The Return Of Sir Percival: Guinevere’s Prayer by S. Alexander O’Keefe

I’m not sure how I feel about this book. On the one hand, it’s an entertaining tale of Dark Ages Britain, with some really cool Roman/Byzantine/Middle Eastern history and politics thrown in. On the other, it’s a re-imagining of Arthurian lore which plays super fast and loose with established canon, and while it’s good reading, I spent way too much time being irritated that S Alexander O’Keefe conveniently ignored whatever didn’t fit in with the story he wanted to tell. While that’s his prerogative as an author, it also feels lazy as hell: at that rate, why not just build your own mythos instead of piggybacking off this one? Which is also one of my problems with the genre of historical fantasy, as those of you who’ve read my extended rants against some of Guy Gavriel Kay’s novels will remember enduring.

Anyway, if you want an entertaining tale of knights and queens a la Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves (and I choose that comparison for quite definite, not unflattering reasons,) then this is the book for you. But if you’re anything of an Arthurian purist, you might find this book less fun than annoying.

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