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King Arthur: The Bloody Cup Hardcover – 4 Feb 2010

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 560 pages
  • Publisher: Headline Review; 1st Edition 1st Printing edition (4 Feb 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0755348710
  • ISBN-13: 978-0755348718
  • Product Dimensions: 16.3 x 24 x 4.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 502,232 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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About the Author

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

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 21 Mar 2010
Format: Hardcover
As a huge fan of MK's writing it was a with bated breath that I had to wait to see if the third part in the series would live up to my expectations. Whilst I severely hoped that it would, there's always a nagging doubt in the back of the readers mind that it really will flop and do it badly especially when you feel that you've already been spoilt with the first two.

What occurs within is not only a fitting tribute to perhaps the reality of Arthur (as MK Hume sets the tale in Roman times) but perhaps a great example of an author who loves her work so much that she'll go the extra mile to make sure that it will please the reader. The prose are ideal, the writing crisp and above all the characters feel real enough for the reader to greet in person. Not only are they likeable but they also have issues that need dealing with emotionally as well as physically. It's a great offering and whilst some will think that this sees the end of the road, remember that MK has the first novel in her Merlin series out in October for readers to travel a more unfamiliar road. A truly great series in the historical fiction world and one that I really can't recommend enough.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A. Perry on 18 Oct 2010
Format: Paperback
I am a great fan of the Arthur legends and have devoured many fantastic takes on the subject from the very Celtic rendition from Stephan Lawhead (The Pendragon Series)Arthur (Book III of the Pendragon Cycle),the 12th century chivalrous tales by Chrétien de Troyes to the dark ages version from Bernard Cornwell (The Warlord chronicles) The Winter Kingand I must say this one ranks up with them as one of the best.

MK Hume manages to include most aspects of the legend with her own particuler descriptive style, making it dark and exciting, yet keeping away from being overly magical. Most characters from the various takes of the legend make an appearence through one or more books of the trilogy. These include the not always remembered: Taliesan, Gareth, Tristan (Trystan) and Iseult, Nimua and the warrior twins Balan and Balyn as well as some of the more known including Perceval, Galahad, Merlin and Uther. Without giving anything away, what I particularly enjoyed was how Hume made her own clear take on the characters, much the way Bernard Cornwell did with his very varied characters. Those who have read his books may know what I mean. For example Gawayne, Galahad and Nimua all have aspects of their better known chracters, but with some very subtle differences. None of which are quite how I had imagined them to be. Which was a good thing!

The one notable absence was Lancelot, but his character was included in a combination of two other popular figures of legend Gawayne and Bedwyr. I have read books before with one or the other but never both!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By JPS TOP 500 REVIEWER on 20 Mar 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is the third volume of the trilogy, with Arthur descending into old age with no heir, plagued with his once-beautiful wife, the spoilt, self-centered, somewhat stupid and nymphomaniac Wenhafer, from which he is estranged. It finishes with his last victory and death, as ke kills Modred, his kin who is trying to "take the throne from him".

One of the most interesting feature of this book, and of the previçous ones, is the author's take of the well-known characters of the Arthurian legends:
- unlike in Cornwell's books where he is both a coward and the arch-traitor, Lancelot is absent, because he was a latter addition.
- Gwaine is the philandering son of King Lot of the Otadini (historically Votadini, situated originally just North of Hadrian's walls) who has all of Lancelot's martial qualities but cannot resist a pretty face. His son is a self-rightous, prude, cruel and fanatically Cristian Galahad, a mighty warrior
- The twins, Balan and Balyn, are presented as Arthur's grandchildren, with Taliesin being Merlin's eldest son with Nimue (who is all-good and perfectly well-balanced, unlike in Cornwell)

There are however a number of elements that are a stretch and difficult to believe. Here are a few:
- If Arthur did have some 20 years of peace, it is unbelievable that he would not have done something about producing (and designating) his heir during all that time
- if his relations with his wife were as atrocious as described in the book, and she had failed to produce that heir while dragging into her bed numerous lovers, it is simply unbelievable that Arthur would have nothing to dispose of her, perhaps brutally and permanently, especially since nowhere in the trilogy is he presented as being in love with her.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By "Seregil of Rhiminee" on 20 Dec 2013
Format: Paperback
This review is based on the Atria Books edition (2014).

M. K. Hume's The Bloody Cup is the culmination of The King Arthur Trilogy. Everything that has happened before has been almost like a prelude to the happenings in this novel. The Blood Cup ends the epic story of King Arthur in a brilliant way. It's powerful story that will be of interest to readers of historical fiction and speculative fiction. I think that everybody who likes good historical fiction will find this novel interesting.

Now that I've read the whole trilogy I can say that M. K. Hume has created a truly original and compelling vision of King Arthur, his life, his family and his deeds. There are several novels about King Arthur, but M. K. Hume's retelling of this famous legend is something different, because she stays true to her own vision.

The King Arthur Trilogy is a perfect example of good storytelling that tells a huge story arc from the humble beginning to the tragic end. The author has a gift for storytelling, because she has created a complex story arc that will fascinate, horrify and surprise the readers. Parts of the story arc were revealed in the two previous novels, but now the author gets to show how things end and how bitter and tragic the ending is for certain characters.

Here's information about the story:

- The first novel, Dragon's Child, told how King Arthur rose to power. The second novel, Warrior of the West, told about King Arthur's battle against the saxons and his doomed marriage to Wenhaver. This novel, The Bloody Cup, tells about King Arthur's later days and death.

- At the beginning of the novel traitors are preparing to take action so that Artor shall fall.
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