Diane's Reviews > Arthur

Arthur by Stephen R. Lawhead
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's review
Sep 16, 2013

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bookshelves: kindle, fantasy, books-in-a-series, historical-fantasy, read-in-2013
Read from September 06 to 15, 2013

This is the third book in the Pendragon series, and (at last!) we come to the story of King Arthur.

The book begins with the teenage Arthur pulling the Sword of Britain from the stone in the churchyard, where it was embedded by Merlin years before. The story follows the years of Arthur putting down rebellions among petty British kings, establishing himself as High King of Britain, battling various barbarian hordes, and building the Kingdom of Summer. The book ends with the mortally wounded Arthur being transported to the Island of Avalon, which then disappears into the mist.

The book is divided into three parts, each using a different minor character to narrate a part of Arthur’s story from a different limited, first-person point of view. This wasn’t necessarily bad, but I don’t know that it was particularly beneficial, either. I just don’t know why the author chose to tell the story this way.

Also, there’s way too much detail given to battle scenes. The middle section of the book is filled with pages and pages detailing battles and the movement of soldiers and the layout of the field and the hacking off of body parts, etc. Ugh. Maybe it’s just me, but I had to force myself through this.

But then there’s not enough detail on the character of Morgian. In this version of the King Arthur story, Morgian’s character is bad: really, really bad. Pure evil, the Queen of Darkness, a liar and a murderer and a hater. But there is no good explanation of exactly why she hates. Arthur, High King of Britain, is destroyed by a chain of events set in motion by a witch because… because… because... Well, who knows why?

But it's not all negative. There were many nicely written parts here too. Three stars.

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