IN PERILOUS TIMES LIKE THESE, THE REALM DOESN’T JUST NEED A HERO.
IT NEEDS A KNIGHT IN SHINING ARMOUR.
Sir Kay and his fellow knights awake from their mythical slumber whenever Britain has need of them; they fought at Agincourt and at the Somme. But in these perilous modern times, the realm is more divided than ever, a dragon has been seen for the first time in centuries, and Kay is not the only ancient and terrible thing to come crawling up out of the ground . . .
Perilous Times is a fiercely entertaining contemporary take on the myths of Camelot, which asks: what happens when the Knights of the Round Table return to fix the problems of the modern world?
This debut is perfect for fans of Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman and Ben Aaronovitch.
Hi and welcome to my review of Perilous Times!
I was drawn to Perilous Times because of its cover and its magnificent premise. I have always loved the Arthurian legends and the premise of the Knights of the Round Table walking around modern-day Britain? I just had to be there!
Now, the premise is fab, but more importantly, so is the execution. Sir Kay wakes up and all he knows is: there must be peril and he has been called forth to help. When you’ve been buried in mud for God knows how long and you wake up, the times aren’t just perilous, they’re very confusing, and I well and truly had a ball seeing Kay trying to find his feet in this strange new world.
I loved the adventure that you’d expect from any kind of Arthurian legend inspired tale, and all the references with a twist, like the Saxons, a US corporation, including a heavily armed security detail. Or Lancelot, who is not at all what you would expect. As a matter of fact, neither is Arthur. And don’t even get me started on Merlin!
I also thoroughly enjoyed the humour. The timing is everything. You’re in this very serious situation and then it comes to light that Merlin predicted the egg whisk. Or Lancelot is crossing the Mersey listening to the Bee Gees. And you’re like what the??? These types of things pulled me out of the story, because they made me do a double take, and drew me in more, all at the same time. I chuckled and snorted so many times.
A bit of an unexpected cherry on top of this fantastic sundae was the fact that Perilous Times is set in a near and rather dystopian future. Mankind has basically ruined the world, for instance birds have become quite rare, and Kay falls in with a group of environmental terrorists. Consequently, there is an environmental and political angle to the story as well. Said ecoterrorists are a tough bunch of women, so there is definitely a feminist angle too. A world in peril might benefit from a knight in shining armour, but a feisty woman with a sword or a staff isn’t half bad either.
I wasn’t able to read Perilous Times in one sitting, not even a few sittings, it’s a bit too big for that, and life kept getting in the way. However, binging a book is not the only way you know you love it: loving a book is also eagerness to dive back in and continue your journey, enjoying cracking it open again and picking up where you left off. And that was definitely me with Perilous Times.
I had a great time with Perilous Times. It’s so smart and intricate and thought-provoking, yet also highly entertaining. It’s such an accomplished debut I’m having a hard time believing it is in fact a debut. If you enjoy urban fantasy adventure stories with a bit of a quest involved, this will be one you’ll love. Recommended.
Perilous Times will be out in digital formats and audiobook on 23 May and hardcover on 25 May. The paperback will follow next year
Massive thanks to Nazia and Orbit Books for the gorgeous Pendragon Pink proof! All opinions are my own.