HERE LIES ARTHUR by Philip Reeve
Kirkus Star

HERE LIES ARTHUR

Age Range: 12 & up

KIRKUS REVIEW

Is there room for yet another reworking of the Arthur legend? If it’s this one, yes. Reeve imagines a turn-of-the-fifth-century Britain abandoned by the Romans, with Saxons poised in the East to sweep across the West, which is held, uneasily, by a motley collection of warring warlords. Into this disarray rides Arthur’s warband, with Myrddin at his side to spin his story. Gwyna, newly homeless by Arthur and his thugs, finds herself pressed into a legend-making role as the Lady of the Lake and then into Myrddin’s service as a boy, Gwyn. It’s a hard-edged, unromantic examination of Dark Ages realpolitik. As Myrddin tells Gwyna, “There’s nothing a man can do that can’t be turned into a tale…I am the story-spinning physician who keeps [Arthur’s] reputation in good health.” But it’s Gwyna who, horror-struck, sees Gwenhwyfar and Bedwyr’s ill-fated affair and its bloody aftermath, sees Arthur’s rout at the hands of his nephew Medrawt, buries Myrddin in the trunk of an oak in midwinter and begins to spin her own tales. Absorbing, thought-provoking and unexpectedly timely. (Historical fiction. 12 & up)

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-545-09334-7
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: Scholastic
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15th, 2008




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