fabulously reinvented
fabulously reinvented

The King Arthur Trilogy–Dragon’s Child
M.K. Hume
Atria Books 10/8/2013
Trade Paerback, 512 pages

Synopsis reprinted from Simonandschuster.com:   The Dark Ages: a time of chaos and bloodshed. The Roman legions have long deserted the isles and the despotic Uther Pendragon, High King of Celtic Britain, is nearing death. As the tyrant falters, his kingdom is being torn apart by the minor kings who jostle for his throne. But only one man can bring the Celts together as a nation and restore peace – King Arthur.  We meet Arthur first as a shy, subservient twelve-year-old living in the home of Lord Ector, who took in the boy when he was a babe to protect him from murderous kin. One day, three influential men arrive at Ector’s villa and arrange for Arthur to be taught the skills of the warrior: blade and shield, horse and fire, pain and bravery.  When they return years later, the country is in desperate straits, for the great cities of the east are falling to the menace of the Saxon hordes.  In spite of Uther, Arthur becomes a war chieftain and wins many battles to earn him the trust of his Celtic warriors and prove that he alone can unite the tribes. But if he is to fulfill his destiny and become the High King, Arthur must find Uther’s crown and sword.

The future of Britain is at stake. – See more at: http://books.simonandschuster.com/King-Arthur-Trilogy-Book-One-Dragons-Child/M-K-Hume/The-King-Arthur-Trilogy/9781476715186#sthash.s7AnIZzP.dpuf

For anyone whoever nurtured an in interest in the Arthurian legends, or if you are just suffering Game of Thrones withdrawal, this book will be a windfall.  M.K. Hume’s knowledge of the legends is so extensive that the reader is drawn in to a fascinating walk through the early life and times of King Arthur.  Dr. Hume’s scholarship is evident at every turn in the book.  It is also clear that she is a professor and her habitual audience is a group of students.  While in some cases that writing style might draw a reader out of the drama of her story, in this book it only gives the narrative more credulity.

When the reader wonders how much of the plot came from the legends, Hume manages to work some kind of “tell” into her dialogue or setting.  Those professorial moments in the writing allow the reader to approach this story, as it seems Hume herself would, with a dual perspective:  first, for the sheer interest of the story, and secondly with the realization that this is an imagining of practical life circa the 5th century and that the kernels from which our legend was made came from the daily life of an actual man.

Hume manages to bring the ancient world into a modern plot with such deftness that it’s possible to forget every other version of the King Arthur story that one has ever heard.

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