Merlin's Blade by Robert Treskillard
Book 1 of the Merlin's Spiral trilogy
Back cover copy:
When a meteorite crashes near a small village in fifth-century Britain, it brings with it a mysterious black stone that bewitches anyone who comes in contact with its glow -- a power the druids hope to use to destroy King Uther's kingdom. The only person who seems immune is a young, shy, half-blind swordsmith's son named Merlin.
As his family, village, and even the young Arthur, are placed in danger. Merlin must face his fears and his blindness to take hold of the role ordained for him. But when he is surrounded by adversaries, how will he save the girl he cherishes and rid Britain of this deadly evil ...without losing his life?
The plot was well forged. Full of excitement every step of the way and many twists. I admit to not having a clue most of the time where Treskillard was going but I took that as a good sign. The ending was very satisfying. Sometimes the plot became a little bogged down with some of the songs, which I know were put there for a reason. Otherwise the other historical elements were woven in naturally and kept me fascinated at how much the author knew.
The characters were well fleshed out. Treskillard is a master at letting you get under the skin of his characters. One challenge is Merlin's partial blindness but he manages to describe things so well despite the blurry images Merlin is able to see.
Christian element: Merlin believes in God despite all obstacles but this does not weigh down the story line with a "holier than though" feeling. The author does a fabulous job of keeping true to the Christian message without being preachy.
Conclusion: I really enjoyed this book! As a first book by a debut author, it delivers a wonderful story! I've always enjoyed stories about Merlin and Treskillard does a wonderful job of weaving in new elements to the story while keeping true to the stories already present. Although this has been marketed mainly to the YA market I believe that many adults, who love historical fantasy, will love this book as well.
I give it
If you want to find out more about this book or other ones written by Robert Treskillard you can visit his blog (there are some great contests going on right now in preparation for the release of his second book).
Here are the links if you are looking to purchase the book in Canada or the States.
Thank you very much to Harper Collins Canada for the free copy of this book. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed are my own.