A fan of most things to do with the Arthuriad, in respect of that I found the book somewhat disappointing. The characters felt too fussy to me, and it took until I was a long way into the book to actually manage to put that aside and start to enjoy the story for what it was. Mind you, thereby hangs the story's main problem as I also felt that, for a long way into the book, it remained unclear just what the narrative was trying to be.
Whilst I am aware that there are many successful blend of historical and fantasy novels, it felt as though there was something either lacking or forced in this particular blend that rendered it ineffective for most of the time. It was only toward the last part of the book, when historical aspect of the book settled into the background, as a setting rather than as part of the action, (as it had been when the focus was on the political intrigue of Queen Elizabeth, and Mary Queen of Scots courts), that the book became more enjoyable to read.
The journey of, and questioning of, what constitutes faith and the difference between faith and religion was, in my opinion, the most interesting aspect of the book, and is as pertinent now, if not more so, than the time in which the action of the book is set. Does it truly matter what we call god? Even in this however, I felt that at times the point was belaboured, and the impact thereby somewhat lessened.
The overall impression of the book, although I enjoyed it well enough, was that it was perhaps overly long, and could have been a story that was more tightly held together. It tried to fit in way too much, in too many genre styles.