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Merlin's Blade

(The Merlin Spiral #1)

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  485 ratings  ·  118 reviews
A strange meteorite.
A deadly enchantment.
And only Merlin can destroy it.

A meteorite brings a mysterious black stone whose sinister power ensnares everyone except Merlin, the blind son of a swordsmith. Soon, all of Britain will be under its power, and he must destroy the stone—or die trying.

MERLIN'S BLADE won the 2014 Silver Moonbeam Award in the YA Fantasy/Sci-Fi catego
Paperback, 432 pages
Published April 16th 2013 by Blink YA Books (HarperCollins)
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Average rating 3.87  · 
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Jill Williamson
Oct 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Merlin is the blind some of a blacksmith. When his friends and family become interested in the miracle stone that the druids are using to draw people away from King Uthur and his infant son Arthur, Merlin tries to stop them. He can sense that there is something evil about the stone. But can he destroy it before it’s too late?

I’m a big fan of epic fantasy, and there’s a lot in this book that’s praiseworthy. The setting and characters offer a vivid picture of the past. And Merlin is a tremendous p
Nov 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I was a bit skeptical of this book at first, because Merlin wasn't going to be a wizard and he's one of my favorite wizards in literature.

That said, I was totally blown away. Robert Treskillard manages to bring the character of Merlin to life in a fresh and powerful way that completely won me over by the end of chapter one. He also demonstrates an intimate familiarity with Arthurian Legend while not allowing that knowledge to hinder him from telling his own story in his own way. The committed A
D.J. Edwardson
Aug 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Merlin's blade is a unique take on the Arthurian legends. Told mostly from the perspective of Merlin as a young man on the cusp of adulthood, the story has a decidedly historical feel. One gets the sense that considerable research went into the writing of this book. And yet the characters are what really shine here.

Merlin is the scarred son of a blacksmith in this version of the tale. Though he has trouble seeing as a result of his injuries (he's half blind, really) he is a genuine hero. He stru
May 03, 2018 rated it liked it
Interesting concept, but I just had some trouble getting into it. Hopefully I'll read the rest of the series soon. ...more
Mar 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
I'm so glad I gave this a chance. The cover was quite off putting, for me, and totally doesn't match the tone of the book.

Anyway. It's historical fiction with a fantasy element mixed in, and it's set in Arthurian (or, like, 20 years earlier) Briton. But the great thing is that it's set the the Briton of the real Arthur, if he ever existed. It's Welsh(ish). And it's amazing.

The historical accuracy, more than anything, wowed me from the get-go. Most novels set in the pre-Great Schism West (especi
J.L. Mbewe
May 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
One word. EPIC.

Where do I even begin?

When I first heard about Merlin's Blade, the cover caught my eye. I started seeing it pop up all over cyberspace, and friends were raving about it. I added it to my to-read list. When the author offered a handful of copies for a read and share contest, I jumped at the chance.

Merlin. Just the name conjures up quite a lot of images. For me, he has been mostly connected to King Arthur. A second hand man, a supporting character. But not in this book. Most of us
Nov 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Merlin’s Blade is a beautifully unique look at the much loved and intriguing character called Merlin. This version focuses on a strong Christian background instead of the usual mystical pagan one that we so often see in the movies and read in books. My love for the Arthurian legend did not fail me even with this curious take. In fact, it has taken on a new level of reverend fascination for me as I walked down this new path of what ifs. I am eager to see what happens and how this fascinating new ...more
John Otte
Feb 22, 2013 rated it really liked it
In the interest of fairness, I received a free advance reader copy in return for a fair review.

This book tells the story of Merlin, but with an interesting twist. Merlin, the son of a smith and swordmaker, is blind after an attack by wolves. He tries to survive in spite of his shortcomings, but when a band of druids led by his step-grandfather appear in his village, things go badly. The druids have come for a powerful Stone, one that they believe can wrest control of Britain from Christ and retu
Nov 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
I have found a new favorite fantasy favorite in Merlin's Blade!

I've always enjoyed reading stories or watching movies and TV shows about King Arthur and his knights of the round table, but Merlin has always been my favorite legend. I especially love the Christian re-tellings of his legendary tale, so this book had a lot to live up to, and it definitely exceeded my expectations.

It was a bit slow to start, but by chapter five I knew that this book was totally for me! Merlin was a noble character
Adam Ross
Aug 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, fiction
A solid debut novel from Robert Treskillard. When a group of Druids bent on retaking Britain for the old ways bring a strange and powerful stone that fell from heaven to aid them, it forces th half-blind young Merlin to stand up for his beliefs and set in motion the great Arthurian legends of old. Treskillard is not content to simply rehash the old story, but actively takes his own unique approach to the ancient saga. Interesting characters and some strong prose work sets this one above the stan ...more
Zoe Scrivener
I loved Treskillard's voice, and his prose was masterful. I enjoyed his twists on the legend, and am anxious to see how the trilogy will play out. ...more
Andrew Miller
Jun 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
All is not well in the British village of Bosventor. With the appearance of a strange stone that sends forth blue fire, the Druidow have mounted a new offensive against the Christian population of the village. Merlin, the blacksmith’s son, is one of the few who is immune to the Stone’s influence, largely due to his partial blindness. But with so many falling to it, can Merlin save the village before it’s too late?

Set against the backdrop of the waning power of the Roman Empire, Merlin’s Blade i
Jan 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
A good story about the beginnings of Merlin and the Arthurian tales. I liked how Merlin had struggles and issues he had to deal with, making him a real human instead of just the wise man who advises Arthur. The author also really knew his ancient history so the language in which the characters spoke and the terms they used were authentic and believable but not over done so they were confusing. I also liked the development of all the other characters. Not sure how some people would feel about the ...more
Rebecca LuElla
Merlin's Blade (The Merlin Spiral, #1) by Robert Treskillard
Robert Treskillard

Merlin's Blade overcame my Arthurian Legend weariness.

The Story. Merlin is near-blind, with facial scars-hard circumstances for a teen. What's worse, he becomes the subject of bullying by the Magister's n'er-do-well sons. His one friend, an orphaned boy living with the monks in the abbey, opens the door to trouble when he "borrows" a wagon to help them complete their errands. On the way home, he stops to investigate who might be roasting chicken in the woods. Soon the whole
Victor Gentile
May 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Robert Treskillard in his new book “Merlin’s Blade” Book One in the Merlin Spiral Series published by Zondervan takes us into the life of Merlin.

From the back cover: Merlin’s Greatest Weakness Could Become His Greatest Strength

When a meteorite crashes near a small village in fifth-century Britain, it brings with it a mysterious black stone that bewitches anyone who comes in contact with its glow—a power the druids hope to use to destroy King Uthur’s kingdom, as well as the new Christian faith. T
Jun 19, 2013 rated it liked it
My Review
Songs of lament from a harp, visions, danger, flashbacks, prophecies, parables that rhyme…..this is what you’ll come across within these pages. I did not understand it all, but I was determined to keep up with Merlin’s story. Merlin is such a courageous young man and easy to like from the beginning. He is responsible, honorable, loyal, and constantly risking his life to save or intervene for the ones he loves. He is constantly judged, bullied, criticized, questioned, and doubted because
Dec 02, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy
First, I will tell you that I read quite a bit of this book, but not all. This is one of those few books that I have no idea what to rate. After the first few lines, I got so caught up in the story that I didn't want to put it down. I liked Merlin instantly and that feeling only grew as the story went on. He was such a good person. He was kind, nice, humble, a little self-conscious and shy, and just self-sacrificing. He always did the right thing. Nataleyna (I think I spelled that right) was al ...more
Lisa Godfrees
Jul 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I don't know if you're like me, but as a kid I was totally into Arthurian legend. The movie Excalibur, The Once and Future King by T.H. White, The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley, and my favorite at the time, the series by Mary Stewart (Crystal Cave, The Hollow Hills, The Last Enchantment, and The Wicked Day). So trust me when I tell you that Merlin's Blade is the best of all of these.

From the moment you begin reading Merlin's Blade, you know that you are in the hands of an expert, so y
William Crosby
Aug 26, 2013 rated it it was ok
After looking at several other reviews, I guess my perception of this book is different from most everybody else.

I did mostly like the story and I liked Merlin as a character. But this particular approach to the Christianity vs Druidism struggle in 300 AD or so got old for me fast.

The author portrays druidow as mostly filled with rage and vices and does not positively consider their interaction/reverence of nature or their amazing use of medicinal herbs (some of which are being rediscovered now)
Nov 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A strange meteorite.
A deadly enchantment.
And only Merlin can destroy it.

A meteorite brings a mysterious black stone whose sinister power ensnares everyone except Merlin, the blind son of a swordsmith. Soon, all of Britain will be under its power, and he must destroy the stone—or die trying.

This story is so intricate! So elegant! It is really a sophisticated book based off of both fantasy, legend, and history, to create a tale that is beyond fascinating!!
This is one of my favorite books I've read
Cheryl Carpinello
May 25, 2013 rated it really liked it
This was a little heavy on the battle between paganism and christianity for me. That said, the author does present some intriguing ideas on staples of the Arthurian legend. I would recommend this to other Arthurian lovers.
Jan 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book is a wonderful retelling of the classic King Arthur tale. Bringing spiritual warfare and God's power against it into the picture adds a magical feel while staying decently true to the real world. I can't wait to start the next one. ...more
Brittney Tyler
May 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
When it comes to characters, my favorite character is and always will be the sorcerer Merlin. I love how complex and intricate he is as a character and I have a minor obsession where I read every book about Merlin that I can get my hands on. During a recent trip to the library that my mom works at, I found another re-telling of the Arthur legend told through the perspective of my previously mentioned favorite character, Merlin. It is Merlin’s Blade by Robert Treskillard which tells the story of ...more
Mar 01, 2021 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: 14+
Recommended to Millay by: Church
Merlin's Blade is a little know allegorical fantasy that has quite a punch packed between the pages. Published by a press that I previously have not liked for its poor quality, Merlin's Blade was a pleasant surprise.

This book is written from multiple points of perspective. It mostly keeps within the main 3-7 characters, yet it does bounce around often. Merlin, Owain, and Garth were the main characters it stuck to, however. Though I liked many of the characters fairly well, Merlin and Owain were
Amanda Evans
Jun 03, 2020 rated it did not like it
What a pile of trash. I could hardly believe that something this rotten existed.  I actually had to check the publisher to make sure that it wasn't self-published or a vanity publisher. I cannot believe that this passed not just through the author but through an editor as well. It boggles my mind.

In my entire life, I have been unable to finish 2 books.  This book made it 3. I thought 'The rape of a 17-year-old girl' was going to be the worst book of the year until I read what I did of this boo
First Look:  This intrigued me because I tend to enjoy books involving the Arthurian legend.  Besides, the cover has a wolf on it, which is cool.  Is there a reason, though, why one of its eyes is a different color than the other?  Quig alert, quig alert, everybody!  Also, what is Merry doing on this cover?  Doesn't it look like him, reflected in the sword?  That was probably supposed to be Merlin, but, well, I kept imagining Merlin as Colin Morgan (there was pretty much nothing the author could ...more
Carissa Norris
Jan 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
I would actually rate this 4.5 stars if I could. I very much enjoyed this take on Merlin. I felt he was unique, especially making him mostly blind. Merlin was established very early on as a hero I wanted to follow and learn about. I cared about him every step of the way. My absolute favorite thing about him is a Christian take on him. After all, the Arthurian legends are steeped in Christian symbol. So many modern tales make Merlin thoroughly pagan, and it is nice to see someone take a different ...more
Chelsea Johnson
It was interesting getting to see the start of the Arthurian legend, from before Arthur was involved. Most tales always start with Merlin already around and everyone (sort of) knowing that Arthur is the true king, but you never really find out anything about Merlin. Usually it's just "he's a druid and he knows things".

Morganthu and his cult were strange, to say the least. I did think his ability to sway the people was helped a lot by the Stone (obviously). His relationship with Monda was surpris
Sep 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Y'know those books that have satisfying conclusions but at the same time it's the worst cliffhanger in the world because you must. know. what. happens. next. NOW.? Yeah, this book is one of them. XD

These were recommended by a friend, and since we were studying this time period in history, I decided to give them a try. Oh. My. Word. Yes, read this book. *nodnodnodnod*

It took me about twenty pages to get into it, but once I did, I was hooked--hooked to the last page. And after the last page, scram
Wow, what an incredible tale. I really loved the character conflict and their arcs, and how Treskillard wove in spiritual warfare and God's deliverance without feeling preachy at all. Not an easy thing to do. It gave the story so much depth, and I realized that through the darkness and the dismal struggles, light can be shown more powerfully. I was also really impressed with how deeply he made me feel. Anger, disappointment, sadness, shock, joy...right along with the characters. He wasn't afraid ...more
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I am the author of the Merlin Spiral book series based on the legends of King Arthur, published by BLINK YA Books.


MERLIN'S BLADE won the 2014 Silver Moonbeam Award in the YA Fantasy/Sci-Fi category, as well as the 2013 Grace Award.

Here is the website for my series:

Other books in the series

The Merlin Spiral (3 books)
  • Merlin's Shadow (The Merlin Spiral #2)
  • Merlin's Nightmare (The Merlin Spiral, #3)

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