Best King Arthur books?

I loved the BBC series and it made wonder what books I can read :)


T.H. White's *The Once and Future King* is considered a classic Arthurian book.


I second this. A beautiful work! If you can find any of the Arthurian books that Howard Pyle illustrated, you are in for a treat. They were gorgeous.


This is one of my favorite books. So good!


I just reread it. It's a great value on audiobook! It's so poignant and beautiful.


I was going to suggest this as well. It's a wonderful classic.


This. I am pretty strict about what I consider "Arthurian" and resisted reading this for decades. When I finally read it, I realized it was a beautiful retelling of the story. T.H. White nailed it, especially the end.


Oh boy do I have a list for you. Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley - epic, sweeping narrative from the POV of Morgan le Fay. Very woman-centric. The Crystal Cave series by Mary Stewart - arthurian legend and related tales from Merlin's POV. Very well written with lovely mystical vibes. Sword Stone Table - short fiction anthology of fresh and diverse takes on Arthuriana. For some older sources: The Mabinogion - old collection of welsh tales including some original Arthur stories from before he was co-opted by the Plantagenets for English propaganda. The Romance of Tristran by Beroul - a great story that collides with the world of Arthur that is my absolute favorite in the canon. The Lais of Marie de France - a collection of poetic stories, some of which take place in the court of King Arthur, which I absolutely adored. I will say that I didn't love le morte d'Arthur. If you're obsessed with Arthurian legend you should read it, but it can be repetitive at times. The sections about Lancelot are the most interesting by far.


I am constantly raving about the Mary Stewart books and find very few people familiar with them. Hands down my favorite telling of the legend. I like that much of the “magic” is actually science or subtle deception, with just a touch of the supernatural. I think if done right they could be turned into a tv series that would rival GOT. (And have a better ending lol)


I second the Crystal Cave series. Mary Stewart is great. Also to add: The Fionavar Tapestry series by Guy Gavriel Kay


Bernard Cromwell. -- The Winter King Trilogy


I also really enjoyed this take on Arthur.


Came in here just to suggest that. So good. There's a TV series coming up soon, too.


I totally forgot about that thanks for reminding me! Has it been cast yet?


Been filmed, believe in post-production for release sometime this year.


No way! I read those books as a teen, I´m so hyped now!


I was definitely going to suggest this. *Bernard Cornwell.


I enjoyed this seemingly historically-realistic take on Arthur a lot.


I just finished Le Morte D'Arthur by Thomas Malory and can highly recommend it. While there's no definitive canon of Arthurian legend because it's all disparate storytellers etc., Malory's version is as close as you get because it's what a ton of later stuff was based on. The original is in Middle English so if you don't want to decipher that you'll want one of the various translations. I found the Oxford World's Classics version quite good because it's less a translation and more a spelling update so you can get the best of both worlds with extensive and high quality annotations. It is slightly abridged, but with all the random repeating sections and tangents that's not really a loss, imo, especially since they note what they cut out each time.


That's the one I was going to mention, plus the Chretien de Troyes' Yvain, the Knight of the Lion and Lancelot, the Knight of the Cart Gawain and the Green Knight is also quite good (and it was edited by Tolkien, that's a plus!)


Add to these recommendations Sir Gawain and the Green Knight


He is a side character(bonkers I know) but The Fionavar Tapestry


The Camolud Chronicles by Jack Whyte.


This is an interesting take on the story. However, I found his writing painful.


The Acts of King Arthur and His Noble Knights by John Steinbeck (yes, that John Steinbeck)


This is probably the best version of King Arthur for modern readers. Steinbeck retains the feeling of the original but his depiction of the characters are insightful and amazing, and he takes no liberties with the source.


The Gerard Morris series is written for children, but it’s FIRE. Starts with The Squire’s Tale (not related at all to the movie).


Whoa I forgot about those! I was obsessed as a kid


Oh, Idylls of the King - Alfred Lord Tennyson


Howard Pyle's Arthurian books. Written for children, but beautiful and pretty comprehensive .


Mercedes Lackey's Gwenhwyfar: The White Spirit is a good twist on the tale told from a women's perspective. I liked it better than Mists of avalon.


I really enjoyed The Dragon and the Unicorn series by A.A. Attanasio. It's a bit different.


I’m reading Half Sick of Shadows now and I quite like it. Told from Elaine, Lady of Shalott’s point of view.


I just finished this one. Really liked it! Also recommend


Jack Whyte's "The Skystone" and subsequent books in the series wove the Arthur tale into a historical account and generational stories regarding the founding of Britain.


Rosemary Sutcliff's renditions are iconic, though they're for a young audience.


Legendborn there are two books so far and a third do out at the end of the year.


For a different twist on it, King Arthur and her knights by Km shea is a really good series.


See my [Knights/King Arthur](https://www.reddit.com/r/booklists/comments/12sulm0/knightsking_arthur/) list of resources, Reddit recommendation threads, and books (two posts).


Mage, the Hero Discovered by Matt Wagner. This is a graphic novel and set in modern times, but is one of my favorite Arthurian reads!


Stephen Lawhead's Pendragon Cycle


The Death of King Arthur/Sir Gawaine and the Green Knight, both by Simon Armitage