Arthur de Giles Kristian

de Giles Kristian - Género: English
libro gratis Arthur


Giles Kristian Publisher: Transworld, Year: 2024 ISBN: 9781473595255

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I firmly believed that I would never experience another Arthurian novel as magnificent as Bernard Cornwell’s Warlord Chronicles trilogy. I was wrong.

I’ll start my review by saying thank you to Robin Carter from Parmenion Books for recommending this book to me. Without him, I wouldn’t have known about this book at all. Seriously, other than his one-time recommendation, I literally never heard of or saw anything about this book anywhere else, and that’s seriously a sin because this is a brilliant book. If you’re into Arthurian Tale or historical fiction, this is a must-read.

The Arthurian legend, as most of you know, has been reenacted countless times. It’s honestly one of my favorite tales out there but although I’ve experienced tons of stories inspired from this, they’re almost always in another medium besides novels. It wasn’t until last year after I finished reading The Faithful and the Fallen series by John Gwynne that I found out about The Warlord Chronicles by Bernard Cornwell; suffice it to say that I was completely mesmerized and it became the best Arthurian retelling I’ve ever experienced in any medium. Why am I saying all this? Lancelot is a book that’s as good as Cornwell’s take on the Arthurian tale.

However, please do know that this is a very different book from Cornwell’s trilogy. Un Warlord Chronicles, Lancelot is a highly character driven book with minimum action sequences; it’s a character study about… well… Lancelot. No surprises there. Now, I don’t know about you but I can only speak from my experience. I have experienced a lot of Arthurian retellings and they’re all unique in their own way, but there’s one thing that stays the same: the story is always told from Arthur’s or his faction’s side. If this was another retelling about Arthur, there’s a chance I wouldn’t have picked this up. However, this is about Lancelot.

Kristian brings a huge level of depth and characterization to Lancelot within this book. Telling the story exclusively from Lancelot’s POV, beginning from his childhood, makes him much more of a flawed and empathetic character. Here we see him not only as a betrayer but a true friend that is faced with the toughest of choices: friendship, loyalty, or love. I’ll admit that I was quite shocked by the prologue because the writing in that section is really not for me; I still have no idea what the prologue was supposed to mean, and the prose was too poetic for me. Luckily, once I’ve reached the 11% mark of the book, the flame of empathy inside my soul was lit. Lancelot became a character in whom I was fully invested; his love towards Guinevere, the friendship he formed with Arthur and many more aspects were all precious. Just take a look at this simple passage for example. Those of you who are familiar with the Arthurian tale will know just how much pain and complexity of feelings are imbued.

“Arthur would fight for Britain. I would fight for Arthur. And Guinevere would always own my soul. The gods are cruel.”

This line alone summed up precisely how complicated Lancelot’s feelings are in between choosing loyalty for Arthur or love for Guinevere. Kristian’s prose flows a clear river with no obstructions. It was beautiful, enchanting, and lyrical. I have no idea if the fact that the author used to be in a boyband helps his prose or not, but I do know that every word was worth savoring.

There are usually two kinds of books: one that fly by quickly and others that you have to savor. Both can and are amazing in their own way, but Lancelot is a book that fell in the latter category. Take your time with this scintillating piece of art. The grief, the agony, the tragedy, the love, let all of these seeps into your blood through the words. Savor them. In the end, you’ll be just as grateful as I’m feeling now.

Thank you, Giles Kristian, for not giving up on writing this book despite the harsh circumstances you had to deal with during the time of writing. This is my first time reading your book, it certainly won’t be the last. May you rise a hawk through all the difficult times ahead.

Side note: Please read the author’s note at the end of the book. It may be short but it shows just how much heart and soul were poured into this book. Speaking of author’s notes, maybe it was destiny for me to read this book because it was written on my birthday this year. :p

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You can find this and the rest of my at Novel Notionsfavorites450 s Mark LawrenceAuthor 73 books53.8k

Kristian is a really good writer. The prose in the prologue is breathtaking and the standard is high throughout the book.

This is a new imagining of the Arthurian legend set very firmly in Dark Ages Britain with (what seems to the layman) a great deal of historical accuracy. It's basically historical fiction with the smallest elements of largely non-consequential magic.

The historical accuracy extends from the big picture (many warring kingdoms, pagan faiths, and a relentless Saxon migration) to the small picture with realistic-feeling descriptions of the very primitive technology in housing, weapons, armour, clothing etc, and the sense that all of them are dirty, smelly, and louse-ridden.

The book opens with battle, betrayal, death and escape. It is not, however, what I would call a fast moving novel. We learn far more about hawking than I ever wanted to, and Kristian has a Tolkienesque love of the landscape, along with its flora and fauna, rivaling the old man in both verbosity and talent. This is a book about characters. It's told by the eponymous Lancelot in the first person. We all know the broadest strokes of the story and it's interesting to see how they appear in this non-fantasy no-frills world. It's a story about friendship, betrayal, love and all the threads that bind that triad so tightly together.

Lancelot is a peerless warrior and we get to see him swing his sword quite a bit. The fight scenes and battle scenes are well done.

I enjoyed the book a lot. It did feel somewhat constrained by the legend within whose boundaries it had to play out. In the end - real life often can - it felt a rather pointless struggle. All those deaths and all that effort for ...? But that in itself is a symptom/consequence of viewing all this through a realistic historical lens. There's no shining plate mail here, no jousting, no chivalry. Carmina Burana's O Fortuna is not going to swell from the background as in the 1981 film Excalibur. And as a fantasy fan I both appreciated that and suffered it too.

A fine book.

My 5 stars are for a combination of the excellent writing and the exciting story. If either element were slightly less good, we'd be at a 4.

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..240 s jessica2,577 44.1k

this feels more historically based rather than rooted in arthurian mythology, but still such an epic tale!

although there are some liberties taken when it comes to lancelot and his life, i actually how the changes fit inside this story. rather than focusing on his big achievements, especially his famous search for the holy grail, this spends a lot of time exploring lancelots adolescence. and his coming-of-age is such a rewarding thing to see.

from being orphaned at age 7 to raised under the tutelage of lady nimue, saving and befriending guinevere, to finally being summoned by merlin to swear an oath to serve arthur at age 18, lancelot becomes a character who is easy to empathise with and someone you cant help but root for.

this is perfect for readers who enjoy ancient british rulers and war, yet enjoy the subtle nod to magic and myth.

5 stars199 s Sean Barrs 1,122 46.8k

Bernard Cornwell is the king of historical fiction. That’s not my opinion: it’s an actual fact. His Arthur trilogy (The Warlord Chronicles) is a great piece of writing; yet, for all that, I much prefer Lancelot. There’s just something captivating about the way Giles Kristian has told this story.

For a start, the Arthurian myth is something that has been adapted many times into fiction, movies and television shows. So what’s new about this version? Well, it’s told solely from the perspective of Lancelot from beginning to end and it is driven by his experience of the events. We see his side of the story. We see how he fell in love with Guinevere when he was very young and we see how he was forced into an impossible love triangle that threatened everything he had become. He didn't want this: it just happened.

You see, Lancelot had been training his entire life to become a warrior. After his entire family was betrayed, he has been under the tutelage of Lady Nimue and her personal warrior guard. He has become a skilled fighter and an honourable man. He saves Arthur’s life and pledges him his service. He becomes the best of his men. This version of Lancelot is not a conniving wife stealing snake as I’ve seen before, but a man caught between the two people he loves most in the world; thus, the novel becomes a compelling character study. And it was fantastic!

One of the greatest difficulties in writing historical fiction is balance. Some authors stretch their stories out too far even after the plot has dried up. Others do not give their characters enough substance and prioritise contextual details and timelines. Giles Kristian gets it just right. This is a big book, with a huge story, though it keeps moving forward and does not get stuck in the mud. Even though the events are dramatic and swift, I feel the characters are depicted perfectly.

Arthur reminded me very much of Cornwell’s version. However, this is Lancelot’s novel and seeing him as a child added so much depth to his character. And it also made it very easy to sympathise with him. Although his love for Guinevere, arguably, was the downfall of Arthur’s dream of Britain, I can’t blame Lancelot. I can only understand him and feel for him. Lancelot never stops growing until the end. He learns about himself, and how far he is willing to go for who he loves. His was an impossible situation.

I also the sense of realism that ran through the story; it showed how historical details or events can easily become exaggerated and turned into myth. Merlin’s antics, for example, and the finding of Excalibur are both very ordinary things but infused with just enough mystery to make the very real seem magic. It's all very well done and the last scene must have been terribly hard to write and, I must say, it’s easily one of the best closers I’ve ever read.

This is an explosive book, the pinnacle of the genre- Go read it!


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__________________________________4-star-reads historical186 s ❄️BooksofRadiance❄️656 867


I’m distraught. Never never never did I imagine it to be this heart rending.

WHAT. A. RIDE!adult-fantasy-sci-fi historical103 s John GwynneAuthor 38 books13.6k

What a great re-telling of the Arthurian mythos. Cornwell's Warlord Chronicles is one of my favourite series of all time, and I don't think I'm alone there, so for me Giles Kristian's decision to step into the same mist-shrouded land is a brave and bold step. Especially when he's writing about Lancelot, who Cornwell masterfully turned into one of the most loathed and despised characters I've ever had the pleasure of hating.
And yet Giles Kristian did it. He turned Lancelot into a character I felt for, cared about and dared to dream for, even though I knew there was not going to be a happy ending. He crafts a beautiful, tragic tale with exceptional heart, punctuated by visceral, blood-spattered battle scenes. A must read. 90 s William Gwynne422 2,339

I now have a YouTube channel that I run with my brother, called 'The Brothers Gwynne'. Check it out - The Brothers Gwynne

Simply, one of the best books I have ever read. Pure brilliance! Incredible prose, amazing characters, immersive world-building.

“And yet Arthur had Merlin. And Merlin had an idea. And so Arthur listened”

Lancelot is a historical version of the Arthurian tales that was refreshing and special. Wow, it was phenomenal!

The Arthurian legends have undoubtedly consisted of some of my favourite tales of all time. From the film adaptations to Tolkien’s epic poem The Fall of Arthur and Bernard Cornwell’s Warlord Chronicles. These are some of my favourite books ever, hence why I am currently writing a 6,000 word essay on the evolution of the legends. Lancelot now enters this bracket, and goes right up near the top.

This was a wonderful retelling of well-known stories, from a unique and wonderful perspective, including an entirely new coming of age story, and giving such a brilliant depth to the story of Lancelot.

Giles Kristian's prose is smooth, clear and alluring. The reading was made even better by the great audio narration of Philip Stevens, the first audiobook I’ve ever listened to.

“Arthur would fight for Britain. I would fight for Arthur. And Guinevere would always own my soul. The gods are cruel.”

The characters are masterful! New characters were brilliant and memorable, Pelias and Melwas being two such people. I fell in love with some. I absolutely despised others. They will linger on my mind for a long time to come.

This is my first reading of a book by Giles Kristian, a crime really. And oh was I so happy to discover he creates amazing action sequences. You are immersed into the conflict, whether it be a duel, or a skirmish, or a large scale battle. Whatever it is, you will feel as if you are there, participating in the crush of battle, experiencing the claustrophobic adrenaline rush of the shieldwall. Yet another aspect of this book to praise!

Lancelot is a story of heroism and tragedy. Of love and loyalty. Of a heart-wrenching decision between friendship and love. An impossible decision. I hate certain decisions Lancelot makes, but I could not stop myself sympathising with him and agreeing with his course. Kristian framed the story in the perfect way.

Overall, I cannot express the joy I found in this novel. It was utterly brilliant! Never a dull moment. Characterisation, plot and pace was all spot on. Nothing to fault in this magnificent tale. The sequel matches this in craft step by step.


My full review on BookNest!

BookNest-Lancelotarthurian audible favorites ...more82 s Hamad1,149 1,518

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