Reading Level: Young Adult
Length: 259 pages
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: March 1, 2010
Stand Alone or Series: 1st book in the Merlin’s Harp series
Source: Bought for Kindle
Rating: 2/5 stars
I have had this book to read for some time. I bought it for the Kindle when I first got my Kindle (years ago) and just finally got around to reading it. Some of the concepts in this book are interesting but overall it is poorly written and hard to follow.
Niviene has grown up on the island of Avalon; the Lady is her mother and she doesn’t know her father. Her youth is highlighted by visits from Merlin, a half fey sorcerer. As Niviene herself grows in power she learns more and more about the mastery of her magic. Then one day Merlin requests her assistance in dealing with King Arthur; Merlin is desperate to save the peace that is slowly unraveling.
This is a retelling of the tale of King Arthur but from the fey perspective and featuring fey characters. Some of the writing in this book is beautiful but it’s very hard to follow. The author jumps back and forth between Niviene’s past and present kind of willy nilly. It’s very hard to figure out if you are reading about what is happening now, what happened when Niviene was little, and what had happened in the near past.
I like that Crompton did this King Author retelling with a heavy emphasis on the Fey. I also enjoyed how Merlin and Niviene are a bit high-handed and super powerful but also have weaknesses and admit that they have made mistakes in their lives.
Unfortunately the poor layout of the plot and the jumping around in time made this a struggle to get through and really take away from what could have been an amazing King Arthur retelling.
Overall I won’t be reading anymore of this series and wouldn’t really recommend it. The plot and way it is written is just too convoluted and confusing. I would recommend checking out Here Lies Arthur by Philip Reeves for a better King Arthur tale retelling.