Help wanted: arthurian novels

Melissa Proffitt Melissa at Proffitt.com
Fri Sep 19 20:07:03 EDT 2003


I don't read much Arthurian fantasy any more and I've been skimming, so I
don't know if anyone has mentioned this one (probably not as it's a graphic
novel).  It's called _Camelot 3000_ and is one of those "Arthur returns to
England in a time of need" stories, this time in the far future when Earth
is being invaded.  It's all very superheroic in style, lots and lots of
muscles, but what I like about it is that Arthur's chief knights are reborn
in the bodies of modern people...they retain their "true" identities as well
as "remembering" their old ones.  The story of Tristan and Isolde gets a
lovely modern update.  It's about twenty years old but I still enjoy looking
at it.

The Sharan Newman books--I only remember the first one clearly, but I liked
it; the other two were probably okay.  There was a unicorn and Gawain had
some kind of sleeping disorder.

I second Pani's comment about the Teresa Edgerton books.  They seemed more
generically Welsh than specifically Arthurian--but it's been a long time
since I read them.  I did not have a high opinion of her writing and
storytelling abilities.  We bought them because the heroine of the first
trilogy, Teleri, has the same name as our eldest daughter--coincidence,
actually.  I did like the ambience and how authentic the setting felt...they
might still appeal to those looking for an Arthurian-era story.

I had to read _Excalibur_ by Laubenthal because it's a favorite of a friend
of mine.  It dates from the early '70s when the big fantasy rush began and
has all the hallmarks of its age, which might not appeal to young readers.
Yes, that's snobbish, but I didn't finish it and I can finish *anything*.
Fictional style has drifted enough in the last 35 years that books that used
to be very popular light reading are now out of style.  But as an example of
an early Arthurian retelling novel, it's a perfect gem.  I'd use it in a
class, myself. (Also another source for Teleri, which is just not that
common a Welsh name in fiction.)

Melissa Proffitt
(not really very helpful these days)

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