In Camelot’s Shadow

Written by Sarah Zettel
Review by Suzanne J. Sprague

Peace, hard won by Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table, is in danger as evil magics contrive to help the Saxons wage war against Arthur and reclaim control of the land. Key to evil’s plan is Risa, daughter of Rygehil of the Morelands, who was promised to the evil Euberacon when he saved her mother’s life. Euberacon has always known about Risa’s gift of sight and is now ready to claim his prize. However, Risa wishes to marry, and cannot understand why her father will not give his consent. When the truth is finally revealed, Risa tries to escape her fate by running away. Luckily, she runs into Gawain, a knight reputed as saving, and falling in love with, damsels in distress. With his help, she travels to Camelot to seek the protection of Guinevere.

Those familiar with Arthurian literature will recognize the retelling of classics such as “Gawain and the Green Knight” and “Gawain’s Marriage to Lady Ragnell,” which are intermingled with the author’s original story. Magic and illusion heighten the plot rather than provide a convenient resolution for the perilous adventures of Gawain and Risa and familiar characters such as Arthur, Guinevere, Kai and Agravain are presented with their most recognizable features intact.

Zettel’s artful combination of romance and Arthurian adventures is truly magical to read and is accessible to even those unfamiliar with Arthurian writings.