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Wednesday, June 17, 2020

By Force AloneBy Force Alone by Lavie Tidhar
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I've been a fan of Tidhar for some time now, picking up book after book not even giving a peso for the contents, sure that I would be amazed and thrown into a thoughtful tailspin with whatever I encountered.

So what did I see?

An unapologetic retelling of the Arthurian Legend. :)

"Wait!" -- you say -- "Hasn't the Arthurian Legend been done like a million times?"

And I would say, "Yep! And I've read a ton of them, and THIS one not only builds on the twisty-strides of the others, but it subverts them all. Nastily."

Whoah. But how?

Keep in mind, this is a satire wrapped up in the plausible example of post-Roman occupied London full of thugs and jerks and all kinds of nasties wrapped up in their own legends and they're NOT the nice kinds of legends. Indeed, it reads like a whos-who of modern politics.

By Force Alone glorifies the truncheon.

Practically no one is particularly likable. Some may have redeeming qualities, but damn, the way things pan out, following all the standard events of the Arthurian Legend including all the magic and the inception and his death, this particular retelling is pretty damning. :)

Very enjoyable! A must-read for fans of the genre! (Or anyone that thinks that M. Z. Bradley's work was too tame.) :)

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