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The Great Book of King Arthur and His Knights of the Round Table by John Matthews

The most famous and influential work of English fantasy ever published, reimagined for a new generation of readers by John Matthews, one of the world's leading Arthurian experts, and illustrated by internationally acclaimed Tolkien artist, John Howe. The tales of how the boy Arthur drew the Sword from the Stone, or the love of Lancelot and Guinevere, or how the knights of the Round Table rode out in search of the Holy Grail are known and loved the world over. It all began when an obscure Celtic hero named Arthur stepped on to the stage of history, sometime in the sixth century, and oral tales led to a vast body of stories from which, 900 years later, Thomas Malory wrote the famous Morte D'Arthur.

THE GREAT BOOK OF KING ARTHUR presents these well-loved stories for a modern reader, for the first time collecting many tales of Arthur and his knights either unknown to Malory or written in other languages. Here, you will read of Avenable, the girl brought up as a boy who becomes a famous knight. You will learn of Gawain's strange birth, his upbringing amongst poor folk and his final rise to the highest possible rank - Emperor of Rome.

There is also the story of Morien whose adventures are as fantastic and exciting as any to be found in the pages of Malory. In addition, there are some of the earliest tales of Arthur, deriving from the tradition of Celtic storytelling. Here is the original Arthur, represented in such powerful stories as 'The Adventures of Eagle-Boy', and 'The Coming of Merlin', based on the early medieval text Vita Merlini, which gives a completely new version of the great Enchanter's story.

These age-old stories, still as popular today as they were from the Middle Ages onwards, are dramatically brought to life by the luminous paintings and drawings of John Howe, whose work on the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit film trilogies has brought him a world-wide following.

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