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King Arthur: Tales from the Round Table (Dover Children's Evergreen Classics) Paperback – August 6, 2002
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Top Customer Reviews
One thing that must be kept in mind is that these stories are from a 1902 collection of much older folklore. As such, the style is not what a modern reader may be used to. For example, characterization and motivation are given little attention, and much of the action you'd expect from a book about knights questing is missing. Most battles are generally summed up in the text as "The two knights fought for an hour before Sir Lancelot dealt a blow to the helm to his opponent, who then yielded."
My favorite story from the collections is "What Beaumains asked of the King." At 36 pages, it is the longest single narrative of the book (more pages are given to the Quest for the Holy Grail, but those pages are split between several stories). In this tale, a humble young man comes to Arthur's court, refusing to give his true name. He asks to be knighted and aide a woman who has come seeking aid for her sister who is besieged in her castle. Beaumains ventures forth to rescue the sister, defeating foes along the way as the woman scoffs at the lowly person sent to help her sister, unaware of Beaumains' true nobility.
As mentioned, I really enjoyed the engravings by H.J. Ford. His 28 illustrations do much to bring the story to life, and portray the characters and setting in a very romantic light. Almost every story gets at least one illustration, and the longer ones include several. I'd actually say that Ford's art is my favorite part of the book. It's just so evocative of the source material.
Overall, this is an interesting book for someone who isn't very familiar with the Round Table tales. There isn't as much depth as there could be to the stories, but perhaps that's more in keeping with the original stories, as opposed to modern expectations. The art, however, is definitely well done and makes the volume worthwhile. I'm very happy Dover included the original artwork when issuing King Arthur: Tales from the Round Table.
It tells the basic story of King Arthur, how he became king of England, where he got his sword, and how he died. Some of the stories told, though, I had not heard before, such as "What Beaumains asked of the King" and "The Quest for the Holy Grail".
The book is written clearly and is easy to read. It is a great book to read for enjoyment, or for serious study.
I really liked reading King Arthur: Tales of the Round Table, and hope that, if you choose to read it, you will too!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Loved all the details. I think this is a book that everyone should read.Read more