Twilight of Avalon
A Novel of Trystan & Isolde
Ancient grudges, old wounds, and the quest for power rule in the newly widowed Queen Isolde's court. Hardly a generation after the downfall of Camelot, Isolde grieves for her slain husband, King Constantine, a man she secretly knows to have been murdered by the scheming Lord Marche -- the man who has just assumed his title as High King. Though her skills as a healer are renowned throughout the kingdom, in the wake of Con's death, accusations of witchcraft and sorcery threaten her freedom and her ability to bring Marche to justice. Burdened by their suspicion and her own grief, Isolde must conquer the court's distrust and superstition to protect her throne and the future of Britain.
One of her few allies is Trystan, a prisoner with a lonely and troubled past. Neither Saxon nor Briton, he is unmoved by the political scheming, rumors, and accusations swirling around the fair queen. Together they escape, and as their companionship turns from friendship to love, they must find a way to prove what they know to be true -- that Marche's deceptions threaten not only their lives but the sovereignty of the British kingdom.
In Twilight of Avalon, Anna Elliott returns to the roots of the legend of Trystan and Isolde to shape a very different story -- one based in the earliest written versions of the Arthurian tales -- a captivating epic brimming with historic authenticity, sweeping romance, and the powerful magic of legend.
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Reading Group Guide
Questions for Discussion
1. In the prologue Morgan says, “If a soul lives with each mention of its name, I will be forever young and beautiful as the Morgan in tales” (page 5). How can storytelling keep a person alive?
2. Throughout the novel various men offer Isolde protection. What protection can a man offer her physically? Politically? Do you think she needs a man to protect her?
3. The story takes place during the early years of Christianity in Europe. How did this affect the action of the story? Where do you think Isolde stands in terms of religious beliefs? How do you think the emerging Christianity contributed to the fear that she was a witch?
4. From the moment Con dies all of the men begin treating Isolde differently. Does her role as queen offer her any protection? At what times does her life seem to have worth? When does she seem disposable?
5. The phrase “The stars will still shine tomorrow, whatever happens to me here” is repeated throughout the story. How di see more