Excellent book. I went looking for a fun teenage novel with swords and battles, what I got was actually a lot more than just that. The language and writing is really good. I expected the book to be very story-driven and not much given to prose, yet Reeves still throws in beautiful curlicues of language and imagery. I kind of expected a straight-forward “I was at Arthur’s side” story, but the book is very much about the dissonance between the history and legend of Arthur, about the difference between truth and propaganda, and why people both then and now need and love the story of King Arthur.
I particularly love that the central theme of the book is (as Myrddin or Merlin tells the main character) “stories are the only thing that matters”. Making me think of Mike Carey’s The Unwritten, the story is what people die for, kill for, survive for. And Here Lies Arthur shows that that is a double-edged sword, that it can cover great crimes as well as give people hope and strength.
Anybody who loves the Arthurian legends will not be disappointed in this book. Anybody just looking for a good, fun but also interesting read, will not be disappointed in this book.