Monday, August 5, 2019

"Arthur Rex: Ex Lapis" by J.A. Cummings

This book begins with a scene that those of us who enjoy tales about King Arthur and his knights are very familiar with. We get to see a young Arthur Pendragon reveal his true birthright by travelling to Londinium and pulling the sword from the stone when everyone else has failed. As expected, there are some who immediately acknowledge him as their king, while others refuse to believe that it is more than merely a trick to have “Merlin’s puppet” seated upon the throne. And so, it seems that war is inevitable.

In this book, we see a combination of both the familiar stories and an original take on the legend shared by Ms. Cummings. King Arthur is a wonderful tale that has been described in many ways by many writers, but I enjoyed this version. Here, we see how he was not immediately prepared and had to train hard in fighting, battle tactics, as well as study diplomacy and negotiations before he took charge. And while he was always calmer and more determined than those around him, he also knew enough to know how much more he still needed to learn and was prepared to work hard to do so.

One thing for the reader to be aware of is that like the first book in the series, there is a good deal of rather descriptive sex in this book. I believe that all of it was a necessary part of this story and describes how Arthur grows to become the man he is destined to be, but some might find it to be more than they were looking for in an arthurian tale. It is definitely not a story meant for younger readers

This book takes us into the early reign of King Arthur, still in the days when he was fighting to unite the kingdom and find a way to make it a better place for everyone, not just those rich and powerful enough to have whatever or whomever they wished. I enjoyed reading this author’s take on what to me is a fairly familiar tale. (I have long been a fan of Arthurian stories in their many different incarnations.) I greatly enjoyed reading it and I believe that others will as well. I am looking forward to seeing where this author decides to take this tale next. Recommended for those who enjoy King Arthur stories.

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