130 x 145 x 23mm
This first volume in a trilogy with a new take on the Arthurian legends is interwoven with a story set in medieval times.
The year is 1199, the place the Welsh Marches, where young Arthur de Caldicot practises his tilting and archery, learns to be a dutiful page to his father, and waits impatiently to grow up and become a knight. One day his father's friend Merlin gives him a shining black stone. When Arthur starts to see stories in the stone, his life quickly becomes entwined with that of his namesake, the boy who pulls the sword from the stone.
In this many-layered novel, King Arthur is seen as a figure for all time - an exemplar to his namesake, a mysterious presence influencing not just one time and place but many. The 100 short chapters are almost like snapshots, not only of the mythical past of King Arthur but the real, earthy, uncomfortable Middle Ages.
The turn of the century; uncertainty about the future; war and peace; Christianity and Islam; rationalism and superstition; the sharp contrasts in the lives of rich and poor; all these issues impact on the life of boy in a medieval manor and give the book its uniquely contemporary feel.