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A marriage of myth and (pre)historical fiction,
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This review is from: Stone Lord: The Legend Of King Arthur, The Era Of Stonehenge (Paperback)
J.P. Reedman's debut novel, like Bernard Cornwell's "Stonehenge," takes for its principal setting the landscape around the iconic monument on Salisbury Plain. It is a landscape with which Reedman clearly has an intimate knowledge (her website states that she lives nearby), and this is an intimacy which shines through in the telling of the story. It is a story that is also closely informed, as Cornwell's (published in 1999) clearly cannot be, by the results of the archaeological researches that have been undertaken within this landscape over the past ten years or so. The result is a setting, both in terms of the physical landscape and the imagined culture, which is strikingly vivid and believable. Elements of the plot may be more familiar, since Reedman has embroidered, onto the warp of this remote time period (deliberately inexact, but somewhere around 1900 BC), a narrative tapestry from which leap out the figures of Arthurian heroes and heroines whose deeds were first committed to writing 1500 years later. The author's note makes clear that she has, in places, used "artistic license" to bring together the historical and mythic components of her creative project, but it all adds up to an engaging and well-paced story.