Arthur: The Always King


Another sumptuously beautiful book. Arthur: the Always King is a straight recounting of the Arthur legends, in Kevin Crossley-Holland's perfectly judged, gently poetic prose. Chris Riddell's glorious illustrations make the stories catch fire.

This is a big, heavy, satisfying book to pore over; it would made a great read-aloud. There is plenty of gore, with beheadings, ogres and knightly duels, but there is also lots of romance, including the great central three-cornered tragedy which is explained simply but powerfully. And of course there is also magic, and a sprinkling of humour. Something for everyone! Which is probably why these tales have retained their attraction for so many centuries, and inspired so many authors and artists to come up with their own variations.

Arthur: the Always King is a perfect introduction to the old stories, a wonderful foundation to build upon.

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