost impossible trek through mountains and hazardous trails. Not for the sake of devout religion, but it is done to achieve power status. It expresses the fears of a medieval society and how it regenerated into modern day religion. The reader gets good insight into the obstacles that had to be overcome.