Pendragon's Banner

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Pendragon's Banner is an historical fantasy trilogy by the British author Helen Hollick, published by William Heinemann in 1994, and later by Sourcebooks Inc in 2009 and by SilverWood Books in 2011. The three books are a re-telling of the King Arthur legend. They look to show Arthur Pendragon as he might have really been - no magic, fantasy or medieval legend. This is the basic, post-Roman view of Arthur as a battle-hardened warlord.


The Kingmaking[edit]

The semi-historical novel follows the rise of the young Arthur Pendragon after the death of his father, Uther. The book concentrates on Arthur's relationship with Gwenhwyfar and his emerging prowess on the battlefield. The Kingmaking is set in Great Britain during the late fifth century some sixty years after the Roman legions pulled out of the island. By putting King Arthur into a realistic historical setting, some characters from Arthurian legend such as Merlin and Lancelot are left out.

Pendragon's Banner[edit]

Shadow of the King[edit]


The trilogy garnered a number of positive reviews and endorsements. Best-selling historical fiction author Sharon Penman called one of the volumes[which?] "a wonderful book...breathes new life into an ancient legend."[citation needed] According to Publishers Weekly, "Hollick's interpretation is bold, affecting and well worth fighting to defend."[1] Books Magazine called her work ""Uniquely compelling" and "bound to have a resounding and lasting impact on Arthurian fiction."[citation needed] A reviewer in Pendragon Magazine wrote of one of the books:[which?] "Helen Hollick joins the ranks of Rosemary Sutcliff, Mary Stewart and Marion Bradley with this splendid novel,"[citation needed] and Historical Novels Review enthused that one of her books "weaves together fact, legend and inspired imagination to create a world so real we can breathe the smoke of its fires and revel into Romano-British lust for life, love and honour."[citation needed]


  1. ^ Publishers Weekly, November 11, 1996