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Merlin (The Pendragon Cycle, Book 2) by…
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Merlin (The Pendragon Cycle, Book 2) (original 1988; edition 1996)

by Stephen R. Lawhead

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1,753154,025 (3.81)11
Member:james7163
Title:Merlin (The Pendragon Cycle, Book 2)
Authors:Stephen R. Lawhead
Info:HarperCollins (1996), Paperback, 484 pages
Collections:Your library, Read but unowned
Rating:*****
Tags:None

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Merlin by Stephen R. Lawhead (1988)

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» See also 11 mentions

English (14)  French (1)  All (15)
Showing 1-5 of 14 (next | show all)
Rarely have I had such a strong negative reaction to a book. I hated it. And part of the reason, I think, I that the first volume, Taliesin, was superb. But while in Taliesin Lawhead spun an intriguing tale that treated the source material with respect, Merlin quickly becomes a religious tract proclaiming how superior christianity is to the pagan religions that it displaces.

For me, Lawhead did two unforgivable things in this book. First, he makes Merlin a christian and a missionary. Yes, of course the Arthur cycle is part of European christian heritage - but Merlin is ALWAYS the link back to the pagan past, the holder of the magic of ancient knowledge and the oral tradition that stretches back before the christians and even the Romans. To co-opt him as a tool to preach the christian that destroys that tradition, when almost every other aspect of the story already serves that purpose, is both pointless and offensive.

And even worse than this, the author turns aside from writing a fine, gripping, meaningful story with strong religious sentiments and begins to write a sermon. ( )
  Pezski | Jun 8, 2017 |
A Christian look at the Arthurian legend. This follows the immortal son of Taliesin and Atlantean Princess Charis, Merlin. From young prodigy to Kingmaker. This is the immediate precursor to the Arthurian legends. But it takes all the sordid and evil things about Merlin and retells it in such a way as to make you weep and hope that this tale was true. Jesus is a large part of this story. ( )
  BookstoogeLT | Dec 10, 2016 |
Very violent, but otherwise interesting adaptation of Arthurian legend. Appears to be more closely related to the Vulgate cycle and Welsh folklore than anything that Mallory picked up on. ( )
  AliceAnna | Oct 22, 2014 |
Rating: 2.5* of five

The Publisher Says: He was born to greatness, the son of a druid bard and a princess of lost Atlantis. A trained warrior, blessed with the gifts of prophecy and song, he grew to manhood in a land ravaged by the brutal greed of petty chieftains and barbarian invaders.

Merlin: Respected, feared and hated by many, he was to have a higher destiny. for It was he who prepared the way for the momentous event that would unite the Island of the Mighty—the coming of Arthur Pendragon, Lord of the Kingdom of Summer.

My Review: Merlin's first-person narrative of how he makes Arthur into ARTHUR.

More Jesusy stuff. Now admittedly it's not the Roman Catholic horror that's called, very puzzlingly, Christianity (it's not); but the whole subject area grates on me when presented to me as An Undelniable, Inevitable Progressive Event. It wasn't. It made things a lot worse for a lot of people for over a millenium. (Religious wars pretty much non-stop from Western Imperial fall until...wait, until now! So TWO millenia!)

I liked Merlin's first-person narrative voice a lot more than the first book's omniscient narration. But the Atlantean horse pucky and the religious nonsense...well, had it not been for a cute boy wanting me to read his favorite books, I'd've dropped them fast.


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. ( )
1 vote richardderus | Aug 15, 2014 |
Part 1 is solid, good stuff. Part 2 is thoroughly remarkable. Part 3 is so-so. Lawhead has a problem nailing the ending of these novels, which is too bad. ( )
1 vote chriskrycho | Mar 30, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 14 (next | show all)
Entertains and tantalizes... Fascinating... An exciting and thoughful addition to the ranks of Arthurian fantasy
added by Steenf65 | editLocus
 

» Add other authors (12 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Stephen R. Lawheadprimary authorall editionscalculated
Hildebrandt, GregCover artistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hildebrandt, TimCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Posen, MikeCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Ten rings there are, and nine gold torcs
on the battlechiefs of old;
Eight princely virtues, and seven sins
for which a soul is sold;
Six is the sum of earth and sky,
of all things meek and bold;
Five is the number of ships that sailed
from Atlantis lost and cold;
Four kings of the Westerlands were saved,
three kingdoms now behold;
Two came together in love and fear,
in Llyonesse stronghold;
One world there is, one God, and one birth
the Druid stars foretold

S. R. L.
Oxford, 1987
Dedication
To the memoyr of James L Johnson
First words
They were going to kill Arthur.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0380708892, Mass Market Paperback)

He was born to greatness, the son of a druid bard and a princess of lost Atlantis. A trained warrior, blessed with the gifts of prophecy and song, he grew to manhood in a land ravaged by the brutal greed of petty chieftains and barbarian invaders.

Merlin: Respected, feared and hated by many, he was to have a higher destiny. for It was he who prepared the way for the momentous event that would unite the Island of the Mighty—the coming of Arthur Pendragon, Lord of the Kingdom of Summer.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:37 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Born of nobility and possessing magical talents, Merlin works to prepare an England abandoned by its Roman occupiers for the coming of Arthur Pendragon.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 3 descriptions

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