Monday, January 11, 2010

Kingdom of the Grail, by Judith Tarr

Kingdom of the Grail, by Judith Tarr

Recasting the legendary Roland as the grandson of Merlin and weaving in the Grail Quest, this is an enchanting adventure. The first half follows the Saxon War with a bit of magic thrown in, the second half describes the mystical war for the Grail. I found the transition between the two sections unnaturally sharp, but the juxtaposition of the two similar scenarios is effective. The heroes are all a bit angsty for my taste, but the (somewhat) comic relief (Tarik the shape-shifting puca) worked well. A notch above more typical sword and sorcery fare, Kingdom of the Grail is an entertaining read but takes itself a bit to seriously in places to be truly great.

First Sentence:
Merlin the Enchanter sat alone in the wood.

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