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The Legends of King Arthur and his Knights
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The Legends of King Arthur and his Knights

3.78 of 5 stars 3.78  ·  rating details  ·  2,117 ratings  ·  73 reviews
ebook, 217 pages
Published October 5th 2010 by Uplifting Publications (first published 1485)
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Aug 26, 2014 Sarah rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: NOBODY
Shelves: fantasy, kindle, dnf
I have this affliction. If I start a book, I HAVE to finish it. All my life, pretty much. I'm not sure I remember when I last (or ever) didn't finish a book. Until now.

All my knowledge of the Arthurian legends is hearsay or pop-culture interpretations, so when I bought a Kindle and saw all the classics I could get for free, I jumped right on this one as a chance to get some more "original" references to King Arthur in my cultural experiences. Oh, how I wish I hadn't bothered.

Firstly, the writing...more
The story itself is pretty dull: fight a battle, do great deeds, slay the enemy, rescue a damsel or escape from an evil sorceress, fight another battle, do great deeds, slay the enemy, go hunting or jousting, fight another battle...

There's little character development. The men are pretty much all brave and heroic and little more, and the women are virtually all either fair maidens in need of rescue or enchantresses trying to do something awful. The story doesn't really develop either. Arthur bec...more
Ben Hilburn
I've always wanted to read the King Arthur tales, and this appeared to be the "real original" set of stories, passed down hundreds of years ago and finally recorded for posterity.

Unfortunately, I have this problem where once I start a book I feel like I have to finish it, even if it's killing me. These stories are atrocious.

The one lesson from this book is that if anyone ever complains that "chivalry is dead" or wishes for the return of "chivalry", they have clearly never read this book. Apparen...more
Andrew Obrigewitsch
I'm going to be charitable and give this 2 stars. These stories may have been entertaining 400 years ago, but literature has greatly advanced, and societally has advanced from being mostly illiterate to highly literate.

These stories may be fun to read one a night to your kids, but when done rapidly they wear on one, the characters have no personality and the action consists of sentence after sentence of who smote who with their sword, and then at the end a helm gets cleaved in two, rinse repeat...more
Barb Middleton
Harumph. I didn't expect that. I've read so many books based on the Arthurian legend that I thought it would be a sword and sorcery fantasy plot with the character development of King Arthur. Scrap that thought. Character development takes a back seat to a series of chain-linked mini adventures connected to the knights of the Round Table fighting battles or single combats. King Arthur is hardly even in it. Or Merlin for that matter. The sword and the stone, the quest for the Holy Grail, and the...more
It is good to read one of the sources that inspired later renditions. I am depressed to hear some disrespecting the story because they have trouble with an older style of writting. Folks, this is the bedrock and foundation of the later tales which have been such a mine for later authors. (That is, grist for the mill.) This is that which inspired the later tales, if you can't see what inspired the authors of later ages, then perhaps you lack the deeper vision.
This book is a retelling of Malory’s Le Morte D’Arthur and was first published in 1862. It includes many of the stories from Malory’s book, including sections dedicated to Sirs Gawain, Gareth, Lancelot, and Tristan. Having read Malory and other Arthurian texts, these stories were not new to me, but still made me smile. It was like visiting an old friend.

There are always parts that mystify me as a modern reader, like how many times knights will ride their horses so long and so hard that the hors...more
I had a love/hate relationship with this book.

First, let me say that I listened to this as an unabridged audiobook. The narration was terrific and the performance was very good. But the story had issues.

I understand that this was a classic book, with language from another time. But the wording was painful. Nearly every battle sounded alike. In fact, if the word "smote" was removed, you'd lose a significant percentage of the book! The battles were frequently similar and seemed to add little to th...more
I did not enjoy this book at all, and that was a shame as I had longed to read the Arthurian legends for a while now. However, I found this book ponderous, over-written and at times insulting.

The author goes at great lengths to anglicise-Arthur which in itself is understandable as his legend has him as Britain's greatest king and that Camelot is traditionally in England.

However, what is not necessary is the demonization of the Welsh, Irish and particularly the Scots. As a Scotsman I found this h...more
It was kind of interesting to hear some of the stories of King Arthur and the Knight of the Round Table but at the same time there was a lot of 'they fought for a really long time and then one knight struck the on the head down too his shoulder' and 'there was a sword that no one could get for whatever reason (stuck in a stone, enchanted) except for the noblest/best/whatever knight'. These themes were a little monotonous for my liking.

In terms of genres for comparison I found myself comparing th...more
Tait Sougstad
If for nothing else, this was an interesting study of how the "golden age" of King Arthur's legendary realm was one of pseudo-Christian syncretism. A Jesus-ish vocabulary is used throughout, and his relics venerated, but without a connection to the actual Jesus of the Gospels. Magic and murder are sanctioned as Christened acts.

However, the reason this was such a page-turner was the hilarious chivalry that is so prevalent in the Masculinity-revival of young, American males these days. When the Ho...more
I really enjoy Arthurian stories, but this wasn't my favorite thing I have read. It took me much longer to get into than the "Once and Future King". It feels watered down. Many details are skipped or glossed over making the stories disconnected and less purposeful. I did like that it included more information from before Aurthur's birth and after Lancelot steals Guinevere.
kay (the desert bibliophile)
I'm normally a huge fan of anything King Arthur, Camelot or just plain medieval, but when it came down to this story I was more interested in just finishing towards the end. There is a lot of repetition, especially when the story involved a traveling knight coming across other knights. While interesting in the beginning, their fights and jousts start to become cookie cutter. I'm not sure if the Old English made the language of the book sound less appealing to me or if I was just bored with the s...more
In order to be a knight, one must look gorgeous, know how to fight, and love the lady and the lord or king. Please fight to the death and then ask the name of your opponent. When especially sorrowful, or happy, take the head of the slain person to court. When in great surprise or fear, swoon.

In order to be a lady, one must look gorgeous. If being compared to another lady, and she looks better, your head could come off right there, and by your husband. When in great surprise or fear, swoon.

I reco...more
Kim Landwehr
The story isa familiar tale of Western Literature. The story of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. Many of the characters are familiar, Arthur, Merlin, Lancelot, Lady Guinevere however there are many that I did not recognize. It is full of adventure, including wizards, enchantresses, giants, and even dragons, knights and damsels in distress. The way the women are portrayed in the story is my least favorite part of the story, they are either portrayed as weak and helpless or ungratef...more
Theresa Polmounter
Great adventure

For all of those who really want to leave the troubles of the world we live in.Read on and let yourself believe in fairness and good once again.
Beth Lewis
Another classic. It tells they story the way I've always heard it: Camelot, etc. Very straightforward but fun. I'm always a sucker for Arthur and his knights.
Ronna H. Kelly
King Arthur

I choose 5 stars because it's a good entertaining read for people of most ages
It's also interesting thing to know about and makes you want King Arthur to come back and have another story
Tom Connolly
I love classic stories of good versus evil, of heroic deeds, and there is a reason this is a classic. As a reader, I often grinned at the sense that those people who know this story only from Hollywood are missing out on some great stories. It is a shame that movies take the focus off the faith of the characters, the complexity of their emotions and interactions. Written as more a collection of stories, I would highly recommend this book as something to be read to little ones, maybe K4-2nd grade...more
I liked this book at the start. Reminded me of Errol Flynn's version of Robin Hood in the way it depicted "high adventure" and in the way they talked.

After a while, however, it got to be incredibly repetitive as one knight after another goes out on a quest, kills someone (often someone he used to know who has gone bad), rescues the girl, then comes back to Arthur's England as a hero. If you've read the first third of the book, you've read the rest of it.

The most interesting part to me was when A...more
Couldn't finish. It began okay, but got way too redundant. The first knight was praised to the high heavens: he was the best looking, the best horse rider, the strongest, the bravest, etc. His battles were like old westerns; he could slay 10 of the enemy before they could unsheath their swords. So when the next knight came along, how could he be made any better? Yet, he had to be. So in his battles, he could slay 20 of the enemy before they could unsheath their swords! And the next, 100! So fort...more
Edward Hetzler
A different telling of the Arthurian legend.

The writing is stilted and archaic. The book is a series of loosely related tales rather than a coherent story. Some of the tales are familiar, but many are not.

This version of the Arthurian legend deals more with the knights of the Round Table than King Arthur. It is interesting and less fairy tale like then the more well known Arthur legend.
#kingarthur #classic
I read this on a free version on my e-reader, which probably wasn't the best idea. Boring for most of it and it had consistent spelling mistakes -- Modred for Morded and Morgan for Morgana -- that bothered me to no end. Along with that was how a damsel always needed saving and some battle always was happening. Too repetitive for my liking. I don't know if it was just this book, but I plan on trying another sometime soon.
Mike Marlow
A good representation of the Arthurian legends, but a bit prone to exaggeration for my taste. If all of those battles had happened as Knowles tells, the entire population of Great Britain would have been wiped out thrice over. :-)
Although it is an incredible story and a lot of fun, I didn't give all the stars for this because I found it a little bit repetitive, with the use of the same words all the time. The story was a little bit confusing, but it is a good, fun read, that helped me understand the story better. The confusing part was who was who, it wasn't always well explained. Anyhow, it's fun! I recommend it!
A great reminder of the Arthur legends, old English phrasing and chivalry. I enjoyed listening to this, because I imagine the "original" stories were actually told/heard and not written/read. The 8 year old boy in me was satisfied. I want to be noble and loyal as Sir Lancelot, and to fight 20 knights from horseback and lop peoples heads off would be kind of cool too!
This is the last book I read aloud at bedtime nursing to William. While I admit that the story of Arthur and the Round Table knights is classic, I did not like how this version was written. Very repetitive and bland, lacking in real conflict and character development. It was like reading a summary of a novel.
It was a typical epic - a little repetitive and generally unbelievable. Still, I feel well prepped for starting other Arthur readings ("Once and Future King," you're up next...)
Terry Collins
A compilation of stories, not a single narrative, some are more interesting than others. Overall, roughly follows standard Arthurian folklore. It's not Old English, very few people could read Old English, just older English. btw, anon means "soon"--possibly the most used word in the book.
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Sir James Knowles was an English architect and editor.

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“Arise, Lord King, for the enemy is come; even Ambrosius and Uther, upon whose throne thou sittest—and full twenty thousand with them—and they have sworn by a great oath, Lord, to slay thee, ere this year be done; and even now they march towards thee as the north wind of winter for bitterness and haste.” 0 likes
“ing Vortigern the usurper sat upon his throne in London, when, suddenly, upon a certain day, ran in a breathless messenger, and cried aloud— “Arise, Lord King, for the enemy” 0 likes
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