Alesha Orton's Reviews > The Last Light of the Sun

The Last Light of the Sun by Guy Gavriel Kay
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's review
Oct 17, 2009

it was amazing
Read in October, 2009

** spoiler alert ** I got done with this book about 2 weeks ago, and I keep dreaming that I am one-or-other of the characters almost every night. It has infused itself to me. I don't know if this book is for everyone, it's prose is a bit like Patricia McKillip's-- and like Patricia McKillip the core of the book ends up being, amazingly, about forgiveness and human goodness. It is historical fantasy-- which is kind of my new genre to read right now. Where the fantasy part of things is the kind of fantasy that they believed in at the time. The fantasy in this one is in the form of fairies that play a part in the book, and that the Welsh believed in (maybe they still kind of do). Half way through the book one of the main characters is introduced and it is King Alfred the Great, describes his years in the swamps and his building of the burghs and his translations and all he did for the Christian faith and to keep England in tact. His story becomes part of the tapestry of all the other character's stories-- -I'm blown away by how the historical and the fiction of this book are woven together to all hinge on the self-sacrifice of one character towards the very end to save them all-- especially since none of their stories are related until that pivotable moment. I've also been reading Cornwall's "The Last Kingdom" a historical fiction about Kind Alfred and I found it rather frustrating, even though he must have researched everything written about King Alfred he still didn't realize that Anglo-Saxons and Vikings could understand each other's languages around 877 AD, and indeed until William the Conqueror. I know Guy Gavriel Kay read several translations of the Islandic Sagas and he hit the nail on the head for me. Even with this being a fantasy, it feels really accurate about the cultures. If you haven't read the Islandic Sagas yourself you wouldn't realize how accurate he is. Okay, nobody writes long reviews? I'm a newbie in goodreads land, plus I can't help it.

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