The Bones of Avalon

Phil Rickman

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The Bones of Avalon

The Bones of Avalon Religious strife Glastonbury legends the bones of King Arthur and the curse of the Tudorsn Renaissance man John Dee help the young Queen Elizabeth to avoid it It is Elizabeth Tudor has been on

  • Title: The Bones of Avalon
  • Author: Phil Rickman
  • ISBN: 9781848872714
  • Page: 376
  • Format: Paperback
  • Religious strife, Glastonbury legends, the bones of King Arthur and the curse of the Tudorsn Renaissance man John Dee help the young Queen Elizabeth to avoid it It is 1560 Elizabeth Tudor has been on the throne for a year, the date for her coronation having been chosen by her astrologer, Dr John Dee, at just 32 already famous throughout Europe as a mathematician andReligious strife, Glastonbury legends, the bones of King Arthur and the curse of the Tudorsn Renaissance man John Dee help the young Queen Elizabeth to avoid it It is 1560 Elizabeth Tudor has been on the throne for a year, the date for her coronation having been chosen by her astrologer, Dr John Dee, at just 32 already famous throughout Europe as a mathematician and expert in the hidden arts But neither Elizabeth nor Dee feel entirely secure Both have known imprisonment for political reasons The Queen is unpopular with both Roman Catholics and the new breed of puritanical protestant Dee is regarded with suspicion in an era where the dividing line between science and sorcery is, at best, indistinct And the assignment he s been given by the Queen s chief minister, Sir William Cecil, will blur it further ride to the ruins of Glastonbury Abbey, bring back King Arthur s bones The mission takes the mild, bookish Dee to the tangled roots of English magic and the Arthurian legacy so important to the Tudors Into unexpected violence, spiritual darkness, the breathless stirring of first loved the cold heart of a complex plot against Elizabeth With him is his friend and former student, Robert Dudley, a risk taker, a wild cardd possibly the Queen s secret lover Dee is Elizabethan England s forgotten hero A man for whom this world even the rapidly expanding world of the Renaissance was never enough.

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      Published :2018-07-01T17:25:47+00:00

    One thought on “The Bones of Avalon

    1. Judith Arnopp on said:

      I had never heard of Phil Rickman before I stumbled, quite accidentally, upon this book. As a writer and historian myself, I am a harsh critic and have grown weary of predictable, run of the mill historical novels. Most are unconvincing both in characterisation and plot and when I picked up The Bones of Avalon I did not expect it to be any different. But I was wrong; Phil had me at the first line.The Bones of Avalon is set in the 1560’s; a time of religious uncertainty, Popish plot and counter [...]

    2. Gary on said:

      This historical novel by an author I had not previously heard of brings together a lot of my interests and that alone made it quite compelling for me : King Arthur and Avalon, Elizabeth I, , parapsychology and the spirit world and Kabala.England reeling from the reign of terror of Bloody Mary in her blustering efforts to force the Roman Catholic faith back on England.The new Queen Elizabeth I aims for a more tolerant course but is beset by troubles. she sends her astrologer and doctor of psychic [...]

    3. Penny on said:

      I'm so divided over this book. Let's get one thing straight, I didn't like it. I'm not sure whether it has something to do with my high expectations of a novel entitled 'The Bones of Avalon', or if it was simply boring.It is well-written in so many ways, language, research, sentences that flow smoothly etc etc, which is why it gets two stars rather than one, but it just didn't ignite much of a spark. It seemed to take half the book to set up the story, about 40 pages of excitement (possibly, I h [...]

    4. Annet on said:

      This is a wondrous story, a mix of history and fantasy and the supernatural. It features Elisabeth I, the Royal astrologer John Dee, Robert Dudley, horseman of the queen and supposedly Elizabeth's lover, but also king Arthur, Morgan LeFay, Avalon, the Zodiac sign, Nostradamusd more. Story had its ups & downs, but overall, very good. Enjoyed it.

    5. Lisa on said:

      Dr John Dee is astrologer to Queen Elizabeth I and, in most people’s eyes, a conjuror. Not because of his magical ability (as he has none) but because…well, mostly because the general population back then wasn’t exactly known for its reasonability, and seemed to really enjoy watching people get executed (and accusing someone of witchcraft virtually guaranteed getting them killed). Menaced by apparent portents of doom, Queen Liz sends Dr Dee on a secret mission to help protect her - recover [...]

    6. Carol Douglas on said:

      I enjoy reading about the Tudors and love the Arthurian legends. This book was a natural for me, though it had more about the former than the latter.The protagonist is the astrologer John Dee, who many believed to be a conjurer. In this book, he's an intelligent searcher who wishes he could communicate with beings in another world, but can't. As in many books, the protagonist journeys with a friend, in this case Robert Dudley, who was rumored to be a lover of Queen Elizabeth.Elizabeth appears br [...]

    7. Penny Shales on said:

      This is fiction set round the real life figure of John Dee, alchemist, perhaps conjurer, astrologer to Elizabeth I. The Elizabethan obsession with magic and superstition is vividly portrayed as Dee struggles to fullfil a brief from Cecil to find the bones of King Arthur in Glastonbury. There is a catholic plot and the smell of burning hangs over the entire book. England is still reeling from the bloody reign of Mary Tudor while Dee himself is haunted by dreams of being burned at the stake - a fa [...]

    8. Kara on said:

      Imagine a season of True Detective set in early Elizabethan England. It’s well written and well researched and an excellent presentation of a slice of life, but good lord it leaves you with little faith in humanity. I liked how it showed where everyone was coming from having just survived Henry VIII and Mary I (going so far as to hint the whole country may have had PTSD after those two) and how it showed the people known for being well established members of Elizabethan life – Dr. Dee, Walsi [...]

    9. Debra on said:

      As always, Rickman gives us a winner with a compelling plot, characters you care about (and some you hate), suspense and mystery, and great historical fiction.My only complaint is there were a lot of typos in this edition. Also, nine times out of ten, Henry VIII was referred to as King Harry. I don't know if this was a known nickname for him back in the day, but I could find no mention of it on the internet. Also, I had to brush up on my knowledge of England's kings and queens, and Mary Queen of [...]

    10. Katherine Coble on said:

      This is what leisure reading was made for. A book like this, with real characters, a solid mystery and actual contemplation of philosophy. Please read it. I dont give out five star ratings like candy; I am very exacting about my reading material. This book meets all the criteria I have foe "excellent read" status, and then some.

    11. Dieleserin on said:

      Dr. John Dee – Wissenschaftler und vertrauter von Elizabeth I. – wird an einem regnerischen Morgen zu einem mysteriösen Vorfall gerufen. Passanten haben am Ufer der Themse einen Sarg gefunden, der eine verkrüppelte, aus Wachs gefertigte, Leiche enthält. Es wird vermutet, dass es sich dabei um eine Anspielung auf die Königin handelt – ein böses Omen.Wenig später wird Dee damit beauftragt mit seinem langjährigen Freund und Schüler Robert Dudley nach Glastonbury aufzubrechen, um die G [...]

    12. Ruth on said:

      c2010. I agree with the Daily Mail's comments that "Its high time we praised Phil Rickman". Mr Rickman is able to blend magic and mystery into the world without any seeming effort and yet his protagonist manages to calmly investigate these on goings with a scientific air. I think this is the first novel to feature Dr Dee where I actually quite liked him! I like the author's use of dialogue to move the story along and to impart information without feeling bombarded with facts or that it is contri [...]

    13. Linda on said:

      There are few Elizabethan figures more infamous and mysterious than John Dee, the Virgin Queen's personal astrologer. Author Phil Rickman imagines a young John Dee, and sends him to Glastonbury, reputed resting place of King Arthur, on a secret quest. Rickman ups the ante by making Dee's cohort none other than Robert Dudley, the queen's favorite suitor. It isn't long before a kidnapping, a gruesome murder, and a blossoming love affair make this quest a perilous one. Any novel set among the ruins [...]

    14. Malla on said:

      This book had all the right ingredients for an excellent historical thriller - but my feeling is that the author simply didn't deliver what was to hand. Writers use padding when they either don't have enough good ideas to keep the story going or when publishers are forcing them to stretch a perfectly good 70,000 words to 120,000. At least that's what this book felt like to me. I believe the author's heavy padding and slow pace killed what could have been a superb story. There was some beautiful [...]

    15. Jamie Collins on said:

      An enjoyable historical mystery featuring Dr. John Dee, who was a scientist, mathematician, astrologer and occultist of the Tudor age, when that list of disciplines was entirely reconcilable. He was consulted by Queen Elizabeth I and she has a nice cameo in the book.This is very well written, although the slow pace that I love in Rickman’s Merrily Watkins novels didn’t work quite as well for me here. I liked the pseudo-Elizabethan speech patterns, which are not accurate (for reasons of clari [...]

    16. Julia Phillips on said:

      Phil Rickman is one of my favourite authors - I particularly like his series about Merrily Watkins, the Christian Deliverance Minister (Diocesan Exorcist) with the pagan daughter. Rickman writes about liminal places with an insight and sensitivity rarely seen.The Bones of Avalon features one of England's most sacred places - whether Christian or pagan - and the central character is the fascinating Dr John Dee, Elizabethan mathematician, astrologer, scientist and magus. Also in a leading role is [...]

    17. Louise Miller on said:

      An intriguing, well researched book.The Queen’s ‘sorcerer’, her astrology, Dr John Dee is sent on a special mission. Accompanied by Sir Robert Dudley, a favourite of the Queen’s, and believed to be her lover, Dr Dee travels to Glastonbury to unravel the mysteries of the lost bones of King Arthur. It is well written and a different sort of mystery to the thriller novels that usually line the shelves. Rickman has a fluid writing style and throws in some excellently written one liners that [...]

    18. Albert on said:

      Another well written story set during the early reign of Queen Elizabeth. With the people of England torn between the Church of England and the Papal Church, comes the central character of John Dee, known throughout history as the Queen's Conjurer. A man of high education and a strong faith in the mystic, I first came across this true historical character in S J Parris' Prophecy. In The Bones of Avalon a much younger John Dee must navigate his way through superstition, murder and greed to uneart [...]

    19. Judy King on said:

      Now I need to do some research's been so long since I've delved into anything that even borders on Merlin and Arthur (this just overlaps a tad) that now I'm wondering if the legends promoted here are/were commonWas Joseph of Arimetia really Jesus' uncle -- wasn't he the one who provided the grave? Was it really believed that Jesus had been in Wales/England as a child? Were the contents of English abbeys sent to France for safekeeping? Did the law after Henry VIII fine countrymen for NOT attendin [...]

    20. Karen on said:

      An excellent historical mystery, this book tells of the search for the bones of King Arthur.Queen Elizabeth I has been on the throne for a year and wants the bones of King Arthur (who she believes is her ancestor) to be found and brought to London where they will be re-buried with deserving ceremony. A young Dr John Dee and his friend Lord Robert Dudley are sent to Glastonbury to find them. Plot twists that include witchcraft and religion kept me reading, and guessing, right to the last page. Hi [...]

    21. Maylin on said:

      I enjoyed this at least as much as the Merrily Watkins books. Phil Rickman evokes place and the power of the land on people better than I have ever read elsewhere. It was enhanced for me because having lived in the area for 20 years I was familiar with all the places.It struck me how this authentic rendition of a Tudor Glastonbury bears so much resemblance to the town today! Still full of weirdos (in the nicest possible sense).The main characters were sympathetically drawn and easy to empathise [...]

    22. JackieB on said:

      Enjoyable historical mystery with lots of twists and turns and a hint of the supernatural thrown in. If I'm totally honest I think I slightly prefer Phil Rickman's Merrily Watson series but that may just be because I'm familiar with them and I really like the main characters in them. This is still a good enjoyable book though. If he decides to do any more historical books based on this one I'd definitely read them.

    23. Elijay on said:

      I love Phil Rickman for the Merrily Watkins stories. Snugglying up reading the ghost mysteries on a wintry evening is the best way to sepnd those long cold nights. However I started reading Rickman when I came across The Chalice, which I loved for his portrayal of life and characters in Glastonbury. In this novel he does even better, by exploring ledgends and deplicting life Totain the era of Queen Elizabeth I. Totally amazing!

    24. Theresa Crater on said:

      Man, those Brits really know how to write English, regardless that Rushdie says the whole world owns the langauge nowadays. A historical, metaphysical thriller. John Dee is called to Glastonbury to find the bones of Arthur. Becomes a target and a dupe. Takes a little psychedelic adventure and falls in love. So did I.

    25. Karen on said:

      Really enjoyed this although it did flag a little in the middle before picking up again towards the end. I liked the twist towards the end although I do think it was made a little to obvious that Nel hadn't killed anybody, that she was a victim of intolerance.

    26. Bibliophile on said:

      I cannot for the life of me give this a fair review. It was one of those audiobooks that put me right to sleep, meaning it deserves five stars for curing insomnia alone. Of course that also means that I wasn't exactly sure what was going on, and I have a feeling it was kinda slow, but basically it was about John Dee (yes THE John Dee) looking for King Arthur's bones in Glastonbury, where he comes across fresher, murdered, corpses. Fun! Sir Robert Dudley acts as his side kick, although he's down [...]

    27. Koit on said:

      I am appalled by this book. Appalled It is disheartening to think that the author considers the sentence structure he adopted a good idea, despite abandoning a more Elizabethan speech. In short, large portions of the text seem to try and follow 16th century English but in reality make the book unreadable and un-followable. I am also uncertain whether the English of that time really was so used to missing viral components of sentences but oh wellThat said, the story is actually good and a lot bet [...]

    28. Themistokeles on said:

      Inhalt: Dr. John Dee, in England bekannt als Zauberer und Hofastrologe der Königin Elisabeth, wird im Auftrag eben dieser nach Glastonbury geschickt, denn dort soll einst das legendäre Avalon gewesen sein. Der Grund seines Auftrags liegt darin begründet, dass die König unbedingt die Gebeine ihres vermeintlichen Ahnherren Artus aus Glastonbury, nach London bringen möchte, denn einst sollen dort dessen Gebeine gefunden worden sein und eine Prophezeihung, die mit diesen in Zusammenhang steht, [...]

    29. M.G. Mason on said:

      Dr John Dee is a (real life) lawyer in Tudor England - the early years of the reign of Elizabeth I to be precise - and he likes to dabble in the occult and study apparent relics. He is highly sceptical of most of the artefacts that come across his path so when he is approached by an envoy of the Queen on a most unusual matter, he is intrigued but not really surprised that she is seeking a mystical object. In real life he was an occultist, astronomer, astrologer and alchemist who received patrona [...]

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