This was one of the best books ever It was just enchanting, and yes, it was a wicked day at the end, but I expected that, and although the last chapter was rather dismal, I found that the beauty of the last paragraph of the epilogue made up for it.The characters were all well crafted and intriguing Even the characters just introduced in this book, like Mordred and the Orkney boys, were so fun to follow And building on Arthur and Morgause from previous books was great too, because you can really see how they ve evolved for better or worse and yet they are still very much the same I loved Mordred, and he was very believable, and despite his over ambition, he never ceased being a good character, who means well, even if he is naturally inclined to do anything to rule and try to subtly get Guinevere for himself But it wasn t in a bad way he wasn t the villain that he is crafted as in other books It really is ambition as opposed to malicious intent It was beautiful this was introduced, because when he was young, living as a fisherman s boy when he didn t know he was really the high king s son, he would watch the far off Orkney castle and wish to be there, feeling as though he belonged there and had some nobler destiny.I found Arthur s actions not very believable near the end, but it kept the story true to the legends In the author s note, Mary Stewart tells us about some of her sources and the stories from Thomas Mallory s Le Morte d Arthur King Arthur and the Legends of the Round Table I didn t read Mallory s book I tried, but the old English was unbearable but it was neat to see what aligned with Mary Stewart s story and what she expanded on.I liked Nimue s role in the story, even though it wasn t large, because you just saw here in flashes in certain scenes, glimpses of prophecy and magic sprinkled like fairy dust I would have liked to see Merlin again, but as Nimue said, she is Merlin has his memories etc But Merlin isn t dead yet as we saw from the previous book so what was he doing anyways I found a lot of what the Orkney boys did was very frustrating like, ahem, killing people, enemies and fellow knights alike , but it was almost inevitable, the way they were brought up So this again is Morgause s fault really I still liked the boys characters, and I was so sad when Gareth died this isn t a spoiler, since it happens in every Arthurian tale , even though I knew it was going to happen, because he was really the only one who came out good in the end.So all in all, this was an amazing story and I m sad that I ve finished the series However, there is another related book called The Prince and the Pilgrim that Mary Stewart wrote, so I ll have to read that next. Arrrghhh, this book Okay, on the good side Stewart knew the Arthurian material well and handled it with confidence, often bringing in small details in ways which were a delight to spot but which didn t particularly harm the narrative if you didn t spot them And it s an interesting take on Mordred a loyal son to Arthur, once he knows about it, taking up much the same sort of relationship as between Merlin and Ambrosius, or Arthur and Merlin His emotions are for the most part really well done his ambition, his determination, how he fights against his fate and ultimately serves it.But Arthur In the last quarter or so of The Wicked Day, Stewart breaks her entire previous characterisation for Arthur He becomes irrational, forgets who he can trust, takes advice from the wrong people ignores the advice of people like Nimue, whose power comes from Merlin He forgets what s important forgets important plans that he made and just gives way to suspicion and slander He endangers everything, and for what For suspicions that just chapters before he knew were unfounded.The way I read it, Stewart broke her own story s backbone by insisting that everyone except the women remain blameless She didn t want to blame Arthur or Mordred or Bedwyr, so she palmed some of it off on Gawain s rash nature, some of it on Mordred s latent ambition, and some on Arthur being an idiot in ways he hasn t been at any other point in the series She couldn t resist heaping calumny on the women Morgause committed incest knowingly with her brother, and then wanted to commit incest again with the son born of that union What the hell The other books well established Stewart s near inability to handle the women of the Arthurian mythos surprising given the relatively active and capable heroines of her mystery romances , but this is just desperate It reeks of pushing everything off onto the female characters, but she had to do it because she decided that it didn t make sense for Mordred and Arthur to do things they do in some branches of the mythos in some kind of wrong headed attempt to marry it all together, or to follow the example of others cough, Malory who didn t manage to bring it all together It just won t go.And I can kind of get it I did enjoy the little references I noticed, for example to other sons of Arthur We want to admire the Arthurian heroes, and we want the best of all of them the just and strong king, the heroic seneschal, etc, etc And I was badly served in this, since Gawain is an impetuous idiot given to murder in this version, and also my favourite knight in the general mythology But Stewart tried to get everyone out alive , or at least their reputations few of them actually survive, which is kind of a relief given the contortions she went through in The Last Enchantment to keep Merlin alive , and that doesn t work.It s so frustrating, partially because I get the impulse, and I liked the relationship between Arthur and Mordred here The treatment of women aside, I quite enjoyed the first three quarters, or even four fifths But But Stewart broke her own story and characterisation because she couldn t make a hard decision, as far as I can see, and the story is critically weakened by it.Originally posted here. Best Books, The Wicked Day By Mary Stewart This Is Very Good And Becomes The Main Topic To Read, The Readers Are Very Takjup And Always Take Inspiration From The Contents Of The Book The Wicked Day , Essay By Mary Stewart Is Now On Our Website And You Can Download It By Register What Are You Waiting For Please Read And Make A Refission For You The Wicked Day explores the story of Mordred prophesized to bring doom to Arthur Mordred in this version is certainly an ambitious young man but not a villain or evil as Stewart herself notes other accounts may have made him out to be, but instead perhaps a victim of circumstances Mordred is sensible and level headed very different from his half brothers, who are inclined to fly off the handle The other Arthur book I read earlier this year was for younger readers, where although the characters were presented as human with their fair share of flaws, they come across as far heroic closer to the brave knights of fairy tales This, however, has them with all their shades not just black and white but all their insecurities, emotions, ambitions, treachery, and follies as much as the positive shades of their characters coming through Gwaine rather surprised me towards the end, when we see a side of him that one didn t quite expect This was a well written and very engaging read This was my first Mary Stewart and I m looking forward to reading of her books. So, this was the last book of four and I must say thoroughly enjoyed them An epic telling of the Arthur saga if ever there is one I would give 5 to the series as a whole if this was possible, but as individual books tend to lean to a very solid 4 for each All books written with a wonderful descriptive style that keeps the reader enthralled from beginning to end What I liked about this last book which rounds off the story was the slant given to Modred In the first three books we learn very little of Mordred apart from Merlin s prophecies and his mother s Morgaus , treachery Giving the reader the impression all the time that Mordred will be the typical evil hand of his mother as in most Arthur stories However, here we learn another story and to be honest a much believable one This book is almost dedicated to Mordred s rise and fall which is also inextricably connected to his father s as well Mordred I found to be quite likeable and at times even felt sorry for him He is a victim of circumstances and conspiracies happening around him and while trying to keep the peace on all sides falls foul of Arthur s vengeance due to a number of falsehoods that are reported to Arthur Therefore, Mordred finds himself in a catch 22 situation Be damned if you do, be damned if you don t He is not totally innocent and without fault, but his ambitions leads him to make several several misjudgements, but possibly quite unintentional Although he proves himself to be a just and able ruler in his own right and indeed had a big following Then there is Arthur Relatively old Arthur, set in his ways and not being able to relinquish his power As a ruler he should really now step down for newer, fresher ideas from a younger man for a younger generation Not really being in touch with the mood of his people and those he leads.Therefore two worlds collide which leads to the inevitable end of a father and son face off which no one wins and both end up dead The normal end to the Arthur saga If you like Arthur stories then this series definitely belongs to the a must read category. Holy moly this was bad I lost any sense of interest in this book about 1 3 of the way through I think that Stewart did the best she could She wanted to keep the legend of Arthur and his Round Table on point as much as possible However, the characterizations in this whole book were off for me Arthur pretty much is not that smart Mordred is just misunderstood And Guinevere is not bright at all, and is only wanted by every man it seems due to her beauty I don t read any of Marion Zimmer Bradley s books any, but I still like her look at the King Arthur legend much better than this series because she ties things up a lot better by looking at the growing conflict between the pagan religions and the growing spread of Christianity She also managed to make every woman and man in the story three dimensional.The Wicked Day follows a lot of Mallory s story about the final days of Camelot Unlike with previous books I just found myself bored since I have read the poems and other books about it I was hoping for a different spin, but besides a few details that Stewart changes here and there, everything is the same.I think the thing that threw me a lot though is that this book was detached than the other three I think not having Merlin as a narrator in this one hurt the book I didn t get a true sense of anyone this time through As I already said, everyone felt very one dimensional to me No one had a brain in their head either Morgause and others who have been causing problems in the last two books are pretty much done away or put aside in a few sentences or two.I think the ending was supposed to have me feel pity for Mordred, but I didn t We just have him laying with a fatal wound knowing that his father was being taken away to be healed Considering that he was doing what he could to be crowned king and to take Guinevere as his wife I felt meh towards the guy I think what gets me is that Mordred falls in love with Guinevere and Stewart makes it that he is doing everything he can to have her I hate story lines that have it that some poor man had his head turned by a woman and if not for that maybe Mordred could have been a good person. What a great culmination to the series i love the way Mary Stewart portrays Mordred in this version I don t want to give too much away but don t expect the bad guy traitor of Arthur we have so come to accept This is a re read and I still consider it a fantastic series. Leaving back the story of Merlin, the author leads us to the story behind the ultimate and fatal battle that is the epitome of King Arthur s history This story is followed through the look of Mordred, who has the role of the bad guy in the whole affair The author, however, follows a different approach presenting him to have much complex motivations By watching him from childhood to the end, we see a man who wants to do the right thing, is sensitive to injustice, has logical thinking, and can control his impulses, is willing to change these things that have been stagnant and is in spite of his aspirations a positive person that the gradual revelation of his origins does not make him change to the worst Fate, however, is playing him a nasty game as enemies multiply and his allies are driven by their impulse, causing chaotic situations The climax of course is his conflict with Arthur, but the author chooses to present it as a result of misunderstandings and unfortunate coincidences It is certainly quite interesting to introduce a different version of the final conflict, with the author putting us in a very nice way at Mordred s position, showing us how he perceives things, and so many questions arise on issues of justice and the inevitability of human fate, but in some places there is no such interest The ultimate battle, for example, certainly is not written in a particularly fascinating way, while the constant search for coincedences to justify the course to it does not bring the best results So, in a few words, what I m saying is that it s definitely a pretty interesting book, but the problem is that it does not provide the necessary peak in the story in the way it should do it ,. 4.5 This book is only part of a series in Goodreadsland Lady Stewart quite clearly wrote this novel as a standalone she just revisited a legendary world she loved So a part of this story runs parallel to And some characters are realised slightly differently, most notably Nimu in this reinterpretation of a well known legend.But once you readjust your expectations, this is a cracking tale Morgause remains evil people don t have to wrong her to get bumped off and her interest in her sons is, at best, capricious The damage Morgause does to her four sons by Lot is enormous and well shown by Stewart.When Mordred becomes part of Morgause s world his instincts help to keep him safe for a time Once Mordred is also part of his father s world his destiny is inevitable although view spoiler Nimu does try to avert it hide spoiler 4.5 starsThe wicked day of destiny, as Malory calls it, is the day when Arthur s final battle was fought at Camlann In this battle, we are told, Arthur and Medraut fellfrom the author s notes provided at the end of this book.This is what we know of Mordred, and the subsequent legend has painted him to be a cunning and selfish bastard, who rose against his father, Arthur, and in an attempt to seize his kingdom brought them both low What if he were none of those things What if he were caught in this destiny foretold by Merlin in the same way that Arthur is caught in it What if he were a man with faults and strengths This, indeed, is the logical truth of this story, and this is Mordred Mary Stewart gives us In The Wicked Day, Stewart does for Mordred what she did for Merlin in the trilogy, she humanizes him She is so skilled at opening up a legend and finding a man, at filling the gaps of the story in a way that make you nod your head and agree, it might have been like this, that she takes my breath away.I am always tempted to say that this novel does not achieve the heights of the trilogy, but that is because I am too enamoured of Merlin, whose character touches the very soul of me An unfair comparison, because Mordred is not Merlin and his story cannot ever offer the same kind of richness, no matter whose hands you might put it into What Stewart is able to do with this novel is every bit as amazing, for she turns a legend on its head without deviating from its particulars one iota.When Arthur fathers Mordred, Merlin tells him he has simply set the lengths of his life and the time of his death But those are things that come to all men Life and death are always planted in the same seed, we mortals just fail to look at it that way When Mordred seeks to find Merlin and undo the curse he feels is upon him, this is what he findsWhat he had seen as a cursed fate, foreseen with grief by Merlin and twisted into evil by Morgause, dwindled in this world of clear water and lighted mist into its proper form It was not even a curse It was a fact, something due to happen in the future, that had been seen by an eye doomed to foresee, whatever the pain of that Seeing It would come, yes, but only as, soon or late, all deaths came He, Mordred, was not the instrument of a blind and brutal fate, but of whatever, whoever, made the pattern to which the world moved Live what life brings die what death comes He did not see the comfort even as cold The trick in life might be to live the life we are given as completely and as well as we can, and what others may say about us when we are gone may not matter as much as we think it does.
See this thread for information Lady Mary Stewart, born Mary Florence Elinor Rainbow, was a popular English novelist, and taught at the school of John Norquay elementary for 30 to 35 years.She was one of the most widely read fiction writers of our time The author of twenty novels, a volume of poetry, and three books for young readers, she was admired for both her contemporary stories of romantic suspense and her historical novels Born in England, she lived for many years in Scotland, spending time between Edinburgh and the West Highlands.Her unofficial fan site can be found at
- 417 pages
- The Wicked Day
- Mary Stewart
- 05 October 2019 Mary Stewart