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The Book of Mordred
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The Book of Mordred

3.7  ·  Rating details ·  1,696 Ratings  ·  99 Reviews
Dark forces are taking hold in the kingdom of Camelot: King Arthur struggles to keep his knights in line as they steadily divide themselves into factions; the great Merlin has vanished at the hands of his lover and pupil, Nimue; wizards all over the countryside battle for whatever measures of power they can find. At the center of the maelstrom stands Keira, an innocent gir ...more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published June 18th 2007 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published September 12th 2005)
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Jackie "the Librarian"
Apr 10, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: ages 12 and up
Before Mordred challenged Arthur for the leadership, he was a knight of the Round Table, headstrong and sarcastic, but also courageous and skilled in battle.
We see Mordred from three women viewpoint’s: Alayna, whose daughter Kiera is kidnapped for her visions, the sorceress Nimue, and Kiera herself. In the last segment, Mordred and his brothers invade Guinevere’s chambers to reveal what everyone already knows – the Queen and Lancelot are lovers. Guinevere is sentenced to death, Lancelot rescues
Sep 19, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
I'd rate this one a 7 out of 10.
It was simplistic and even though I know it's targeted for young adults, many teen readers could handle more complexity and more thorough character development....heck, I loved Mists of Avalon when I was 15.

That said, I've always found Mordred interesting and felt he
got a bum rap. It wasn't his fault how he was conceived or how he
was treated as a child....I mean we are talking serious unhealed trauma,
adolescent angst, and major Daddy and Mommy issues here!!
Thursday Bram
Mar 18, 2009 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 24, 2014 rated it did not like it
I checked this out because I often like Vande Velde's books, and I hoped she could come up with a new twist on this tale--you know, make it readable and everything. Nope, no such luck. If anything, her version is even more depressing than the Mort d'Arthur, which is saying something. Give it a miss. If you want to feel depressed after a violent book, read War and Peace. The writing is better.
Apr 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I finished "The Book of Mordred" by Vivian Valde and now I have all these conflicting feelings. If I should give it a vote I would give it 4/5 or 3.8/5 just for the ending because even if I liked most of it I didn't like the very ending.
And now, spoilers.
(view spoiler)
Sep 10, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Tre Willis
Oct 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
The book of mordred is a great book there are three main characters there a bunch of action its about a girl named alayna and while she is making bread three knights bust into her house and take her daughter Alayna travels through the woods all the way to camlot she talks to the king so she can
Jun 05, 2017 rated it liked it
It was a good read. I enjoyed following Mordred through his 3 different quests that led up to the climax. I liked how each of the women involved in each of the quests fates were all intertwined with Mordred and the fate of Camelot.

Though it had all the qualities of a medieval that we all want in a tale of knights and the round table, I wished to have more character development from Mordred. Because it was never told from his point of view, only from the 3 ladies, we never got the insight of Mord
Jun 17, 2017 rated it liked it
I read Mary Stewart's Merlin Trilogy, and after that I have been obsessed with the Arthurian Legend. It's hard, however, to grow to love characters in one book, then read about them in another and have them be completely different. So, though this book is good by itself, after the Merlin Trilogy I was somewhat disappointed. I love that there are so many strong women in this book, but I was really disappointed with Arthur. He was so mild, without any passion, yet he was still willing to have his ...more
Bridget Hanks
May 12, 2017 rated it liked it
I read this book years ago in middle school and absolutely loved it. It's sat on my bookshelf since then and I just revisited it. It doesn't hold the same charm it held then... I would definitely still recommend it to young fans of magic and medieval, but the story didn't hold enough fullness for me. The characters weren't as rich as I remembered, the plot not nearly as well-woven. The romance was consistently hinted at, but not brought to a satisfactory conclusion. Perhaps I've just grown up to ...more
Jul 20, 2017 rated it liked it
Parts one and two were the best. In part three, motives became muddled and the main character was connected weakly to the main plot. I cared most about the characters in part one.
Throughout the whole book, Mordred would have been more likeable if less time had been spent setting him up as attractive and mysterious. That said, I liked his introduction, and his character was interesting.
The setting and atmosphere could have been stronger, but the attention given to minor characters was interestin
Jun 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I loved the writing style if this! It reminded me a lot of Robin Hood. I guess they both have that same sort of care free but serious children's book. And as the story progresses it gets decidedly less carefree. I loved this other look at the Arthurian legend, this time coming from Mordred's side of things. I suppose they did this in Merlin as well. I really liked Kiera's character. She was the right mix of the timidness a young woman/girl who I think is realistic for her time and her instincanc ...more
Lucy Takeda
Sep 29, 2017 rated it liked it
I have read numerous versions of Camelot. Several mention the snake causing the final battle, and that Mordred wasn't truly evil. This novel focuses on Keira, a young girl with a touch of magic that spends time with the Arthur and Mordred clans.
There is an abundance of time, character, and location jumps in the novel that often left me trying to figure out what was going on where and when. It's an interesting viewpoint; I think a longer novel with more background might have been a better option.
Maddie Senator
Aug 25, 2011 rated it it was ok
I usually really enjoy Velde's books, and I love Arthurian legend, so I thought I'd like this one. It is supposed to uncover the background story of Mordred, which was never revealed by Sir Thomas Malory in his book Le Morte D'Arthur. The book is split into three parts, one told by Merlin's lover Nimue and the other two by the random characters Alayna and her daughter Kiera, the latter of whom has inherited magical ability from her late father. The first section started out promisingl
Jan 21, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 07, 2012 rated it it was ok
Hooray another book about Mordred... or so you'd think. Let's get right to it, shall we?

The main monster in this book is the lack of character development on Mordred's part. You'd think the gals would get into some intimate relationship with him, but then, there's nothing. You've fallen into a pit trap. His descriptions are mainly based on what the girls say about him. His actions are basically those of the average, introverted man. He's just a girl's fantasy. Actually, three girls' fantasy.

Cover: I’ve admired this cover for a long time. The illustration is beautiful, and while I don’t always like faces on my covers (I am of the type who like to picture the characters for myself), these ones really worked. The front cover goes perfectly with the book and I feel it captured the characters and mood well. (I believe it is Mordred and Keira on the front cover.)

Characters: I knew most of the characters in this book already, as I enjoy reading Arthurian stories. Vivian kept true to the
Jun 05, 2012 added it
Read the full review at Pica Reads.

... I really did not like this book at all, and I thought it deserved mention just to say how much I disliked it. (Also, I have just been reading a lot of Vivian Vande Velde recently.) The story itself is about Mordred, the illegitimate son of King Arthur. The book is split into three sections, each told by a different person. One of the things I didn't like about the book is how disjointed and separate each of the sections seemed. They all sort of came togethe
I'm usually a big fan of Velde's writing, and I'm always a huge fan of telling the story from the loser's perspective. Velde telling the story of Mordred? How could it be any less than awesome?

Unfortunately, Velde's trademark dialogue, writing style, and (maybe most importantly) brevity are completely lacking from The Book of Mordred. It's not even about Mordred. As one reviewer wrote, it might as well have been called The Book of Halbert for how much time Halbert got in the spotlight. The book
Jan 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: king-arthur

Warning, this story gets dark very fast. The body count piles up quickly; lots of people die in a variety of nasty ways while a lot of other people get away with it.

Vivian Vande Velde has taken the King Arthur mythos and crafted a story that is entirely originally, new adventures, new characters, new twists and turns to the legend, yet brings it around to incorporate all the elements of the foamier tale. Once again, this is a king Arthur story, so there is no other possible ending besides traged
Nov 20, 2008 rated it it was ok
Okay, so I'm still a sucker for the Arthurian legend. And, who doesn't enjoy a revisionist perspective?

I'll admit, once upon a time, early in my writing life, I played with this same idea . . . retelling the story of Mordred in a less son-of-creepy-incest, killer-of-King-Arthur vein. But I got to a point where I felt like that Camelot was too well-worn of a backdrop for me.

On the whole the story was fairly interesting, told well-enough and easy to read.

In closer detail, I found Vande Velde's w
Dec 26, 2009 rated it really liked it
Actual rating: 3.75 stars

I found this book to be an interesting take on a character who in Arthurian legend has pretty much always been seen as totally evil. In this book Mordred is a basically a good person (flawed, definitely, but overall good) who maybe doesn't always make the best choices or gets caught up in circumstances.

The story is told through the perspectives of three women who loved Mordred, Alayna and her daughter Kiera as well as Nimue from Arthurian legend. I think this works prett
I didn't manage to finish the entire book. Throughout the last part (sadly the longest of the three) it just lost my attention. Kiera couldn't interest me and the fact that she saw the future just added to the annoyance.. because really, this is Arthurian Legend, I know what's going to happen. Then I don't need to read her having a vision and then living through the same thing. Essentially the last part (for me) seemed to repeat itself a lot and it got on my nerves.

That is quite sad because the
Jul 15, 2011 rated it really liked it
I really liked this book because it explored a character that has always been known as evil and showed he was just human. Mordred has issues and those issues are brought to light in the book and not just brushed over, but they are issues you can sympathize with. I liked how the author explored everyone's hand in the downfall of Camelot and not just Mordred's. It's always easy to place the blame on one person without looking at the actions of others, regardless of how heroic you claim them to be. ...more
So when I picked up this book, I was thinking that we were going to get a retelling of Mordred where he was not as evil as the original story. There was certainly an attempt at this, but I think it fell short.

The reader sees Mordred through three different women. In the first two sections, the women have just met him, and they end abruptly. Basically I found myself not really caring about Mordred because I was merely shown the same cold, calculating side of him repeatedly. Mordred is not portra
May 18, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, pov-shift, kindle
Overall it was a decent book. Pretty depressing, but decent.

My quarrel is with the editing of the kindle book. Is it really that hard to edit a book? The amount of typos/errors in the kindle edition are staggering. Forgotten quotations, periods, commas, apostrophes and downright misspellings and hard-to-understand typos riddled this book and annoyed me more than i actually enjoyed the story. For instance: "A little more time spent thinking, and I'll he too late do do anything." and "...Camelot i
Aug 27, 2012 rated it liked it
This book was fine. A nice, light read, engaging once I actually curled up with it. The only problem I really have with it is that the title is pretty deceiving--as the book focuses entirely on the author's insert-character Kiera and very little on Mordred himself. So, if you're like me and picked this up because you like his character, there won't be much for you here. The ending felt pretty tacked-on, as if the author knew she had to get to the final battle between Arthur and Mordred, and didn ...more
Janine Southard
Jan 12, 2011 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 16, 2009 rated it really liked it
First of all, I really like the idea of exploring Mordred as someone who's not a completely bad character or as someone who's just being manipulated by Morgan and/or Morgause. However, this book is less about Mordred than you might think. It's actually more of Kiera's story. She's the one element that ties the three sections of the book together. And as Kiera's story, it works well. I just wish we'd seen more of her life than the three brief glimpses we get.

All in all, the plot is your expected
Victoria Pond
Mar 01, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya, arthurian
I admit it. I've got a thing for Mordred. Mordred and Loki are the awesome, talented, nice guys who are hated by those they love for reasons they cannot alter and, after being beaten down too many times, rise up. Loki acts out; Mordred stages a coup for the good of all Britons. Their failures to rise above and change the system are very sad. Someday, I'm going to write a novel from the POV of Loki's therapist.

Anyway, The Book of Mordred was more about the young girl he helps (saving her from ce
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The Storyworld Project discussion. 11 4 Mar 01, 2016 06:08AM  
  • I Am Mordred
  • Sword of the Rightful King
  • The Idylls of the Queen: A Tale of Queen Guenevere
  • Guinevere (Guinevere, #1)
  • Here Lies Arthur
  • The Road to Camlann. The Death of King Arthur
  • In Camelot's Shadow (The Paths to Camelot, #1)
  • Mordred, Bastard Son
  • The Road to Avalon (Dark Ages of Britain, #1)
  • The Winter Prince (The Lion Hunters, #1)
  • The Seeing Stone (Arthur Trilogy, #1)
  • Prince of Dreams: A Tale of Tristan and Esyllte
  • The Quest of the Fair Unknown (The Squire's Tales, #8)
  • The Pendragon Chronicles: Heroic Fantasy from the Time of King Arthur
  • Lancelot (Knights Of The Round Table, #1)
  • Sons of Avalon: Merlin's Prophecy
  • The Book of the Sword (Hallowed Isle, #1)
  • The Killing Way (Arthurian Mysteries, #1)
Vivian Vande Velde (born 1951, currently residing in Rochester, New York) is an American author who writes books primarily aimed at young adults.

Her novels and short story collections usually have some element of horror or fantasy, but are primarily humorous. Her book Never Trust a Dead Man (1999) received the 2000 Edgar Award for Best Young Adult Novel. She says that she really likes to write for
More about Vivian Vande Velde...