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When First I Met My King

(The Arthur Quartet #1)

3.99  ·  Rating details ·  173 ratings  ·  43 reviews
Once upon a time, there was a winter that wouldn’t end. And all that’s standing between the people of White Meadows and starvation is a young man called Lance.

He’s sixteen years old, and for all his courage and hunting skills, he’s running out of fight. His family has been wiped out in a border raid, and he’s drowning in loneliness. When strangers arrive at White Meadows,
Kindle Edition, 138 pages
Published September 30th 2017 by FoxTales Publications
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3.99  · 
Rating details
 ·  173 ratings  ·  43 reviews

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K.J. Charles
A lovely novella, or rather a Part One of the story, introducing Lancelot and Arthur. This retelling places the story in ancient British history while keeping the magic; it has a lovely folkloric feel and is grounded very deeply in the land. Blissful. A short but incredibly welcome diversion from now.
Ulysses Dietz
Oct 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
When First I Met My King (Book 1 of the Arthur Trilogy)
By Harper Fox
Published by the Author, 2017
Five stars

A new Harper Fox book is a great event in my life. So, if you’re looking for disinterested opinion, forget it. With this launch of her new trilogy, re-casting the legend of King Arthur and Sir Lancelot, Fox tackles a hoary tale as deeply entrenched in English culture as the legend of Robin Hood. I mention that, because that story has been wonderfully treated by J. Tullos Hennig as an epic f
Christmas arrived early for me this year when I heard Harper Fox was releasing an M/M version of the Arthur saga. I must admit I first squealed with delight. One of my favourite authors, one of my all time favourite stories, what more could a boy from Cornwall who has grown up with all the magic and mystery of the Pendragon Tale wish for? I must admit that I have probably read almost all retellings of this story and seen all the various film versions, of which there are many. Some good, some not ...more
Dec 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
I was sucked in!

Harper Fox is a master at describing place and setting. When I read her book, I feel like I am there, that I can see, smell, taste and feel all that her characters can.

On this take on the legend of Arthur, we see the world through Lance’s eyes. He finds himself and his village in dire straights after nearly starving to death over the winter and no spring on the horizon.

Arthur is riding through the land, acquiring supporters for his campaign to unify the land of Briton. He wants L
4.25 stars from me, for this the first in Harper's own take on the Arthurian legends of Arthur, Lancelot, Merlin and all that goes with it. This particular story is from Lance's [or Tertius, meaning third son] POV, and describes the magical meeting with Artorius [Arthur], Ector and Gaius in the wilds of Vindolanda, after a particularly brutal winter. As usual, her descriptive powers are outstanding and you can almost feel the magic swirling in the air.

***For anyone who wants to totally immerse t
⚣❣☙ Michaelle ❧❣⚣
4.5 Stars

It's probably no surprise that I am a huge fan of almost everything Harper Fox writes...and once again, she's penned a story that had me completely enthralled from the first chapter.

From The Sword in the Stone to Merlin, King Arthur, The Once & Future King, Connecticut Yankee, Camelot, Spamalot & The Mists of Avalon (even Black Knight and almost all of those last two seasons of Stargate: SG1!!)...well, there's very little I haven't watched, read or listened to when it comes to t
Oct 21, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: historical, m-m, sf
Nice book. Could've been longer, but it's a good start to a series.

Alas, the Latin was wrong -- there's a strict formula to how you write letters in Latin, which the author appeared not to know (it's one of those cases of not knowing what you don't know): you don't start "dear whoever" like you do in English (carissime Tertie, which is indeed the vocative, so yes, that's right as far as it goes, but you don't start your letter in the vocative like an English speaker would), but instead you put t
Nov 05, 2017 rated it liked it
An enjoyable introduction into the lives of 16 year old Lancelot and Arthur and how they first met. Looking forward to the next instalment which I believe is due December.
Liz Jacobs
Oct 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This was really, really lovely. I wasn’t sure what to make of it at first and had a bit of a difficulty getting into it, but after a certain point it drew me in as Fox’s books always do. It’s so lovely and evocative and warm and filled with love and light. That’s the best way I can describe it right now. Just really lovely. I can’t wait for the next one.
Lisa The Novel Approach
Oct 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: historical, legend
I’ll be the first to admit I’m far from an expert on Arthurian legend. What I know could fit on the head of a pin and might be mostly gleaned from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Or, at least some Hollywood-izations of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. Which, to say, is unreliable at best and inaccurate at worst. While I can’t declare with authority that author Harper Fox is following the legends to any degree of faithfulness, I can say that the introduction to Arthur and Lance in ...more
Once upon a time there was a king. Once upon a time there was a king, and his kingdom was an abandoned fort and twenty bare acres of moorland, far and away in the north of Britannia, shadowed by Hadrian’s great Wall. Vindolanda, the Romans had called it. The fair meadows.
Harper Fox has birthed an exquisite reimagining of the Arthurian legend. We first meet young Lance, the young king of Vindolanda, who inherited the title the night his entire family was killed in a Pict raid. Lance's mother El
Sep 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Harper Fox is a wonderful storyteller, bringing to life ancient or modern times with poetry woven from her words. I've read a number of versions/interpretations of Arthurian legend over the years. Harper's latest version focuses on Arthur and Lance, and deftly mixes an historically plausible story with magic. Their early days are bittersweet, young love shadowed by the weight prophecy places on the two boy-men. (I'm also quite fond of her short contemporary story, Winter Knights.) Looking forwar ...more
Tori Thompson
5 heart review for Love Bytes Reviews! Review to follow soon...

A copy of this book was provided in exchange for an honest review. This review was originally posted at Love Bytes Reviews, please visit to see this and many more reviews, interviews, and giveaways!

Ok. So I have to start this by saying I am the proud owner of over 100 books about King Arthur… I have gotten past my obsession and haven’t been reading much for the last few years, but I am a big fan of anything A
Abi Walton
Jan 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: history, lgbt, mythology
I wanted to read this novella because I was hoping it was going to be as enchanting and captivating as J Tullos Hennig's Wode Series which tells the tale of Robin Hood and his relationship with Gamelyn over five books. And although Fox writes well, it didn't captivate me as much as I hoped and I think this was because of its length and the time span. With a story like this, I believe when re-imagining a legend as integral as King Arthur you need to take time over the legend, the characters and t ...more
Oct 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I'm at fault. I don't have think I have the ability to properly praise Harper Fox and this retelling of the Arthurian legend. This is a novella length first of a three part series and the wait for the second part will be interminable.

The author weaves color and light and shadows masterfully while infusing new energy into a centuries old tale. The words chime and ring. They paint glorious vistas. They spark and sizzle and dance.

This legend in the hands of Harper Fox is elevated to myth linking
Feb 22, 2018 rated it liked it
2.5 rounded up because this is well written. I hate it when people say " This is good but I just couldn't get into it and I don't know why". How lame is that? And here I am doing the same thing.
Harper Fox is for me the Queen of m/m (maybe because I found her first, but still: she Rules). A few of her titles just don't work for me, and this is one.
Still, if you like Harper and Arthur you should definitely check this one out.
Oct 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: gromance
I've read many of the Arthurian classics but trust Harper Fox to spin her own lovely version of this familiar story. It's a tale that evokes warmth, summer and love and I can't wait to see what happens next.
Taid Stone
Oct 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
In some ways, it reminds me of Marion Zimmer Bradley's Mists of Avalon, but in a more concise form, one that follows tradition less, allowing Fox to come up with new language to explain common names like Lancelot. It is enjoyable and a good set up for the next story.
Oct 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
Ohhhh, when she’s good she’s so good. This is restrained, careful writing, and makes the Arthurian legend new again.
Lena Grey
Dec 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
“Lately all my thoughts have gone to you...Sometimes I feel just a word away, you'll say: “Oh how I miss you too”... Only your eyes could know the way that I feel and how much I need you now with me.. Is this the way it's meant to be? Don't be afraid to put your heart on the line. I'll take you where I know you belong...Young love hold on.” ~ Air Supply

Lance, of ‘When I First Met My King’ by Harper Fox, is dangerously near the point of giving up until he meets Arthur (Art). From that point on, t
Joyfully Jay
Oct 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: jay
A Joyfully Jay review.

4.25 stars

When I First Met My King is Harper Fox’s engaging take on Arthurian legend. It is the first of a planned trilogy, and this story gives us the opening of the tale as young Lance and Arthur meet and connect fiercely.

The story is told with a very distinct style that almost has a “storyteller” feel. There is a strong narration that describes events in a way that really plays nicely off the Arthurian legend. I’ll admit that at first I had a bit of hard time settling i
Tanwen Cooper
Dec 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I very much enjoyed this take on the Arthurian legend which centres around a romance between Arthur and Lancelot (or Lance o'lough, as he is here). It went back to the original Roman roots of the tale, rather than the Medieval take most of us recognise. It had a very balladesque, fairy tale quality to it, which I quite liked though took a bit of getting used to. It very much reminded me of The Song of Achilles, another book I loved.

This is really the first third of a novel that's been split in 3
Jan 08, 2019 rated it liked it
3.35 stars

Man, I can't believe how much everyone loved this book. (which is awesome, I'm just picky). The novelty of taking king arthur/camelot/lancelot/excalibur/round tabling and all that, (which I am pretty unfamiliar with), I found impressive and cute-to base a carefully crafted story around those core English cultural pillars. The story works well for that. I suppose the part that didn't work for me was the low level of tension and draw. it was narrated more like a listing of events.

I read
Jan 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Suze by: A review on LoveBytes
The legend of King Arthur is one you kind of know from stories, films, tv etc but I have never read it so don’t know the full ins and outs of it all.
In this story, the first of three, Harper Fox has weaved her story magic in a great retelling that I really enjoyed and I think the three together will be wonderful. 4.5*
Lance and Arthur are young men when they meet (16) up in the wild borderlands of Vindolanda amid the ruins of Hadrian’s great wall. As expected the scene setting is such that you co
Arch Bala
I’ve to tell you though that prior to reading this, I’ve no clear background on the legends of Arthur, Lancelot all and I’ve only watched a couple of films, seen a bit of Merlin and read a few fan fiction which are all salacious in nature. Hah!

But hey, I am a huge, huge fan of Harper Fox so I’d eat up anything she offers. This story is actually kind of cute. I immediately fell for our two young adult protagonists. Lance is adorable with all his naivety and Arthur is plain riot! I loved that they
Nov 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
That scream you just heard?

That was me yelling in frustration that this book had ended and I couldn’t go out and buy the whole series. Harper Fox brings the same lyrical prose and ability to immerse the reader into the world she’s showing. I’m an avid lover of Arthurian legend and am particularly fond of Bernard Cornwell’ s and Mary Stewart’s versions, but this latest offering is equal to those. Tertius, or Lance of the lough (Lancelot) meets his beloved Artorius when they are both teenaged boys
Oct 02, 2017 rated it liked it
I'm not sure if the world needs more British origin stories right at this moment in time, but I've had a nostalgic fondness for Arthurian tales since reading the Mists of Avalon as a kid, so I'm gonna go with it.

This is only the first part of three, and yet it is clear this retelling won't be an epic like Avalon. It's nevertheless a sweet, interesting start and I'm looking forward to seeing how the story develops - what will happen when Guinevere enters the picture? I'm ready for some epic hear
Feb 13, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: glbtq, sci-fi-fantasy
Not sure how I felt about this. Giving it 3 stars until I read the rest of the trilogy. Some beautiful moments, especially as Lance comes to terms with the loss of his family, but the relationship with Arthur was basically a case of InstaLove that has yet to be tested (and I'm trusting that will happen in the ensuing episodes). I'm not a huge fan of this Arthur legends, so maybe I'm just not the right target audience.
Jen Drummond
Oct 13, 2017 rated it it was ok
I wanted to love it but it felt like too much trying to be said in too little time. I usually love the myths and folklore weaved into Harper Fox's stories but in this case I just couldn't get into it.
Nov 03, 2017 rated it liked it
3.5... maybe it will be turned up with the next books...
A lovely novella that gave me a new taste of the Arthurian legends and a wonderful feeling of that world of old myths and nature.
I'll stay tuned up for the next books!
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The Backlot Gay B...: When First I Met My King, by Harper Fox 1 11 Oct 11, 2017 06:14PM  
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Harper Fox is an M/M author with a mission. She’s produced six critically acclaimed novels in a year and is trying to dispel rumours that she has a clone/twin sister locked away in a study in her basement. In fact she simply continues working on what she loves best– creating worlds and stories for the huge cast of lovely gay men queuing up inside her head. She lives in rural Northumberland in nort ...more

Other books in the series

The Arthur Quartet (3 books)
  • The Dragon's Tale (The Arthur Quartet, #2)
  • The Greenwood and the Grail (The Arthur Quartet #3)