68 books like Bliss & Blunder

By Victoria Gosling,

Here are 68 books that Bliss & Blunder fans have personally recommended if you like Bliss & Blunder. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Arthur Rex: A Legendary Novel

Cory O'Brien Author Of Zeus Grants Stupid Wishes: A No-Bullshit Guide to World Mythology

From my list on King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.

Who am I?

Cory O’Brien, author of such books as Zeus Grants Stupid Wishes: a No-Bullshit Guide to World Mythology, grew up reading myths and legends of all sorts, and turned that passion into a career with the advent of his extremely serious mythology website. He has always had a fondness for the Arthurian Legend in particular, ever since his father read him Howard Pyle’s King Arthur books as a child, and he realized he could use them as a moral justification for hitting other kids with big sticks.

Cory's book list on King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table

Cory O'Brien Why did Cory love this book?

Arthur Rex tells the same story as Le Morte D’Arthur, but in a radically different way. Where Mallory idolizes the knights and nobles of Arthur’s court, Thomas Berger paints them in the most unflattering light possible. Everyone is a cretin, a sex maniac, or both, and their backwards morals are used as clever mirrors of our own modern moral failings. Arthur Rex is probably the funniest version of the Arthurian Legend that I’ve read. It’s got its tongue firmly lodged in its cheek. Even so, the ending managed to make me cry, so props to Berger for capturing the full range of emotions with this one.

By Thomas Berger,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Arthur Rex as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Reinterpreting and expanding upon the Arthurian legend, the author begins to inject his own personality into the narrative, which constitutes a salute to the Age of Chivalry


Book cover of Le Morte D'Arthur

Tina Zee Author Of Fires of Brigantia

From my list on romantic Celtic Britain: Druids, Romans and female warriors.

Who am I?

I love British history. I am fascinated by ancient roots; legends and myths arising from around the Roman invasion. Stories of Boudicca, Casswallen, Celtic legends, and Arthurian tales hold me in a world of imaginings and anticipation. These exciting stories have been told and retold, but Cartimandua, Warrior Queen of Brigantia is new to me. She, a Yorkshire lass like me – led the largest tribe in Britain. I have become absorbed into the iron-age lives and loves of her Brigantia. The interwoven links between known facts and fantasy intrigue me. My favourite books here encouraged my journey of discovery; the old birthing the new. The legends from Britain grow.

Tina's book list on romantic Celtic Britain: Druids, Romans and female warriors

Tina Zee Why did Tina love this book?

The first printing of this book in c.1470 laid the foundation for our popular, very British myths about Arthur and the Round Table.

I was absorbed by the legends of this great king and his knights; of his desire to bring honour and peace to our island. I at once fell in love with the young king, then wept over his demise when he discovered his wife’s affair with Sir Lancelot.

The thread flowing though these stories, and which eventually leads Arthur to his end, is one of striving for honour above all things. I was so inspired that I drew up an ancestral tree from its pages, so I could see at a glance where the knights linked together with their great leader. I still have that work.

By Thomas Malory, William Caxton (editor),

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Le Morte D'Arthur as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This work has been selected by scholars as being culturally important and is part of the knowledge base of civilization as we know it.

This work is in the public domain in the United States of America, and possibly other nations. Within the United States, you may freely copy and distribute this work, as no entity (individual or corporate) has a copyright on the body of the work.

Scholars believe, and we concur, that this work is important enough to be preserved, reproduced, and made generally available to the public. To ensure a quality reading experience, this work has been…


Book cover of The Mists of Avalon

Helen Fulton Author Of A Companion to Arthurian Literature

From my list on sensible stories about King Arthur.

Who am I?

I came to the Arthurian legends through the medium of medieval Welsh literature, a subject that had intrigued and challenged me since I was an undergraduate. I found the language impenetrable and yet beautiful, while the literature it encoded was fascinatingly unlike the literary traditions of England and France. I wanted to connect with a version of Arthur that preceded the romance traditions of France and England and bears witness to a much older culture and social organisation. Though I've learned to love other versions of Arthur, and indeed I teach the Arthurian legends as part of my academic work, the stark drama of the Welsh poems and tales continues to intrigue me.

Helen's book list on sensible stories about King Arthur

Helen Fulton Why did Helen love this book?

Before the appearance of ‘franchise’ novels set in an Arthurian world, and even before the genre of ‘fantasy writing’ had established itself, the American writer Marion Zimmer Bradley published one of the most remarkable novels about Arthurian Britain and its cast of characters.

Well researched and deeply imbued with the colours of a powerfully-imagined world, the novel refocuses the events of Arthur’s life from the point of view of the women who surround him, especially Morgaine (Morgan le Fay) and Igraine, Arthur’s mother.

This was the first feminist retelling of the Arthurian story, one in which Arthur was no longer the focus of the action, and when I first read the novel I found the audacity of this inversion captivating. 

By Marion Zimmer Bradley,

Why should I read it?

9 authors picked The Mists of Avalon as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Here is the tragic tale of the rise and fall of Camelot - but seen through the eyes of Camelot's women: The devout Gwenhwyfar, Arthur's Queen; Vivane, High priestess of Avalon and the Lady of the Lake; above all, Morgaine, possessor of the sight, the wise, the wise-woman fated to bring ruin on them all...


Book cover of The Sword and the Circle: King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table

Maggie Freeman Author Of Castles

From my list on the magic of castles.

Who am I?

I’m a writer of historical novels and primary literacy books, and a poet. I was born in Trinidad and live in London. So why am I writing about the magic of castles? I’ve loved visiting them since I was a child, when I’d run round them and imagine what had happened there. Back home, I’d immerse myself in reading legends and fairy stories—at bedtime, lying in my top bunk, I'd make up stories to entertain my sister in her bottom bunk. So it was natural to move on to writing fictionthe novel I’ve just completed is about King Canute. I’ve written primary literacy books for Collins, Oxford, and Ransom.

Maggie's book list on the magic of castles

Maggie Freeman Why did Maggie love this book?

This is a vivid, dramatic and well-paced version of the story of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. It is set in a legendary time full of castles such as Tintagel, or as here: "Meanwhile Sir Lancelot had lain six days and six nights prisoned in the vault below Sir Meliagraunce’s castle, and every day there came a maiden who opened the trap and let food and drink down to him on the end of a silken cord. And every day she whispered to him, sweet and tempting…" I love the resonance of Sutcliff’s writing; rereading it just now, I couldn’t resist reading it out loud just for the beauty of the sound of the language—something I’m very conscious of because I write poetry.

By Rosemary Sutcliff,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Sword and the Circle as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

Rooted in folklore, medieval ideals of chivalry, and the last gallant strugglesof the British against the Saxon invaders, the legends of King Arthur have been told in song and story since the middle ages.

The Sword and the Circle tells of the birth of Arthur, the gift of Excalibur, the forming of the Round Table and the first noble quests of its knights until the arrival of Percival . . .


Book cover of The Once and Future King

David L. Robbins Author Of War of the Rats

From my list on love and war and describing both battlefields.

Who am I?

I’ve penned (so far) seventeen novels, most set during some historical conflict or other, all of them revolving around intense personal relationships (loyalty, love, betrayal, those sorts of profound truths). I tend to read the sorts of books I wish to write. I also teach creative writing at a university (VCU); I tell my students that if they want to really know what a character is made of, shoot at them or have them fall in love. In my own work, I do both.

David's book list on love and war and describing both battlefields

David L. Robbins Why did David love this book?

Maybe this is cheating, but it’s still a book set during a war, albeit a fantastical one.

But come on: Arthur, Guinevere, Lancelot, Merlin, Nimue, Pellinore, Gawain, Mordred, the Round Table–I may never have read a more powerful scene (or seen such, in the play) as when Arthur cheers for Lancelot to ride and save Guinevere from a fire which Arthur himself set!

Moving, with great, classic prose typical of the time and White’s contemporaries C.S. Lewis and Tolkien. 

By T. H. White,

Why should I read it?

11 authors picked The Once and Future King as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Voyager Classics - timeless masterworks of science fiction and fantasy.

A beautiful clothbound edition of The Once and Future King, White's masterful retelling of the Arthurian legend.

T.H. White's masterful retelling of the Arthurian legend is an abiding classic. Here all five volumes that make up the story are published together in a single volume, as White himself always wished.

Here is King Arthur and his shining Camelot, beasts who talk and men who fly; knights, wizardry and war. It is the book of all things lost and wonderful and sad; the masterpiece of fantasy by which all others are…


Book cover of The Guinevere Deception

Robyn Tocker Author Of What We Didn't Say: An Ever After Tales Collection

From my list on fairy tale retellings for the young at heart.

Who am I?

I have loved fairy tales since I was a little girl and watched my first Disney movie. Over the years, I’ve read many fairy tale retellings, as well as the original versions. I love how writers can see a story like Beauty and the Beast and find ways to make an almost completely new story, but still hold true to the original concepts of the fairy tale. Fairy tales connect us to our childhood and when we read these new versions, it lets us relive a part of our childhood. Not many books can do that! 

Robyn's book list on fairy tale retellings for the young at heart

Robyn Tocker Why did Robyn love this book?

The Guinevere Deception is a brilliant Camelot retelling that drew me in for many reasons, the main one being the friendships between the women in White’s book. Guinevere has strong connections to the women close to her and this helps her take on her new rule as Camelot’s queen. I also loved how White made the famous knight Lancelot a woman, which further plays with the King Arthur legend. As if that wasn’t enough to recommend this book, White kept readers guessing with the romance in this book. Who will Guinevere choose? Morded? Arthur? Someone else? You have to keep reading the trilogy to find out!

By Kiersten White,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Guinevere Deception as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Fascinating. . . . Kiersten White has taken the best parts of the Arthurian legend and made them all her own."--Renée Ahdieh, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Wrath and the Dawn series.

A new fantasy series set in the world of Camelot that bestselling author Christina Lauren calls "brilliant," reimagining the Arthurian legend . . . where nothing is as magical and terrifying as a girl.

Princess Guinevere has come to Camelot to wed a stranger: the charismatic King Arthur. With magic clawing at the kingdom's borders, the great wizard Merlin conjured a solution--send in Guinevere to…


Book cover of Arthur in Medieval Welsh Literature

Nicholas J. Higham Author Of King Arthur: The Making of the Legend

From my list on the origins of King Arthur.

Who am I?

As a university historian and archaeologist my focus has been the Early Middle Ages. In the 1990s I wrote several books about the fifth and sixth centuries which barely mentioned Arthur but popular histories and films based on his story just kept coming, so I decided to look again at his story and work out how and why it developed as it did. I have published three well-received books on the subject, each of which builds on the one before, plus articles that have been invited to be included in edited volumes. I disagree with much in the five books above but collectively they reflect the debate across my lifetime. It is a great debate, I hope you enjoy it. 

Nicholas' book list on the origins of King Arthur

Nicholas J. Higham Why did Nicholas love this book?

Oliver Padel is a linguist specializing in early Welsh and Cornish and as such the ideal guide to Arthur’s presence in early Celtic literature. While acknowledging that the earliest datable instances come in the Historia Brittonum in 829-30, his view is that Arthur began as a figure of Celtic mythology and was only later converted into a pseudo-historical figure fixed in the past. In that sense, the early Arthur is the individual in the Historia Brittonum in the section called Mirabilia (Wonders), where he is used as a way of explaining landscape features and the names given to them, who has then been adapted to be a British general fighting 12 battles in chapter 56. This has strongly influenced ways of looking at the evidence in recent years and it deserves our attention.

Personally, I don’t agree with it for two reasons. First of all is the whole issue of…

By O.J. Padel,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Arthur in Medieval Welsh Literature as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A fascinating survey of the numerous references to Arthur found in medieval Welsh literature emphasising the diverse literary genres used and the multifaceted portrayal of the character. New edition.


Book cover of The Winter King

David Z. Pyke Author Of Rescuing Crockett

From my list on elements of historical adventure fiction.

Who am I?

My passion for historical adventure and Texas history stems from my heritage: I’m a native Texan related to one of the Alamo defenders. My great-great-great-great-great-granduncle, Isaac Millsaps, was one of the Immortal 32, the reinforcements from Gonzales who answered William Barret Travis's call for help, rode to San Antonio, and died in the Alamo on March 6, 1836. My relationship with words began in elementary school, where I read Beowulf and Dracula by the time I was 10 years old (probably explains a lot about me). I began writing for newspapers in 1975 and have been writing professionally ever since.

David's book list on elements of historical adventure fiction

David Z. Pyke Why did David love this book?

I chose this because this is how historical adventure is done. Cornwell brilliantly creates authentic characters, setting, dialogue, plot, and conflict.

The Winter King is the first book of the Warlord Trilogy, which is the best retelling of the Arthur legend I’ve ever encountered, but this could be about any of his novels and series. He’s written about the Stone Age, the Dark Ages, Henry V, Alfred the Great, and the Napoleonic wars. He even took on Shakespeare with Fools and Mortals.

Cornwell’s battle sequences are the best in the business, his storylines are compelling, his characters are memorable, his pacing is perfect, and his worlds are immersive. Cornwell is the acknowledged master of the genre.

By Bernard Cornwell,

Why should I read it?

12 authors picked The Winter King as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Uther, the High King of Britain, has died, leaving the infant Mordred as his only heir. His uncle, the loyal and gifted warlord Arthur, now rules as caretaker for a country which has fallen into chaos - threats emerge from within the British kingdoms while vicious Saxon armies stand ready to invade. As he struggles to unite Britain and hold back the Saxon enemy, Arthur is embroiled in a doomed romance with beautiful Guinevere.


Book cover of The Warlord Chronicles

Tom Pugh Author Of The Devil's Library

From my list on historical adventures that make you think.

Who am I?

People give me funny looks when I say my historical novels are autobiographical. Yes, I spend months doing research, but the idea for The Devil’s Library actually came from a motorbike trip through Europe (think horses for motorbikes) and the friendship at its heart is partly a homage to the Shane Black scripted buddy movies I grew up with (Lethal Weapon, The Last Boy Scout...). Every great historical novel is a journey from the present to the past, in other words. We take something with us when we crack the spine. And – when it works – find something life-changing to bring back home with us at The End. 

Tom's book list on historical adventures that make you think

Tom Pugh Why did Tom love this book?

Ok, so it’s a trilogy rather than a single book – an epic retelling of the legend of King Arthur and his knights – but what a trilogy! No one who’s read these books will forget what it feels like to have the life squeezed out of them at the centre of a shield wall, with spear-blades edging inexorably closer...

Like The King Must Die, The Warlord Chronicles recount a legend with so much verve and detail you’re left thinking this must be the way it really happened. Above all, it’s a moving study of heroes at the end of an age of heroes. However much they might be willing to die trying, not even the greatest warriors – or the greatest magicians – can stand against the tide of history. 

By Bernard Cornwell,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Warlord Chronicles as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Title In This Collection:- The Winter King Excalibur Enemy of God The Winter King Uther, the High King of Britain, has died, leaving the infant Mordred as his only heir. His uncle, the loyal and gifted warlord Arthur, now rules as caretaker for a country which has fallen into chaos - threats emerge from within the British kingdoms while vicious Saxon armies stand ready to invade. Excalibur Arthur has crushed Lancelot's rebellion, but at a cost. Guinevere's betrayal has left him reeling, and his Saxon enemies seek to destroy him while he is weak. Chaos threatens to engulf Britain. Yet…


Book cover of Elanor and the Song of the Bard: The Once and Future Chronicles, Book 1

Brae Wyckoff Author Of The Orb of Truth

From my list on epic fantasy that are under the radar.

Who am I?

I grew up playing Dungeons & Dragons. I’m always on the hunt for not just good but great stories. One of the most profound things I have done revolving around fantasy writing was walk the same streets as the legends walked. Oxford, UK is a magical location and the place where Narnia and The Hobbits were born. I visited CS Lewis and JRR Tolkien gravesites. I visited their homes where they wrote their works. Adventure is around every corner in life. If we choose it. Here is a dwarven proverb from my book series, “May your light shine bright and blind your enemies.”

Brae's book list on epic fantasy that are under the radar

Brae Wyckoff Why did Brae love this book?

Wowzers! I’m a sucker for Merlin and King Arthur so I gobbled this one up. I was not disappointed but instead enamored by the characters and Angela’s writing style.

Fantastic storytelling that truly brings you in and doesn't let you go. The opening chapter drew me in deep and I couldn’t stop reading from there. Seeing Merlin so emotionally tortured after the fall of Arthur was an eye opener. Definitely grab this one.

By Angela R. Hughes,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Elanor and the Song of the Bard as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“Merlin…Merlin!” Elanor desperately called out, reaching to him. Like a ghost she stood across the chasm, her arms outstretched and her raven black hair blowing behind her in the wildness of the wind.

“Please, Elanor!” Merlin cried out. “Elanor!”

He couldn’t lose her this time. This time he would reach her. This time he would grip her hands and not let go. The wind tore violently between them, like an angry beast threatening to separate them…

Merlin was all Elanor could think of since her strange dreams had begun. She kept reminding herself that he was not real. He was…


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Interested in King Arthur, Knights of the Round Table, and blackmail?

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