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The Sword and the Circle: King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table
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The Sword and the Circle: King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table (Legends of King Arthur #1)

3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  436 ratings  ·  34 reviews
Retells the adventures of King Arthur, Queen Guenevere, Sir Lancelot, and the other knights of the Round Table.
Paperback, 272 pages
Published November 1st 1994 by Puffin
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(showing 1-30 of 1,090)
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I don't know how this author is able to say SO MUCH in so few words. A lot happens quickly in this book, so you have many events and many characters over few pages, so you would think it would feel like there's a lack of depth. And yet somehow, with just a few words of dialogue, she is able to capture the essence of the character's soul, and you feel deeply for that character. I'm on page 70 and this book has already moved me to tears. And I was on the bus at the time! Inconvenient, but brillian ...more
I've always loved Rosemary Sutcliff's books, so probably I'm automatically biased towards this one. Actually, I found it a little hard to get into at first -- the first few chapters seemed very much like the first part of the Historia Regum Britanniae, except for children. Still, I gave it chance and though it was slower to get started for me than, say, The Eagle of the Ninth, it got to a point where I didn't want to put it down. It is recognisably for children, but at the same time there isn't ...more
Beautifully written. Sutcliff's writing continues to amaze and delight me. She has taken another classic and given it fresh life while maintaining the haunting mysteries of the story.
I read this along with my daughter for school. I figured it was going to be another one of those simplified stories that are written just for kids, but this book pleasantly surprised me. The writing was intricate and detailed. The author definitely knows how to paint a picture in your head. The stories themselves start to get repetitive. There's only so many ways a knight can go out on a quest and knock people off their horses. But the stories were just varied enough to keep me going just so I c ...more
Nov 12, 2011 Joan rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: folktale lovers, Sutcliff fans
I'll state upfront that one of my shelves does not really fit this title: historical fiction. However, it is the closest I have since I don't believe I read a lot of folk tales/lore type book. I'll add this shelf if I begin to notice this statement isn't true! I have always deeply admired Sutcliff. However, I was fairly disturbed after finishing Tristan and Iseult at how sexist the book was and started this one with some apprehension. However, it was never really an issue since the women are mos ...more

The recreation of ancient cultures serves as a favorite vehicle
for Rosemary Sutcliff, who has portrayed the ancient Celts and Romans in Britain. In this YA book she has swept away the mists of Avalon, thus allowing her readers the delightful privilege of observing the gradual creation of Arthuriana. Drawing upon an eclectic source base for inspiration she weaves a tapestry which mesmerizes those who admired the Golden Age which briefly flowered between the Rome and t
Sword and the Circle was a book about the adventures of many people. One of the recurring characters was Arthur, the legendary king of Camelot. He and his questing knights travelled around medieval England administering honorable justice. Sometimes gruesome but never sad, I might recommend this book if you like tales of heroic adventure.
that cute little red-eyed kitten
I would probably have liked this book much better had I read it as a kid. To me, it started off rather boring, but got better along the way. Wouldn't mind reading the other book(s) in the series. The Arthur legends are best known to me through Monty Pyhton, and somehow I feel that's not quite sufficient ;)
At first glance, this book seemed to be written for children; however the language used is old enough to make it a more difficult read than many adults are used to.
Unlike Sword at Sunset, this is Arthur played straight, i.e. heavily Mallory. I would think I'd be sick of Arthurian legend by now but this is still very fresh and enjoyable. Although I am by no means an Arthur scholar, this would be my recommendation for the traditional tales. (Disclaimer: I haven't read Mallory yet. Or Monmouth, for that matter.) Each tale retains a distinct flavor. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight in particular feels like something from the Mabinogion repackaged. (Oddly, it se ...more
Reading for the middle-grade book square on Books on the Night Stand reading bingo, I didn't have time to finish this before it went back to the library. I do hope to finish it one day, but I'll have to pick something else for my bingo square.
I'm a big fan of the legends of King Arthur in all their forms, but I couldn't get on with this at all. I found the style very boring and formulaic, and after the first couple of stories, couldn't be bothered to read any further. I can see why the author choose to write them like this - they come across as old fashioned stories or fairytales, but with little characterisation or descriptive writing, they just weren't that interesting.
I really enjoyed this book! It's written more like a chronicle than a novel, and it took me a couple of chapters to get into it. Once I did though, I was thoroughly swept up in the romance and excitement of the knights and their adventures. I think this book is actually right in the middle of a series, and it definitely doesn't end with the ending of Arthur and Camelot - that is yet to come. I look forward to completing the series!
I think this was a very interesting book. It shows alot of honor. The knights of the Round Table showed a lot of chivalry, and it was important for all knights to have. I think this book can help readers be more compliant with honor. Honor is very important in medivial times and today. I would recommend anyone to read this, but mostly to people that are interested in honor.
Sarah Rice
The first Arthurian book I read, this is played completely straight. It's a very good introduction for kids that doesn't belittle their intelligence or literacy, but doesn't get all Mary Stewart or Jack Whyte on them either.
Jason Garcia
i'm not really a fan of this book. it really feels like there are characters forgotton throughout the book. I'm not really a good reader so i would recommend this book who are good readers and can really keep track of the book.
I first found Rosemary Sutcliff when I picked up a copy of Eagle of the Ninth. Her style is very readable and I thoroughly enjoyed this retelling of Mallory's epic Arthurian tales.
Part of an Arthur trilogy. Sword in the stone meets First Knight and Monty Python. Found it very romantic, almost too mature for a younger audience. Great compilation of stories!
Probably the best straightforward telling of the King Arthur Legend for any person who needs a fast tutorial. First of three volumes.
Retelling of tales of King Arthur and the knights of the Round Table for children. OK, but not particularly distinctive.
Tony Wong
This book is kind of boring, and it is so hard to remember what happened inside. There is 261 pages.
Gwen Burrow
I haven't read many other versions of the Arthur legend to compare, but this one is excellent.
Read this with my sophomores this year.... Who knew King Arthur was fun!? I'm not even kidding.
a lot like king arthur but it goes into more detail. Mostly about the knights of the round table
Getting reacquainted with the varied knights and their exploits is the perfect summer read.
Love this author. Brings King Arthur and his Knight of the Round Table to life.
This is a great version of King Arthur, and illustrates the life of knights.
Jul 27, 2013 Emaly added it
Shelves: could-not-finish
This was too dry for me and too similar to the Malory version I read recently.
Jan 22, 2008 Crystal rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: 11+
Well-written King Arthur Stories for children.
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Rosemary Sutcliff was a British novelist, best known as a writer of highly acclaimed historical fiction. Although primarily a children's author, the quality and depth of her writing also appeals to adults, she herself once commenting that she wrote "for children of all ages from nine to ninety."

Born in West Clandon, Surrey, Sutcliff spent her early youth in Malta and other naval bases where her fa
More about Rosemary Sutcliff...
The Eagle Of The Ninth The Lantern Bearers Black Ships Before Troy The Silver Branch Sword at Sunset

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