I’m not a huge Arthurian geek, but I’ve read a few things in this area.
But not this, and never anything like this.
A friend recommended this book to me, and it’s big, I mean, like 1000 pages big. HUGE. Looks like the Bible.
It took a bit to read, too, I usually just blow through books like I’m standing still but this took a bit longer.
And it’s SO FREAKING GOOD.
It’s an epic book, epic in scope as well as size, and it tells the story of King Arthur from the point of view of various women in his life.
Morgan le Fey gets a really favorable treatment, and Guinevere not so much.
It starts with the early married life of Arthur’s mom, through her romance with his father and his birth, his education and so on.
Morgan (Morgaine, in this telling) is the main character here and her time in Avalon is a big aspect of this book, as is her connection (and Arthur’s) with Avalon. The fight between the old druidic religion and the newer Christianity is waged throughout this book, and it’s not favorable to most of the Christians.
Although–and I say this having been raised Cathoic–there is no question that many priests going all the through the end of the Renaissance were incredibly harsh on the non-Christians in their midst. And we all know that the early church appropriated most of the early pagan festivals to facilitate conversions. So this telling of the early Christians may not be inaccurate.
Still, it’s a beautiful book. Beautiful and brilliantly done. Expect a long reading commitment if you read it, but it’s so so worth it.