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The Epic Tale of Arthur, King of the Britons.Twelve long, blood-soaked years have passed since Artor was crowned High King. Against all odds, he has united Celtic Britain and banished the Saxon scourge. The legend of Camlann has begun.But even as Artor's kingdom is at its zenith, even as he has succeeded in conquering all external threats to his rule, his kingdom is beingThe Epic Tale of Arthur, King of the Britons.Twelve long, blood-soaked years have passed since Artor was crowned High King. Against all odds, he has united Celtic Britain and banished the Saxon scourge. The legend of Camlann has begun.But even as Artor's kingdom is at its zenith, even as he has succeeded in conquering all external threats to his rule, his kingdom is being undermined from within. For Artor has chosen Wenhaver (Guinevere) as his queen and second wife. Wenhaver will always love what she cannot have and have what she cannot love, and her bitterness threatens to bring down all those around her.Not only has Artor been betrayed by the one person he thought he should be able to trust, he has also learned of appalling perversion at the heart of his kingdom. He must make a terrible choice. Could all that Artor has fought for be lost?Will Britain be torn apart?...

Title : warrior of the west
Author :
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ISBN : 15840350
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 505 Pages
Status : Available For Download
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warrior of the west Reviews

  • Mogsy (MMOGC)
    2019-05-22 15:02

    4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum http://bibliosanctum.blogspot.com/201...Of the many re-tellings and interpretations I've read based on the King Arthur mythos, I think M.K. Hume's is probably the most "scholarly" version I've ever come across. As an expert on Arthurian literature writing the series as more of a historical fiction than a fantasy, the author clearly went to great lengths to find the most accurate accounts of Arthur's reign. Still, she ultimately chose to tell the legends her way, and there are certainly no shortage of surprises here.This is the second book of Hume's King Arthur trilogy. The first book Dragon's Child was about how Artor (Arthur) won his crown to become High King of the Britons, while Warrior of the West takes place approximately twelve years after that. The story almost feels like it is split into two parts, with the first half of the novel focusing on the war against Glamdring Ironfist and his army of Saxon invaders. But while it was undoubtedly the right call for Hume to open the book with the excitement and conflict of a war campaign, I personally found the events of the second half of the novel more engaging. Having driven back his enemies, the rest of the book centers around Artor's efforts to establish his throne and his need for a legitimate heir. This, of course, is where Wenhaver (Guenevere) comes in, and the interesting part begins.I have to say this book's characterization of Wenhaver is one of my favorite portrayals of King Arthur's queen that I've ever encountered. Simply put, she's a terrible, vicious person, little more than a spoiled child accustomed to using her beauty to get what she wants. In her afterword, Hume confesses that she has never much liked Guenevere or her character's relevance as someone who could bring ruin to an entire kingdom for the love of another man, and yet could still retain her likeability as a person. I've never thought about it that way, but the fact that Guenevere and her part in the legend has always been heavily romanticized is true enough. However, in this story Wenhaver is a vile, jealous and sadistic character who cheats on her husband out of spite. Hume also leaves the character of Lancelot out entirely, which makes sense because she is staying faithful to the older versions of the legend (Lancelot is thought to have been absorbed into the Arthurian tradition after he was introduced by the French romances). But while there's no love lost between king and queen, Hume cultivates her character relationships in other places. As a counterpoint to Wenhaver, we have Nimue, known commonly as the Lady of the Lake who enchants the heart of Merlin. Nimue is the polar opposite of Wenhaver, being a sweet, kindly and down-to-earth young woman -- which again is an intriguing portrayal of a key figure that is very different and unique. I love the background Hume has written for Nimue, while still managing to tie in a lot of the elements from the more popular versions of the legend, including her relationship with Myrddion Merlinus. In spite of this, the story also feels grounded in historical reality, which I'm sure is due largely to Hume's research and academic expertise. The nature of the writing style also puts you right there, and is quite effective at emphasizing the brutality of the times. In some ways, the starkness of the prose makes the violence seem so much worse, making me feel a lot more squeamish. Indeed, the author does not spare us from the darker, bloodier side of forging a kingdom. As you can see, the book veers off a great deal from the more "accepted" versions of the King Arthur legend, but that is also what I love best about it. The way Hume weaves her own personal imaginings into a framework which brings together myth and legend with historical accounts is what's making this series stand out for me. It's true that these novels lean further into historical fiction territory than fantasy, making them quite different than the type of books I'm currently reading now, but I'm definitely looking forward to checking out the conclusion of this trilogy.

  • Lisa
    2019-04-26 11:21

    If this book had a face, I would happily punch it every day until next Christmas. As it doesn't, I'll have to settle for ranting about it instead. Its predecessor, King Arthur: Dragon's Child, was a decent bit of brain-candy imagining the younger years of Artorex that I enjoyed despite its flaws. Warrior of the West, catching up with King Artor twelve years later, compounded those flaws and nearly drove me to complete rage more than once - throughout the second half I had to take frequent breaks in order to swear at it profusely, nearly break my kindle in fits of temper, and wish a violent death upon virtually every character within. Now High King of the Britons, Artor has spent the last decade murdering every Saxon he comes across. When his emissaries are killed while negotiating a truce, he mounts an assault on the Saxon stronghold of Glamdring Ironfist. The first half of the book builds slowly towards this, showing a little of how Artor has changed in the intervening years and introducing Ironfist and a few of his compatriots, including the slave Bedwyr. Considering the amount of time spent on him, Bedwyr would appear to be an important new character but it turns out that as soon as Artor has his victory he's promptly forgotten about and never mentioned again.Unfortunately, this victory also kicked off the deeply problematic second half of the book, during which its focus on characters brought the problems of the first book into the spotlight. While Uther may be long dead, Artor's foster-brother Caius is still around and so subtly drawn that he may as well be called Rapey McStabs-a-lot and have the Death March start up whenever he walked onto the page. But Rapey has nothing on Wenhaver, Hume's version of Guinevere. There was really no need for Hume to mention her dislike of Guinevere in her accompanying notes, as her contempt shone through in one of the most flagrant examples of character bashing that I've ever come across. I have no problem with unlikeable and flawed characters, but I do have a problem with those obviously set up solely for unfavourable comparisons to a character the author does like. The Wenhaver of this book isn't really appalling for her own sake or that of the story, but so that we'll also worship Nimue (or as I soon came to call her, Fucking Nimue).Having been saved as a baby in Dragon's Child and brought under the protection of the High King, Fucking Nimue is now grown up and serving as the apprentice of Merlinus, and is the most beautiful, most elegant, most interesting, most intelligent, most caring, most wonderful woman to have ever walked the earth. I suspect that not only do her farts smell like freshly baked cookies, but that she shits sunbeams too (and that eating them would probably cure world hunger and stop all wars forever). She's so fabulous that no-one (including the book) can stop themselves from commenting every five minutes on how bloody wonderful she is, and comparing her to Wenhaver who is portrayed as being every awful thing that has ever been said about a woman. Petulant, spiteful, rude, abusive, promiscuous, immature, irrational and thick (amongst many other awful things), no-one (including the book) can stop themselves from calling her a cow, a bitch, a slut or, more often, a whore any time her name is mentioned. Even when noting her beauty the book can't help but mention that her dress clashes with her skin making her look shit compared to Fucking Nimue (rhymes with Mary Sue!) who, of course, looks like a supermodel even while wearing a sack. It's at this point that I started sounding like Samuel Jackson having a vicious fit of Tourette's, which the stupid serial-killer sub-plot that sprang up here made even worse. While Merlinus shows off his psychological profiling and forensic skills and generally acts like he's a heartbeat away from pulling out a pair of sunglasses and a bad pun, it soon becomes apparent that even the serial killer is obsessed with Fucking Nimue, though he sadly doesn't succeed in murdering her before he's unveiled as - surprise! - the one bloke that we're constantly reminded is a shit.If I do read the last in this trilogy (unlikely, although I'd already stupidly bought it after Dragon's Child) it'll only be so that I can root for Wenhaver to screw every man, woman and beast on Cadbury Tor and give Artor such a raging case of syphilis that his face falls off just in time for the Saxons to arrive and, hopefully, kick everyone's teeth in.**Also posted at Randomly Reading and Ranting**

  • Arthurianmaiden
    2019-05-22 09:19

    I loved it and I hated it. If I could give two reviews one for the first part and one for the second one, I would.But first I have to say that I've read the first novel in the trilogy many years ago and I don't remember it much except that I didn't like it (plus some stuff in the plot) so I will not make comparison with the first novel or about character development.To write a review about this novel I will have to separate it into two parts.(view spoiler)[The first part of the novel is about Arthur preparing an attack to the Saxons and returning victorious. This part is amazingly written. This is a general quality of the overall book along with how realistic are some characters.I usually am extremely bored by battles but Hume managed to write a battle against Saxons which is long, enjoyable and exciting. The plots, the introduction of Bedivere, Arthur's wound: everything was perfectly mastered in the narration. I loved every character in this part: from Bedivere and his original and heartbreaking backstory, the Saxon enemy who was his value and his cruelties, Arthur most of all, because he was a cinical character, one that was struggling with morality and doing what he had to win.The second part is, in my humble opinion, terrible. It starts with the introduction of Guinevere who is very young, spoiled, beautiful but incapable of elegance, vulgar, freely cruel with servants on the point of hurting and beating them. No one, literally, on one likes her in the book and this is what I call a character bashing. The author hates Guinevere (she herself says so in the final notes of the novel) and she uses everything she has to destroy her character. It's also quite irritating because every character and every point of view in the narration often calls Guinevere a "slut", "bitch" (the most used one) and "whore" and it's quite annoying to read.Arthur doesn't want to marry but he has and he treats Guinevere horribly. Before even meeting her he decides that he will never love again, then, seeing Guinevere is so annoying and "bitchy" he proceeds to insult her, abuse her (and from the 'positive' characters in the book we hear that "the bitch deserved it"), nearly rape her (it was a dubious content stuation, Guinevere's first time and Arthur called her horrible names) on their first night while the author shame her for liking sex. The author does the same with Morgause, calling her a pleasure-seeking woman.About the other characters of this second part we have Nimue, a young 'wild' woman who is so free and beautiful and elegant and everyone loves her but Guinevere hates her because Guinevere is jealous of her. This is really a trope I hate. But hey, let's continue. Nimue is very very young and she falls in love with Merlin, desiring to have his children (Merlin is about 60 years old).At least Nimue is the only one who actually realizes and says aloud that there is some darkness in Arthur and that it will probably taint his future.Another bashed chracter is Kay. In the second part we find out that Kay starts again with his serial killer attitude (the one with Severinus in the first book) and the book descrives how the victims are raped and left to bleed in horrible ways. At this point I was so disgusted by Kay and Guinevere having the most horrible traits, lives, cruelties, that I had to take a pause.I generally like the direction of this book (Arthur becoming darkner etc.) but bashing character you don't like, in this way, is just lazy weiring in my opinion. (hide spoiler)]

  • Lucinda
    2019-05-06 14:15

    This compelling epic masterpiece is truly spectacular, encapsulating the Arthurian legends in such exquisite detail!The remarkable sequel to Dragon’s Child continues the tale of Arthur, king of the Britons whose legendary tale is one cherished by so many readers. The story picks up from where it left off with Artor crowned High King and whose blood-soaked reign has lasted twelve long years. The Saxon scourge has been banished, replaced by a united Celtic Britain that has conquered external threats standing now at its zenith. M. K Hume captures the exquisite depth and intricate detail of the times, presenting you with a realistic, well-researched vivid account of the age – thus the myths and legends are brought to life once more. As Artor’s kingdom is threatened unknowingly from within, he makes the ultimate choice with Wenhaver becoming his Queen and second wife. It is her deep-rooted bitterness, her longing for the untouchable that poisons those around her, as she attempts to betray the one individual whom trusts her utterly and completely. Artor must make that sacrifice for his kingdom, for if not then a terrible fate may ensue that could threaten all that he has fought for… (Quote) ‘…Artor will be the greatest of men. When the stars fall, and all we know is forgotten, Artor will be remembered. We, too, will become creatures of myth, as insubstantial as ghosts, because we were a part of his life here on Earth. Some men were born for burdens, and one of those is Artor. Some men were born for tears, and Artor is one of those men…’ This exciting, compelling and truly magical tale is a historical masterpiece and outstanding achievement of such great scope thought impossible. MK Hume outshines all other authors who have written works based on the Arthurian legends and tales of Merlin; including Camelot, Guinevere, the round table and the Knights such as Sir Gwain and Sir Lancelot. This delicately interwoven narrative interlaced with such beautiful simplicity will astound, as the complexity of the storyline and immense world-building draws you in. Authentic, believable and brilliant I cannot enthuse enough about this accomplished author whose work has enchanted me, and as a result I shall forever remain a devoted and ardent fan and admirer. Whether you deem that King Arthur was a myth, or if he was indeed a Celtic Warlord or even nothing more than an embellished folk tale you cannot help but be empowered and stunned by this original creation. MK Hume has lived, breathed and drunk in these tales of old and in doing so has consequently produced something so impressive, and faithful as to delight so many readers.

  • Photina
    2019-05-02 08:00

    I received an advanced reading copy from NetGalley. This is the second book in M.K. Hume's King Arthur Trilogy and I wanted to read them in order, so I ordered the first book as well. I read both back to back and really enjoyed them. I thought Warrior of the West surpassed the first book, which is rare. What I like about this book is that she does not put King Arthur up on a pedestal. You can see his heroics throughout the story, but she doesn't just throw him into God status like other King Arthur stories do. This is book I would recommend for those who enjoy King Arthur stories. After reading the ARC, I bought a copy of the book for myself.

  • Anjj
    2019-05-11 07:59

    difficult, didnt flow as well as first book. Again silly names.

  • Shannon
    2019-04-21 10:53

    Absolutely fantastic book!! I think I may even like it even more than the first. It's instantly captivating as the opening of the book starts off with bloodshed closely followed by the almighty war between Artor and his united tribes and the Saxon force. The plot with Wenhaver was also really interesting, not the usual love story we hear about. Definitely looking forward to how that ends. Having briefly studied the history of Great Britain I found myself even more fascinated as I realised how much M K Hume has stuck to the history as well as the myths and legends. There were both triumphant and devasting moments - I found myself with wet eyes after one particular chapter. The only thing I found unsatisfying about this book was the anticlimatic role of Nimue in the end but very well done and really looking forward to the next one.

  • Ramoths Own
    2019-05-11 12:59

    I was very happy to read the second in the series and find that it held up very well against book one. I like this authors writing style and the way that she has built the world of Arthur and his friends, family and kingdom is excellent. I also for some reason am very into the fact that her Wenafar is not a nice person.

  • Seregil of Rhiminee
    2019-05-16 09:53

    Originally published at Risingshadow.M. K. Hume's Warrior of the West continues the story of King Arthur in an exciting and entertaining way. Dragon's Child was an intriguing introduction to The King Arthur Trilogy, but this novel reveals the true vastness of the epic story arc that the author has created.Just like Dragon's Child, Warrior of the West is a gritty, mesmerizing and well written historical novel with a few fantastical elements. The fantastical elements include casting bones and prophecies etc.Here's information about this novel:- The events take place a few years after the events of Dragon's Child.- Warrior of the West has been divided into two parts. The first part tells about Artor's battle against the Saxons. The second part tells about Artor and Wenhaver and what happens at Cadbury Tor.- This novel begins with a meeting between the Celts and the Saxons. This meeting ends badly. Artor is at Cadbury Tor and awaits news of the possible truce, but receives different kind of news. A war council is held and the Celts decide to go to war against the Saxons, because the Saxons are brutally attacking against them. The war against the Saxons takes a lot of Arthur's time, because they have to win the war. Times are desperate, so the Celts must fight for their country...- When the battle is over, Artor knows that he must soon take a new wife. He still misses Gallia, but he knows that he must marry somebody soon. Artor takes Wenhaver as his wife, but their life together isn't happy. Life at Cadbury Tor changes a lot with the coming of Wenhaver...That's all I'll write about the story, because I don't want to reveal too many details and happenings. I'll only mention that the author has interesting suprises in store for her readers.At this point I'll mention that the story moves fluently forward and several things happen to the characters. I think it's good that the author has used a time gap between Dragon's Child and Warrior of the West. This time gap has allowed her to develop the characters and the happenings.In my opinion writing about the battle against the Saxons and what happens to Bedwyr was an interesting way to start this novel, because the author concentrated fully on writing about it. After the battle the author shifted the focus shifted to Cadbury Tor and Artor's doomed marriage to Wenhaver.The cast of characters is just as diverse as it was in the previous novel, because the author writes about all kinds of characters from ladies and lords to servants and slaves. Several characters from the previous novel appear in this novel, but the author also introduces new characters.Here's information about some of the characters:- Artor is the High King of the Britons. He has changed during the last twelve years, because he's harder than before. The battles have left their marks on him. He still has honour, but the blood soaked years have hardened him. He's a harsh man who has duties.- Gruffydd and Myrddion are still as interesting characters as they were in Dragon's Child. The author writes fluently about them.- Caius has become a steward to Artor.- Bedwyr is an interesting character, because he's a Celt who was captured by the Saxons. The author uses Bedwyr to explore what happens among the Saxons.- Wenhaver is a beautiful and spoiled woman. She's the daughter of King Leodegran. She's also the woman with yellow hair that Morgan prophesized about. I'll write more about her later.- Morgan is still as evil and manipulative as before, but she has aged.- Nimue has grown up and a tragedy changes her life. She's a sweet young woman, but she's also wild.- Glamdring Ironfist is a Saxon war chief. He causes problems for Artor and the Celts.The characterization works well and the author manages to deepen the character of Artor. She also writes fluently about other characters. I enjoyed reading about Artor, Wenhaver, Nimue, Gruffydd, Myrddion, Morgan and Bedwyr.Reading about Wenhaver and her actions was especially interesting, because she had a vile temper. Her behaviour and attitude towards others became worse as time went by and she turned out to be capable of doing surprisingly bad things. She was like a spoiled child who wanted people to pay attention to her. If people didn't pay attention to her, she was offended and acted badly.M. K. Hume writes perfectly about how bad a person Wenhaver is and shows what she is capable of doing to others. She's capable of hurting people - and even her own husband - in several ways and nobody seems to be safe from her temper. It's great that the author has managed to write so boldly about her life.It was fascinating to reading how Artor's marriage to Wenhaver was doomed from the start, because he was't impressed by his wife and her behaviour. Artor seemed to use Wenhaver mostly for sex, because Wenhaver couldn't act like a queen or a wife should act. Their marriage was cold and unhappy for both of them.M. K. Hume writes fascinatingly about life in ancient Britain and shows what kind of values people used to have and how the Celts regarded the Saxons as savages. She also shows how history has shaped ancient Britain and how Roman customs were absorbed by the populace (hygiene and public bathing etc). The detailed descriptions about the places, characters and battles are believable.What separates this novel from several other Arthurian novels is the amount of details M. K. Hume has added to the story. It's easy to see that she has spent time researching historical happenings and all things related to the Arthurian legend. She has done her best to bring the happenings to life by writing about what happens to the characters and how brutal life was in ancient times, and she has succeeded in it.It's great that the author shows what happens among the Saxons too, because it adds depth to the storyline. It was fascinating to read about the actions and brutality of the Saxons and how they treated men and women. What happened at the Saxon camp was both brutal and thrilling.One of the best things about this novel (and this series) is that the author shows that the characters have to live with what they have done. She isn't easy on her characters, because some of them have to endure all kinds of things. I've always enjoyed reading about how the characters feel about what they have done and how they live with the consequences of their actions, because it adds plenty of depth to the characters.I enjoyed reading about how the shadow of the late Uther Pendragon loomed over Artor and how some characters saw that there were similarities between Artor and Uther. This added a menacing sense of doom to the storyline, because the author indicated that if things were a bit different, Artor could turn out to be as bad and ruthless as Uther.There are several good scenes in this novel that reveal what the characters feel about other persons. For example, the author revealed how Artor cares about his daughter and wanted her to be safe. I also enjoyed reading about Myrddion's feelings towards Nimue.M. K. Hume has her own writing style. Her writing style is delightfully different, because she pays attention to historical details and keeps the story going on. It's easy to see that she loves storytelling, because she writes passionately about the happenings and the characters.The author's descriptions about the battle scenes are good and realistic. In my opinion she manages to write about them in a bit different way than other authors do. She concentrates on writing about how Artor and the others feel about the battles and how they try to win their foes by using careful planning and strategic thinking.Warrior of the West is a novel for adults, because there's sex and violence in it. These scenes are suitable only for adult readers.It's nice that M. K. Hume doesn't shy away from gritty, bloody and dark happenings, because other authors would've probably written differently about these things (to be honest, it's actually amazing how gritty the story is). She writes brutally and unflinchingly about violence. She shows that men are capable of doing all kinds of brutal things to others. The scenes near the end in which a human monster attacks and preys on helpless victims reminded me a bit of the brutal happenings in the first novel (I'd like to write more about this, but I think it's best not to write about it or I might reveal too many things to readers).Before I finish writing this review, I'll mention that there are good maps in this novel. They are useful to readers, because they give information about the places. I'll also mention that I liked the cover image.I enjoyed reading Dragon's Child, but I have to admit that Warrior of the West is a much better novel and has more depth in it. In my opinion Warrior of the West is an exceptionally good and compelling retelling of the Arthurian legend, because the author has written her own unique vision of King Arthur, his life and his deeds.I'll soon read and review The Bloody Cup, which is the third novel of The King Arthur Trilogy. I look forward to reading it, because it'll be fascinating to see how this trilogy ends. I'm sure that it'll be a thrilling novel, because this novel was good entertainment.If you're interested in the legend of King Arthur and enjoy reading Arthurian novels, you should read Warrior of the West and its predecessor (Dragon's Child), because M. K. Hume has written a totally different kind of story about King Arthur. She delivers a captivating and epic story that keeps readers turning pages to find out what happens next.Fantastic entertainment for adults!

  • Lorraine
    2019-05-14 08:55

    M.K.Hume’s Warrior of the West, #2 The King Arthur Trilogy, begins twelve years after Artor becomes High King of Briton. The warriors he sends under a truce flag including Gaheris, Queen Morgause’s youngest son to make a treaty with the Saxon leader, Glamring Ironfist, are murdered as they wait to parley. Artor must avenge these warriors sent in peace. The battle that follows is brutal, bloody, but King Artor’s plan succeeds. Ms. Hume’s writing is precise, and the reader gets a very vivid picture of battle in the 5th century Dark Age Britain. Once peace has been obtained, a late 30s Artor realizes he must marry again to produce an heir. Myrddion selects Wenhaver (Guinevere) as her father will be Artor’s ally. Wenhaver is not what the reader will think Guinevere should be. There are different characters that play major roles as well as additional name and personalities changes found here. Nimue is one that I enjoyed the most. Ms. Hume uses older legends in addition to her personal preference in writing this book. I found this book to be brutally honest, vastly altered, and emotionally draining at times, but it is a book for a true King Arthur enthusiast.

  • Jamie
    2019-05-02 08:00

    Caius you wronging. From the start of the first book when he was talking down to Artor and then knocking his wife around. And that Queen of his, harlot is the best description of her.

  • Rudi Opperman
    2019-05-08 07:56

    This books reads more like a historical novel than a book based on a myth. Perfect scene setting, rich characters, lots of intrigue and violence.

  • Ian Banks
    2019-04-27 15:54

    This review first appeared on the sadly-defunct Specusphere website in 2010:I was really looking forward to reading this book: the first novel in Hume’s Arthurian trilogy was one of the standout books of 2009 for me. It was gripping, historically accurate and told a great story convincingly. I was also taken with the range of characters: callow Artor (Hume’s Arthur), in whom you could see the seeds of greatness; Caius (Kay), whose casual cruelty is held in check by his allegiance to his half-brother; to the calculated, yet humane plotting of Myrddion (Merlin). And there were other characters whom are not part of the Arthurian canon but who were portrayed so vividly and warmly that they leapt from the page. I was especially fond of Targo, the Roman Centurion who raises horses for Artor’s stepfather and teaches Artor all he knows about combat and tactics. And there was Gallia, Artor’s first and truest love, who dies tragically.So I opened this book with anticipation. Very quickly I was back in the Dark Ages, battling with Artor as he tries desperately to keep Britain together. Hume makes the decision to skip several years to show us an Artor on the verge of his dream of a united Britain. He is a harder man too: you can sense that these years have been tough on him but rewarding as well, as is evidenced by his idealism still being intact. But, just as he seems about to achieve his goal, the Saxons begin to encroach further into his lands than they have before, demanding land and conquest. Artor is also considering taking a wife, though more to secure the throne than for any romantic reasons. However, he finds that dealing with a spoiled princess may be even harder than repelling the Saxons…And this is where you might find this book becoming a little too much for you: Wenhaver (Hume’s Guinevere) is not an attractive character; there is also no Lancelot in Hume’s vision of Camelot; Nimue and Merlin’s story is slightly different to established legend, as is Perceval’s; and Morgana, like Cassandra in David Gemmell’s retelling of the Trojan War, is a much different character to what “established” legend might say.But what is the established legend? Marion Zimmer Bradley’s version, as recounted in The Mists Of Avalon? T. H. White’s version? Lord Tennyson’s? Sir Thomas Malory’s? Chretien de Troye’s? Geoffrey of Monmouth’s? All of these, as well as countless others, have added to the myth and built up what we know as the “story” so far. Hume has done reams of research for this series and as it progresses you realize just how much of what we consider to be part of Arthuriana was tacked on over the course of centuries to become what we know to be the accepted story today. Hume’s Artor is a man concerned with leaving his kingdom better than when he found it, a man well aware of what History can do to your reputation. This is Camelot as it could have happened, with very little myth and hardly any magic, save for a good story well told.There are flaws, of course. Hume commits the oh-so-common sin of not trusting her story enough to let the reader work it out for themselves which is frustrating, especially when there is so much on offer for readers who have an interest in this sort of historical fiction. Also, and I hope it gets caught up for future releases, Chapters 12 and 13 have the same title. However, I enjoyed this as a worthy successor to the first book. I can’t wait for the final volume.2016 reread thoughts: still a lot of fun, but the flaws in this are far more obvious. Many things are spelled out to the reader that need only to be hinted at, Wenhaver is presented without any positive virtues at all so the reader is only left to take her as a villain without any redeeming features, which wouldn't be so bad but the other major female character - Nimue - is presented as so wonderful that it starts to grate a bit. However, I appreciated anew the effort made to show Artor as a warrior king with a savagery lurking not terribly far under the surface and there's a nice callback to a scene from the first book that gave me a real little thrill of foreshadowing finally coming to pass.

  • Gary
    2019-05-20 13:17

    I loved Dragon's Child and absolutely adored Warrior of the West.This is perhaps one of the the most gritting realistic of the Arthurian novels and along with Mary Stewart's Merlin series and Kate McKenzie's Guinevere duo and its follow up, my favourite.It is absorbing , thrilling, heart-wrenching and nail biting. I found it a genuine page turner and often read on beyond the time I had allotted myself to see what happens nextIt is divided into two parts the first the continuation of the defensive war of the Celts led by their High King Arthor against the invading Saxon hordes, the most dangerous of whose chieftains id the savage GlamdringBrutally realistic battle scenes which always have just the right amount of detail to keep you hooked and fascinating cultural depictions, brings the sits, sounds and smells of 5th century Britain to reality.Riveting side story of the captivity and brutal slavery of the Welsh Bedwyr and his eventual escape.And the eventual massive victory of Artor on the Saxons who suffer a massive death toll.The second part of the book is about Artor's marriage to Wenyvar (Guinevere) who in the novel is spoiled, petty, vengeful and cruel.She even attacks a young servant girl mutilating her face. Nimue is the most fascinating character in the novel, a beautiful ash blond child of the Jute woman who was murdered and raped . Nimue was recued as a baby by the warrior Grufydd, she is both wild and has a gentle soul, highly intelligent and sensually beautiful. Hated with insane jealousy by Wenyvar. Murdionn (Merlin) is a scholar, silver haired and clean shaven and ages slowly, The old soldier Targo Artor's Roman sword tutor being another central characer. And then the sinister witch and Artor's half sister Morgan who has aged into ugliness but as dangerous as ever , with a great talent for soothsaying. Her sister Morgause and Morgause' s husband LOt reconcile with Artor through revenge in war on the Saxons who executed their son Gaherys.Then other son the vain and impulsive Gawain has a central role in the saga.Then there is a diabolical serial killer who tortures and slowly murders animals, women and children weaker than himself, the most vile character in the book whose identity I will not reveal but was involved in similar atrocities in Dragon's Child.Unlike some Arthurian novels this one was riveting and absorbing on every page and I so look forward to reading the third in this series The Bloody Cup.

  • Montse Gallardo
    2019-05-18 12:03

    El primero libro de la trilogía lo valoré con 3 estrellas, porque era un libro entretenido de aventuras. Este no pasa de 1 estrella; es malo, malo, malo Vale que Arturo, Merlín y Ginebra (y todos los demás) son personajes de leyenda, de los que apenas hay referencias históricas, pero un mínimo de rigor en la contextualización podría haber en una novela que pretende ser histórica (no lo es), y cuya escritora se define como experta en el tema artúrico (no voy a ser tan tajante en mi negación, porque no la conozco de nada; sólo diré que no se nota)Ahora que Artor y Whenaver se han conocido la historia está derrapando peligrosamente a la típica novela rosa de corte histórico con celta cachas y bien dotado, brusco pero tierno a un tiempo, y de jovencita virginal -rubia, por supuesto- que inocentemente se resiste hasta que se da cuenta de que la "encendida masculinidad" de Artor tiene ciertas ventajas (lo siento, me resulta un poco vomitivo el giro)Por si esto no fuera poco, y para rematar la faena, hacia el final de la novela nos encontramos a nuestros "estimados" personajes en plan CSI con psicópata incluido, y Myrddion (Merlín) ejerciendo de Grissom sin despeinarse ¡Tócate las narices!Todo eso acompañado por expresiones tan medievales como que Artor se crió con carencias afectivas, que Targo pone a funcionar sus neuronas, o que el amor que sueña Whenaver es muy romántico, entre otras (que yo aún no me he recuperado de haber leido en Danza de dragones que el mapa no es el territorio, pero Martin escribe fantasía, no "Historia", se le perdonan todos los deslices...). O que se pasan toda la novela bebiendo vino español; no hispano, ni íbero, ni de Tarraco, ni de Hispalis o Lusitania, no, ESPAÑOL, con un par...Así que mejor me río, porque si tiro el libro por la ventana -que es de lo que me dan ganas- me cargo el lector, y no es planEn fin, que como novela histórica, no hay por donde cogerla. Y como novela sin más -sin etiqueta- es sumamente pretenciosa y ridícula. Mi recomendación es no leerla. Hay muchas otras obras del ciclo artúrico mucho mejores que esta

  • Cassie Hawkings
    2019-05-20 07:57

    I have to say this is a fantastic sequel book Dragon's Child but I have had to stop and start reading this book because of the pacing.It's been 12 blood-soaked years since Artor became High King of the Britons. Over these years, Artor and his loyal band of followers have fought the Saxons and have succeeded on many occasions. He is a good king whom is beloved by his followers and his people. The Saxons want his head on a spike.After defeated the Saxon leader, Ironist, Artor is told to take another woman as his second wife. Unbeknownst to his most of his followers and his people, Artor had been married before to Gallia and fathered a child, Licia, with her. Even after 12 years, Artor still mourns her death at the hands of his father, Uther Pendragon.Wenhaver is a woman not to be messed with. Wenhaver proves to be barren so cannot provide Artor with a son to carry on his legacy. Since the king himself has had multiple affairs before his marriage to Wenhaver has been set in stone, he has said that he has multiple illegitimate children of his own. Wenhaver is portrayed as a woman who loves to sleep around and unlike most Arthurian tales, Wenhaver has an affair with Gawayne, Artor's eldest nephew as opposed to Lancelot who has made no appearance in his book or its predecessor.For kids under the age of 18 to wish to read this book I would have to caution you that there is quite a bit of violence involving both men and women, there is quite a bit of profanity and there is at least two sex scenes in this book. One is more graphic then the other while there is quite a few sexual references and there mentions of rape as well so I would just be caution for anyone who wants to read this book. I overrall enjoyed the book but I think it should have been a bit shorter as it did get a bit boring at times only to be picked up when the violence set in.I forgot to add that there's a childbirth scene and it doesn't go into a lot a detail but there is a bit of blood.

  • Amalie
    2019-05-17 10:05

    I've read quite a number of re-tellings of Arthurian legend, M.K. Hume's interpretation by far is one of the best and one of my favourites. It is a realistically written - this book is refreshingly free of any supernatural happenings - good-read.In is second volume, which opens twelve years after Artor (Arthur) has been crowned High King, Thane Glamdring Ironfist, a fierce Saxon leader continues to attack Artor’s domain. Like in the first novel, Arthur is no idealized king – he is ruthlessly pragmatic, doing whatever is necessary to ensure the survival of his kingdom. These are not only evident in his war strategies but also in his marriage to Wenhaver (Guinevere).Wenhaver is a spoilt, vindictive and cruel young woman. and the marriage is a disaster from the outset. Guinevere fans may raise their eyebrows at her portrayal, but I really wanted to have her executed before the story was over... This is a tale to approach in an unhurried manner. It's not a book to finish on a rainy a day (there's a great chance you falling asleep) but a book to be pondered over and digested slowly. So don't expect to swallow it in one go, you'll find it a highly dissatisfying experience.I am looking forward to start the next novel –

  • Eyehavenofilter
    2019-05-17 09:59

    What a beauty this is. Long and sprawling historical weaving of a large vastly different view of a story we all think we know. Done in a style that wraps us in a mist of old and a shroud of familiar yet strange light, and spirit.this is the way I want to know about what life was like in this age full of honor and dishonor, death and life. Royalty and sacrifice, for the crown. It is a harsh reality, that spares no one. There is no simple magic to save this one or that one, it is cruelty on its worst behavior.who is good, who is bad, who can say, there is no real measure of a man but what he says, does, and thinks. Yet they are all laid bare and must follow the path set before then if history is to be told in its entirety.there were parts that made me cry. In anger, and in pain. And some in absolute anguish. I had to put the words down to catch my breath, in order to continue. that is what a tragic story will do to you,it will rip your innards apart.Hope will stitch it back together again.And the journey will continue.

  • Alejandra Manzanilla ramírez
    2019-05-22 11:00

    Un segundo libro muy interesante, una adaptación de la leyenda o mito a una versión más real y definitivamente la interpretación de la autora me gusta.Mi personaje favorito de este libro es Niniana, hubiera sido la mujer ideal para Artor aunque los dos son de carácter fuerte.Mi personaje más odiado se lo ganó la reina, una versión completamente despreciable, pienso que Artor le aguantó demasiado, entiendo que era mejor callar y aguantar que verse en guerra con dos reyes de tribus muy poderosas pero el precio personal fue muy alto, y al final seguro será mucho peor.Las personas siempre repetimos patrones y en el caso de Artor no es la excepción, como el caso de Botha, se repite nuevamente por decir algo.Siento mucha pena por Artor en este libro, ya que poco a poco se va quedando sólo, personas que quiere se van yendo de su vida. Como se menciona mucho, él es el instrumento para poder estabilizar el país, una persona que fue moldeada en carácter y habilidades para ese fin.

  • Anjanet
    2019-04-24 11:08

    Must say, didn't like book 2 as much as the first book. Mostly because you know/sense all of the bad stuff that must be coming in book 3.What was nice about this book is the slight variations on the story that M.K.Hume makes. The way Hume has used the characters to support Authur is wonderful. And the way he strips those characters away and shows/tells us how this is going to affect Authur is also brilliant. The new take on Queen G being so ANNOYING is heartbreaking, but also refreshes the story line. Definitely will read book 3, but taking a break just for a bit. Don't feel the need to rush into the next one.

  • Shelbi Baham
    2019-04-26 08:54

    For a fiction work, it is very bland. The author writes in a very dry, historical way, presenting facts and events with lots of numbers and battle descriptions and minimal embellishments to the plot lines. The first book in the series was better in this regard, but still dry. If you really like reading about military maneuvers, you may like these books. Otherwise, they are sub-par at best. The trilogy goes through the life of Arthur before his reign and in the early days of his reign, giving details of his early life and family. Once the battle begin however, the plot is lost in military details.

  • Danielle G
    2019-05-21 11:21

    Have you ever read a book where as you are reading a page you are screaming at the characters in your head, "No Don't do that! You are making a huge mistake!" Well I did that a lot in this book in regards to Artor marrying Wenhaver. She is truly a horrible horrible person. Anyway the book kept me reading through the night in order to finish the last half. It's exciting and I love the characters (except Wenhaver of course). I was happy to see the return of Nimue. This book was a great read and I have already begun the third.

  • Amy
    2019-05-10 12:06

    It took a little bit of time to get into the book, as I had taken a bit of a break after reading the first one. But it really took off for me when Artor took the spotlight. Then gradually the secondary characters stole my heart - and tried my patience!Nimue was wonderful, though I had a feeling of dread because I had no idea how the author was going to use the character and she hasn't meant good things in several adaptions I have seen.I lost a lot of sleep because I couldn't put the book down and go to bed!

  • Elise
    2019-04-23 09:02

    The fact I finally got around to reading this book is an accomplishment in and of itself because I read the first book of the trilogy a very long time ago, and had to re-read it recently, so I'm glad I got around to finishing this book.It was more exciting than the first and the character growth is brilliant, M.K. Hume is one of the few writers I think does the Arthurian legend justice with her unique take on it.I especially enjoy how she writes Gawayne.

  • Barry Bridges
    2019-05-09 16:09

    I think I started this book too soon after the first in the series and I lost a bit of interest early on. Just another battle sort of thing. The book picked up, for me, with the arrival of Wenhaver (Guinevere) and Hume has done a fantastic job, once again, of turning a legend into something more realistic. I will leave a reasonable space of time before I attempt "The Bloody Cup" !!!

  • Laurel
    2019-05-09 12:20

    A wonderful book and so beautifully written I'd find myself pausing to savour the words. For me, it doesn't get much better than this, even though I'm reading the books in the trilogy out of order. Now a personal favourite, along with Bernard Cornwell's 'Winter King' trilogy.

  • C. Stuchl
    2019-04-30 13:06

    Thank you Goodreads for the free book. I really liked this version of the King Arthur Legend. The characters were well defined and drew you into the story. It was a very a believable rendition of the ancient legend. Very well done.

  • Laura Jackson
    2019-05-20 15:22

    I thought it was a great installment. I like the way Artor was having this raging battle with himself to not become his father and how he realises just how much he depends on his friends and advisors.

  • Ashleigh Marks
    2019-05-01 10:55

    Brilliant book about Artor (Arthur Pendragon). This trilogy is worth reading to any Arthurian fan.

  • Deborah Roussety
    2019-05-08 12:11

    amazing read,took me into another time and place,thank you M.K.Hume love your work