Petrik's Reviews > Camelot

Camelot by Giles Kristian
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really liked it
bookshelves: owned-physical-books, arcs-and-review-copies
Recommended for: Lancelot & Arthurian retelling fans

ARC provided by the publisher—Bantam Press—in exchange for an honest review.

4.5/5 stars

It is not easy to re-lit the fire of hope when everything feels bleak.


I’m a HUGE fan of The Warlord Chronicles trilogy by Bernard Cornwell and Lancelot by Giles Kristian himself; I consider these four books the holy grails of Arthurian retelling novels. I won’t lie, these books are so incredible that I have pretty much settled with the thoughts that there won’t be a better Arthurian novel than them, even if that book is a new novel written by either Bernard Cornwell or Giles Kristian. And I am very confident in this bold claim. But please don’t let this statement steer you into thinking that I wasn’t excited for Camelot. This follow-up sequel to Lancelot is one of my most anticipated books of 2020, and Giles Kristian was able to deliver another beautifully melancholic Arthurian retelling that I’m sure will captivate fans of Lancelot.

“There is still a flame and that flame can become a fire which will wake the gods.”


The story in Camelot takes place ten years after the end of Lancelot, and the story follows a 20 years old Galahad, the son of Lancelot—Arthur’s best friend, the betrayer, and the lord of battles. A story about finding hope in the darkest of times may be a bit cliché, but it is a timelessly important theme that will prevail through the test of times, and Camelot depicts an immersive tale about exactly that. The narrative in Camelot mainly revolves around Galahad, the familiar characters from Lancelot, and their struggle to brandish the shining swords of Britain once again. It would be on-point to call Camelot an epilogue novel that finished the tale that began in Lancelot but also begins a new line of story upon its conclusion.

“We are no army, but we are the beginning of an army. We are the flint and steel from which a hundred fires will be lit. A thousand fires.”


Galahad is not Lancelot. That point is one of the key driving strengths of Galahad’s characterizations, and in all honesty, it wouldn’t be fair to compare the two of them. However, I feel like a comparison on which one was superior as the main character needs to be done because this novel—despite the time-gap—is quite a direct continuation of what happened at the end of Lancelot. Who do I like more as the main character? Lancelot. There’s something extraordinarily special in Kristian’s coming-of-age rendition of Lancelot. Plus, I am much more familiar with Lancelot than Galahad, and it took a bit longer for me to connect to Galahad relatively. Regrets, love, glory, and loyalty are still some of the most dominating themes of the story, and thankfully, Galahad eventually grew to become a great character as he progressively becomes the reaper of lives—following the footstep of Lancelot while retaining his own identity.

“I thought it would be enough. I should have seen what would happen. I should have known that love can destroy like fire.”


Giles Kristian is a massively talented writer, his capability to chain a lyrical stream of words seriously should earn him many awards. I didn't rush through this book. Similar to reading Lancelot, haste is not an option; the emotions, the bloody battles, the writing demands to be savored. I would slow down time if I could. I would beg for more words to read if I could, and still, the eye that peered into the words on the pages eventually reached the last page. I loved Camelot, this is a wonderful sequel that, somehow against all odds, completed Lancelot even further. Enchanting, haunting, and filled with lyrical prose that would spark the jealousy in a myriad of writers, Camelot is an evocative work of magnificence. Every enthusiast of Lancelot and Arthurian retelling should give this book a read. Kristian seems to have left the ending open for continuation, and I look forward to reading the next tale he writes.

Official release date: 14th May 2020

You can order the book from: Amazon UK | Book Depository (Free shipping)

The quotes in this review were taken from an ARC and are subject to change upon publication.

You can find this and the rest of my reviews at Novel Notions

Special thanks to my Patrons on Patreon for giving me extra support towards my passion for reading and reviewing!

My Patrons: Alfred, Devin, Hamad, Joie, Mike, Miracle, Nicholas.
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Reading Progress

July 22, 2019 – Shelved
March 15, 2020 – Started Reading
March 17, 2020 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-22 of 22 (22 new)

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message 1: by Terry (new)

Terry I had no idea this was coming. Hope it’s as good as Lancelot was.


Petrik Terry wrote: "I had no idea this was coming. Hope it’s as good as Lancelot was."

Lancelot was better, Terry, but this is another great book that must be read! :D


message 3: by Terry (new)

Terry 4 stars sounds good to me! Lancelot would be hard to live up to, for sure. I’ve already preordered Camelot so I’ll definitely be reading it soon. Thanks Petrik!


Petrik Terry wrote: "4 stars sounds good to me! Lancelot would be hard to live up to, for sure. I’ve already preordered Camelot so I’ll definitely be reading it soon. Thanks Petrik!"

You're welcome, Terry! I agree, Lancelot is TOO GOOD! Pre-ordering it now is a wise choice, all of Giles Kristian's ebooks are super cheap at Amazon UK at the moment!


message 5: by Edward (new) - added it

Edward Great review, Petrik. I'll be diving into this one over the weekend.


Petrik Edward wrote: "Great review, Petrik. I'll be diving into this one over the weekend."

Thanks, Ed! How are things on your place? Stay safe, alright?


message 7: by Edward (new) - added it

Edward Petrik wrote: "Edward wrote: "Great review, Petrik. I'll be diving into this one over the weekend."

Thanks, Ed! How are things on your place? Stay safe, alright?"


All in isolation. Scary but at least we have each other! Hope everything is okay your end, stay safe mate.


Petrik Edward wrote: "Petrik wrote: "Edward wrote: "Great review, Petrik. I'll be diving into this one over the weekend."

Thanks, Ed! How are things on your place? Stay safe, alright?"

All in isolation. Scary but at l..."


Same here... And that's true! Say hi to everyone for me! :)


message 9: by Susie (new)

Susie If this is the sequel, it looks like these are part of a series, then.


Petrik Susie wrote: "If this is the sequel, it looks like these are part of a series, then."

Yeah, it seems like there's no official name for the series yet, though. Lancelot was a standalone at first!


message 11: by Susie (new)

Susie Petrik wrote: "Yeah, it seems like there's no official name for the series yet, though. Lancelot was a standalone at first!"

That no doubt explains it, but I've sent a message through to the author so I can do my librarian wizardry and link them in a series.

BTW, I've loved the Cornwell Arthurian books so far - the way he explains the Druid magic, the trickery that they use, I personally think is brilliant. They're the most realistic interpretations I've read so far.


Petrik Susie wrote: "Petrik wrote: "Yeah, it seems like there's no official name for the series yet, though. Lancelot was a standalone at first!"

That no doubt explains it, but I've sent a message through to the autho..."


Cheers! I'm a GR librarian, too! It bothers me that I can't use my librarian wizardry for this one. I should've asked the author about an official title for the series! xD

I know right!? Cornwell is super awesome like that. Seriously, though. Warlord Chronicles trilogy and Lancelot are the best Arthurian retelling I've ever read so far. Enjoy!


message 13: by Susie (new)

Susie Petrik wrote: "Cheers! I'm a GR librarian, too! It bothers me that I can't use my librarian wizardry for this one. I should've asked the author about an official title for the series! xD"

I'm not so active as a Librarian anymore, but any little details I see in passing, I tidy them up straight away! lol!


Petrik wrote: "I know right!? Cornwell is super awesome like that. Seriously, though. Warlord Chronicles trilogy and Lancelot are the best Arthurian retelling I've ever read so far. Enjoy!"

Thanks! I've been to Tintagel, where Camelot supposedly was, but there is very little there to connect it to the legends, other than its location, and the bizarre "history" book (although there is evidence of an earlier settlement on the site, before the current castle). I haven't yet been to Glastonbury Tor, but it is easier to imagine that as part of the legends, given its more ancient history.

Who knows?


Petrik Susie wrote: "Petrik wrote: "Cheers! I'm a GR librarian, too! It bothers me that I can't use my librarian wizardry for this one. I should've asked the author about an official title for the series! xD"

I'm not ..."


That is super cool! Tintagel is one place that I would love to visit one day, even just to see how much has changed from these historical fiction would be great! :)


message 15: by Susie (new)

Susie Petrik wrote: "Susie wrote: "That is super cool! Tintagel is one place that I would love to visit one day, even just to see how much has changed from these historical fiction would be great! :)"

Well you might want to do it quickly, as due to the cliff erosion it won't be there forever. :/ But, along with the caves and waterfall, it is definitely a fairytale kind of place.


Petrik Susie wrote: "Petrik wrote: "Susie wrote: "That is super cool! Tintagel is one place that I would love to visit one day, even just to see how much has changed from these historical fiction would be great! :)"

W..."


Oh no, thanks for letting me know! I'll hope I can find the time to go there soon!


message 17: by Susie (new)

Susie Petrik wrote: "Oh no, thanks for letting me know! I'll hope I can find the time to go there soon!"

That reminds me, actually - I watched this documentary last year about King Arthur and it discusses the associations with Tintagel: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt11178948


Petrik Susie wrote: "Petrik wrote: "Oh no, thanks for letting me know! I'll hope I can find the time to go there soon!"

That reminds me, actually - I watched this documentary last year about King Arthur and it discuss..."


Interesting! I'll check it out! Thanks! :D


message 19: by Soumyadeep (new) - added it

Soumyadeep Ray Lancelot was heart rendingly beautiful...would be an extremely act to follow


Petrik Soumyadeep wrote: "Lancelot was heart rendingly beautiful...would be an extremely act to follow"

Precisely! This is still a very good book, but Lancelot was something truly special! :)


message 21: by Brenda (new) - added it

Brenda Waworga so excited to read thisssss 😍😍


Petrik Brenda wrote: "so excited to read thisssss 😍😍"

It' sooo good! :D


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