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The Forever King
by Molly Cochran
cover
Synopsis: 
Set in modern and medieval times, The Forever King is the story of King Arthur, reborn as ten-year-old Arthur Blessing, guardian of the Holy Grail.  Arthur's greatest enemy, Saladin, a powerful, almost immortal sorcerer, is determined to possess the Holy Grail.  When Saladin kidnaps Arthur, it is up to former FBI agent Hal Woczniak to rescue the young king and save Camelot. 
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Mass Market Paperback Reprint edition (March 1993) 
Tor Books; ISBN: 0812517164 ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.09 x 6.76 x 4.22 

Amazon.com Sales Rank: 35,149 
Avg. Customer Review:5 out of 5 stars
Number of Reviews: 19
 
Read the Customer Comments: 

In a darkened house not far from the place where Camelot may once have stood, a madman schemes, plotting toward the day when he will wrest the cup that men call the Holy Grail from the boy who is its guardian.

    Arthur Blessing is no ordinary ten-year-old.  The Grail is his by chance, this time, but the power to keep it - a power as ancient as time itself - is his by right.
    Now he must stay alive - battling foul sorcery and indefatigable assassins - long enough to use that power.

THE FINAL STAND

    "I don't know if this is such a good idea," Hal said.  "They are going to spot us here."
    "I'm through running," Arthur said.  "We're going to fight them."
    "Are you kidding?  We don't even have weapons, for pete's sake."  They both turned toward the sound of hoofbeats.  Four horsemen were galloping across the open meadow toward them, scimitars raised overhead.
    "Then we'll fight them alone," Arthur said quietly.
    He's not even afraid, Hal thought.  The boy's eyes seemed to be made of steel.  Arthur was right.  Better to fight and die with honor than to flee and die ignobly.


Reviews
Priase for The Forever King:

"I read two or three pages and got hooked. The Forever King [is] one of the most original things I've read in years.  I can't recommend it highly enough.  Books like this don't come along very ofen."

    -Marion Zimmer Bradley, author of The Mists of Avalon
 "This suspense-filled, action-laden novel supplies a fresh perspective on the King Arthur legend, deftly weaving historical facts together with a large amount of fun and imagination.  Highly recommended."
-Library Journal
 "I am reminded of that masterpice, The Daughter of Time, by Josephine Tey, another book that skillfully interweaves past and present to the enhancement of both."
-Morgan Llywelyn, author of Lion of Ireland
 "A fresh and exciting view of the Arthur legend, full of adventure ranging from ancient Babylon to Camelot to the present day.  I read it in one sitting because I didn't want to put it down."
-Robert Jordan, author of The Dragon Reborn
 "The Arthurian section is well written, with some clever new twists on familiar characters, especially Merlin and Nimue."
-Publishers Weekly


From Kirkus Reviews , May 15, 1992
Arthurian-revival yarn from the authors of High Priest (1989), with dismally unpromising ingredients. Arthur is reincarnated as a ten-year-old Chicago boy; his protector, Galahad, is drunk ex-FBI man Hal Woczniak. The Grail, a magic cup-shaped meteorite that heals at a touch, confers immortality on whoever holds it. For reasons beyond conjecture, this holder turns out to be Saladin (yes, he of Crusades fame). Merlin returns to life, never mind how, having spent centuries as a ghost in vanished Camelot, the latter located, for reasons equally baffling, in Dorset. And most of the action occurs in a present-day England, about which the authors clearly know next to nothing. Millennia ago, escaped slave boy Saladin acquired the magic cup by murdering its kindly Neanderthal keeper, and thus became immortal. Occasionally he loses the cup, so his life is dedicated to keeping it secret. In post-Roman times, Saladin wandered to England, where he became involved in Arthur's experiments with social democracy and accidentally healed the old wizard Merlin of fatal heart failure. Later, when Arthur lay dying of wounds, Saladin not only refused to heal him with the cup but attempted to finish the king off, so Merlin took by force of magic, saved Arthur, then offered him the cup; Arthur refused the cup's awesome power. Later, Saladin recovered the cup and went on to further exploits, while Arthur died and Merlin faded away. Now, in the present, Arthur and Galahad are reunited with Merlin. Saladin, having served time in a mental institution for a series of grotesque murders, breaks out and goes forth to reclaim his cup, which, seemingly by chance, Arthur has acquired along with title to the ruins of Camelot. Given the ingredients, it's no surprise that the doings- -``plot'' is too definite a term--make no sense at all. Neither do the characters offer much appeal. In sum: unmitigated drivel--but it will probably find an audience. -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

Amazon.com Customer Comments
Average Customer Review:5 out of 5 starsNumber of Reviews: 19

A reader from Pennsylvania, USA , June 26, 1999 5 out of 5 stars
Exciting, combines past and present in a grand manner
This book is one of my favorites from my book collection at home. I enjoyed reading this book because of the unique idea and the thoughtful ending. The descriptions made the scenes realistic and unsurpassed in detail. This is a one time wonder book. READ.

A reader from Michigan, USA , May 24, 1999 5 out of 5 stars
Excellent blend of mystical, myth, legend, and history
While rushing through an airport, I bought this book. It was FANTASTIC! Literally, I could not put it down. I was especially fascinated by the tale of the cup and its history. Loved how it wove its way throughout history; the scoundrels and the messiah who celebrated its power. Arthur Blessing was kept in the spirit of King Arthur from the Once and Future King and other stories. I was intrigued and disgusted by Saladin; he was a superb villian. A book that shows the battle between true purity and true evil is rare. This book is a pleasure and a lesson.

Merlin1981@aol.com from A librarian in Wake Forest, NC, USA , May 14, 1999 5 out of 5 stars
One of the most original storylines I've read.
The Forever King is extremely well written, and very original. I've not come across anything like it. The characters (particularly Arthur and Merlin/Taliesin) really come alive. However, I must steer readers clear of the sequel (The Broken Sword). This book ends appropriately without needing a follow-up. If you're looking for something different from your normal "murder mystery" or "suspense thriller", then this is for you.

A reader from The Netherlands , May 1, 1999 5 out of 5 stars
Amazing!
Well, as I said, amazing! I didn't care much for the chapters on Saladin, but the end was so wonderfully great it made up for everything! I've only read a few endings like that, simply superb! Yes, goosebumbs and tears indeed. :)

Matt Walsh (wmmmd@aol.com) from Dallas, Texas , April 1, 1999 5 out of 5 stars
This book is worth it!
I bought this book, not knowing anything more than what the back of the book had to say, and that wasn't much. But in my mind, buying this was worth it. Cochran and Murphy's blend of mythology and modern day life was incedible and I couldn't put it down. Buy the three most recent books, they are worth it.

ylloroze79@apl.com from washington , March 21, 1999 5 out of 5 stars
very interesting, I couldn't put it down
I thought this had to be the best book that I have read. I couldn't put the book down. It makes you wonder if things like that have ever exsisted or if they will ever exsist. Overall I loved it.

ediblecrab@aol.com from Indianapolis, IN , December 28, 1998 5 out of 5 stars
Couldn't put the book down!!
Goose bumps rose all over me when I read the following..." To arms! Your KING calls you to arms!" GO KING ARTHUR!!! I actually cried!!!! I bought this book by chance and when I started reading I couldn't put it down! I love the tales of king Arthur and all his knights so when the authors placed King Arthur in present day I didn't think they could pull it off...but they did! Kudos to the authors! I loved the twist they gave the characters from the olden times of King Arthur to now! I loved this book so much that before I even finished it I had already gone out and bought the sequel. When I was done with the sequel I went out and bought the other books these arthors wrote as well! I am a very finicky reader so it takes a lot to grab my interest in a book! I would recommend this to everyone with an imagination!!!

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