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Thursday, December 24, 2015

Taliesin by Stephen Lawhead

Taliesin was first published in 1988... when I was 3 yrs old. But it is a fantasy novel based on the legend of King Arthur, so it didn't feel dated at all while I was reading it. Anyhow... there may be some minor spoilers in this review. The book's been out forever, folks.

Taliesin was a hubby pick. He first read the Pendragon Cycle books as a teen and he LOVES them. He read them as a teen, and then again as a young adult. He might have even read them twice as a teen. So we own them and the copy I read was that soft feel that books get when they've been handled a lot. I love that feeling.

Taliesin is the first of the Pendragon Cycle books, and it is the tale of Merlin's parents, Charis and Taliesin. Charis is a royal princess in Atlantis and Taliesin is a foundling in Briton. Taliesin's adopted father had the worst luck in everything in life until he found the infant Taliesin in a bag in a stream. Suddenly he has all the best luck. He ends up king even though he's not his father's oldest son and he scores a hot wife and he builds up a great warband of soldiers to protect his homeland. Taliesin is schooled by the village druid to be a druid himself, and a talented bard.

Charis grows up in the royal household in Atlantis. She's buddies with the royal seer and he gives her private lessons in using the seeing stone to foretell events. She grows up to be a bull dancer. It's kind of like bull fighting, but she dances to elude the bull instead of stabbing it.

Disaster strikes Atlantis, and Charis and her family barely escape with their lives. War strikes Briton, and Taliesin and his family barely escape with their lives.

Taliesin is an epic fantasy novel. It's lengthy and deep, but it never gets mired down in the mud. I feel like I fairly flew through it for how long it is. (Just over 500 pages in my edition.) So even though it might feel like I told you a lot of the plot just now, I really barely skimmed it. There's so much more rich detail in the book itself, and I definitely would encourage others to read it.

I loved the plot and the story and the characters, but I didn't particularly care for the ending. It just seemed to come a little too quickly compared to the other events in the book, and I was left with a number of questions. I suppose (hope) they may be answered in the next book, Merlin. So see: there's a good endorsement: I plan to read the other two books in the series!


Tynga is a 32 years old mom of two, from Montreal, working as a lab technician in an hospital specialized in heart disease. In her free time, she enjoys reading all things Paranormal and photography.

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