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King Arthur: Dragon's Child [Hardcover]

M. K. Hume
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

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Book Description

5 Mar 2009 King Arthur

Uther Pendragon, High King of Britain, is dying. As he weakens, Britain is being torn apart by the squabbling of kings. Only one man can bring them together. This is the legend of Artorex, the man destined to be King Arthur.

Artorex, tall for his years, is growing up in the household of Lord Ector. Artorex was sent here by the Bishop of Glastonbury when he was but a babe in arms and, although his parentage is unknown, life has been unremarkable. That is, until the arrival of three men who arrange for him to be trained in the skills of the warrior; blade and shield, horse and fire; pain and bravery.

By the time the men return, Artorex is both a father and a warrior - and married to Lady Gallia. The country is in a desperate state - Londinium is about to fall to the Saxons and Artorex is needed to help fight their advance. But to do so, he must leave his wife and family in the care of others. In an act of appalling treachery, they are slaughtered. But despite his terrible grief, Artorex's destiny is set. He launches into a campaign of battle against the Saxon hordes, earning himself the trust of all men, and proving himself to be the only worthy successor to Uther. But Uther cannot accept Artorex's role and hides his sword and crown.

If Artorex is to unite the kings and fulfil his destiny, he needs the weapon destined to be worn by the High King of the Britons. Can he find the embittered Uther's hiding place? The future of Britain is at stake...

Product details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Headline Review; First Edition edition (5 Mar 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0755348656
  • ISBN-13: 978-0755348657
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 15.8 x 4.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 389,668 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Book Description

The first book in an exciting, brand-new Arthurian trilogy. Tells the compelling story of Arthur as he grows from boyhood into manhood and is trained for leadership and a future he cannot yet know. Arthur struggles to vanquish the Saxons and unite Britain, whilst grieving for the loss of his first wife.

About the Author

M.K. Hume is a retired academic and is married with two sons.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cracker of an Opener 10 May 2009
By Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
With a great many books having been written about the life and times of King Arthur, an author really does have to come up with something a little special to stand out in the sea of literature. Here MK Hume steps into the front line with her first tale in whats set to be a trilogy of a tale that utilises the best of the myths along with transfering them to what many believe is historically the real time period of the King.

What ensues in this first book (of the trilogy) is his journey from boyhood to manhood and his taking of the throne upon the death of Uther with a tale that really will enthuse the reader. The writing style is a pure joy to read and its obvious from the opening couple of pages how enthused the author is along with how clued up they are about the time period. Definitely a tale for all who love a good historical epic with characters so tangable you can almost meet them face to face. Cracking offering and I'll eagerly devour the next tale in October.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An epic in the making 16 April 2009
By Keris Nine TOP 500 REVIEWER
The first book of a lengthy trilogy that promises to be an imaginative, entertaining, educational and thorough retelling of the Arthurian legend covers the origins of Artorex from the age of 14, brought up at the Villa Poppinidii in Aquae Sulis (Bath) by Roman foster parents up to his first encounter with the High King Uther Pendragon, his battles with the barbarian Saxon hordes, his ascension to the throne and his coming to an awareness of the destiny that has to some extent already been mapped-out for him.

I'm in no position to question the historical accuracy of the novel - the work however has clearly been thoroughly and academically researched - but as a work of imaginative fiction, the first part of the Dragon's Child Trilogy is tremendously stirring stuff and rather well-written, taking time to establish the historical context of the period, considering the backgrounds of the personalities and making those characters come vividly to life through a number of personal challenges that they have to face. Prophesy and destiny are in this way mixed with history and personality, cutting through the legend to the people underneath, making it all very real and meaningful and thoroughly engaging the reader. Outstanding.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
As usual, this book arrived at my doorstep free of charge. Unusually, I can't determine with any specificity exactly why it did so. If I had to guess I'd say it was the Atria program via Simon and Schuster. Despite that kind and mysterious consideration, my candid and baldfaced opinions appear below.

In a nutshell, this is the retelling of the King Author myth spanning from Author's birth through his rise to the kingship. As Authurian legends go, this one tends towards the strictly realistic and pulls no punches about the state of the world at the time.

On the positive side, Hume's writing is beyond reproach. I found myself constantly entertained at her use of appropriate and timely language which pulled me to my dictionary repeatedly and with unbridled glee. This is a book that educates while it entertains. Anything she chooses to write in the future will have my utmost attention. Here is a tale that is woven with intricacy and detail that is unrivaled.

On the negative side, and this is a negative side that is rather implied by my perceptions of the tastes of other readers, this is not a book that speeds along with any great rapidity. The book goes on for almost 500 pages and while I was entranced by the intricacies, I can imagine other readers finding themselves in the arms of a rather intransigent ennui. The book does move slowly but the arc that it traces is an epic one.

In summary, this is a book to approach in an unhurried and open-minded manner. It has much to teach you, not the least of which is vocabulary. It's not a book for a single solitary rainy afternoon but instead one to be taken a few chapters at a time over the course of a week. It is a book to be pondered over and digested slowly.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect Holiday Book 8 Sep 2009
Discovered the book at the airport before going on holiday. I was already keen on the Arthur legend, but the decision to buy was based, shallowly, on a judgement of the cover. I'm glad I did - it was an absolutely excellent read. Could not put it down. Very eagerly awaiting next volume - Warrior of the West.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Original, fresh, contemporary 11 Nov 2009
This is an extremely well written recreation of a major British legend dear to many people's heritage.

Major authors have tackled the Arthurian legends with varying degrees of success and it must be extremely difficult for a new author to carve a niche within this subject area. The problem lies in the way an author presents the legends and myths which form the basis of an Arthurian saga. Deviate too far from the nationally recognised story and you risk alienating traditionalist readers who have grown up with the legends of old; yet stick too rigidly to a traditional format and people will not be interested in `yet another' Arthurian tale.

What I particularly enjoyed with this version was the way in which the author presented the tale with less of a focus on the usual mythological aspects and with more emphasis on human achievement and logical reasoning. It was refreshing to read an Arthurian story where it appeared that the author had based the plot on historical sources and was following Arthur's known timeline. Due to the lack of historical evidence surrounding these legends, any prospective author has a great deal of freedom and is able to place their own mark of individuality on their finished work. M. K. Hume has done just that and has combined traditional elements with aspects of human frailty which has resulted in a book which is contemporary and relevant for modern readers.

This is a very good book, which I certainly looked forward to reading on my dinner break! I highly recommend the book to all people who have an interest in the Arthurian legends and are willing to try a fresh perspective.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars M. K. Hume book King Arthur. Dragon's Child
To date I am finding this book a little hard to read, but I think because it has started in a strange place to what I was thinking, so I think it will be very interesting later on... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Peter Manning
4.0 out of 5 stars Another retelling of the ultimate Matter of Britain
M K Hume's take on the Arthurian legend is a post-Roman Britain where the Celts (Britons?) and remnants of the Romans are living in fear of the Saxon invaders, who have encroached... Read more
Published on 17 Mar 2010 by Mark Shackelford
3.0 out of 5 stars Reworked Arthur legend
This is entertaining fiction/'history' a good read, but this is a long way from the quality of Cornwell, Iggulden or even Scarrow. Read more
Published on 10 Feb 2010 by S. Glossop
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!!!
I found this book whilst staring at the many shelves of Waterstones one Saturday. I had never heard of the author or the series of books before but the cover intrigued me straight... Read more
Published on 9 Feb 2010 by Je Salter
2.0 out of 5 stars poorly researched, average writing
Like another reviewer, I was surprised at how little the author seems to know about 5th/6th century Britain, given that she claims to be "something of an expert on most things... Read more
Published on 10 Jan 2010 by H. M. Wiseman
4.0 out of 5 stars A thoroughly entertaining and rather bloody historical romp
Despite a fairly slow start the attention is held by the author's grasp of the period. Indeed I managed to finish the first half of the book at one sitting and that reflects what... Read more
Published on 9 Jan 2010 by Unguslazadir
2.0 out of 5 stars King Arthur
The author doesn't capture the real characteristics of the original Arthur. He was a tribal warrior and a leader who for a time united the tribes but she is trying to portray an... Read more
Published on 4 Jan 2010 by Mr. George Cairns
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