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Historical Fiction. True Crime. Profession: Author. Event Coordinator. Film Executive. The Mists of Avalon is my favorite Arthurian novel of all time, perhaps my favorite novel of all time, and after thirty years since its publication, it is doubtless a classic that has heavily influenced the numerous writers of Arthuriana who have followed. That said, the rest of the series really adds nothing to Arthurian literature because the novels are all prequels about Avalon.

Then Ancestors of Avalon had a plot that seemed to be going nowhere despite an intriguing opening as it traced the flight from Atlantis to the new Avalon. Therefore, it took me nearly two years to get around to reading the next book in the Avalon series, Ravens of Avalon. Before I read this book, I made the mistake of reading the reviews at Amazon, including complaints that the characters were dull and flat, and that may be why I had difficulty getting through the first hundred pages.

Once I sat down and focused on the book, I found myself unable to put it down. Ravens of Avalon has redeemed the series for me and now makes me anxious to read Sword of Avalon.

Celtic Music - Mists of Avalon

Also, it should be noted that if anyone else wants to read this series, there is no order in which to read it. Priestess of Avalon takes place around A.


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All the novels are prequels to The Mists of Avalon —I wish Paxson would consider a sequel because I want to know what happened to Morgan le Fay after the book ended. Ravens of Avalon retells the story of the iconic and historic Queen Boudica of Britain. The basics of her story are well known. The Romans raped her and her daughters, causing her to seek revenge by raising an army against the Romans, an army eventually defeated.

A difficulty many historical novelists have is that the reader already knows how the story is going to turn out; even though I knew Boudica would die in the end, I kept reading, wanting to know how Paxson would twist the ending. The end is tragic; Paxson does not change it in any surprising way, but she makes Boudica come alive and for the reader to understand and follow her motivations.

The Ancestors of Avalon

Her marriage is especially well-depicted as she gets to know a husband who seems standoffish at first until their story becomes a great love story. Of course, Avalon is sort of the spectacle of the novel, and the powers of the priests and priestesses are impressive and fascinating as they engage in magic, including raising mists to hide themselves from the Romans, or have visions of the future, or feel the spirit of a goddess enter them to aid them in battle. I am usually a sucker for this kind of magical realism, the possibility that the Druids knew how to use their minds in ways we have since forgotten.

One passage in particular struck me:. Conflict and competition are necessary. The fury passes through like a great fire, burning weakness away, and in its light the essence is revealed. The strongest in both groups survive. Blood and spirit are blended and what grows from them is stronger still.

One way or another the cycle must continue. The balance must be maintained. I have traced my British ancestors more closely than any others back throughout the Middle Ages, and in one ancestor, Thomas Dudley , the second governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, a descendant of the Barons Dudley and King Edward III of England, I can trace my family tree back to ancestors from every country in Europe, as well as back to ancient Egypt, China, India, Persia, etc.

Marion Zimmer Bradley’s Ancestors of Avalon

The truth then is that race does not matter. As the Raven above says, the blood is mixed from those who strove against each other. I may upset some by taking this a step farther, but in a thousand years, people who died on September 11 th will have descendants also descended from some of the terrorists who led the attacks.

It is the way of the world, we intermarry until race and anger are forgotten.

derramasi.ml | Ancestors of Avalon, Marion Zimmer Bradley | | Boeken

In fact, race does not really exist. Whether you agree with my reasons for enjoying Ravens of Avalon , or you simply like stories of Avalon or druids or Roman and British history, I think Ravens of Avalon is well worth taking the time to read. After The Mists of Avalon , it is the best in the series.