Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Kim Iverson Headlee relaunches King Aurthur's Sister in Washingon's Court

KING ARTHUR'S SISTER IN WASHINGTON'S COURT

by


Mark Twain as channeled by Kim Iverson Headlee

Official genre of book: Science Fiction - Fantasy crossover



KINDLE COVER BY Natasha Brown


WINNER 2016 IBPA Benjamin Franklin Gold Medal for Science Fiction & Fantasy.

Morgan le Fay, sixth-century Queen of Gore and the only major character not killed off by Mark Twain in A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, vows revenge upon the Yankee Hank Morgan. She casts a spell to take her to 1879 Connecticut so she may waylay Sir Boss before he can travel back in time to destroy her world. But the spell misses by 300 miles and 200 years, landing her in the Washington, D.C., of 2079, replete with flying limousines, hovering office buildings, virtual-reality television, and sundry other technological marvels.

Whatever is a time-displaced queen of magic and minions to do? Why, rebuild her kingdom, of course—two kingdoms, in fact: as Campaign Boss for the reelection of American President Malory Beckham Hinton, and as owner of the London Knights world-champion baseball franchise.

Written as though by the old master himself, King Arthur’s Sister in Washington’s Court by Mark Twain as channeled by Kim Iverson Headlee offers laughs, love, and a candid look at American society, popular culture, politics, baseball... and the human heart.



The wench’s smile looked indulgent, if a bit saddened. “Queen Morgan, may I offer an observation?”


“Pray, proceed, Darla, as I seem to have paid for it.”


“This is about a man—the dishy one you’re always coming in here with.”


“Brilliant. Yes, the dishy one. Dishy, and treacherous.” I took a long pull of bitters.


“Lor’ love ye, madame; but all men are treacherous! If you’re lucky, that’s all he is.”


I reflected, through another draught, upon this spot of rough wisdom. Of all the men I had ever known, biblically or not, in this century or any other, the only man I could not label as “treacherous” was Sir Galahad, and we all know what happened to him. For the couple of you who might not be privy to the story: in brief, Sir Galahad drank from the Holy Grail and fell down dead, reportedly because his soul was so pure that Our Lord God bustled him straightaway to heaven. The fact that Sir Galahad had always acted so damned self-righteous that his Grail-hunting companions had wearied of his holier-than-thou ways probably had nothing whatever to do with his demise. I said:


“I have treachery aplenty in my life, Darla.” Free agents, not-free agents, other players, managers, coaches…the list seemed endless. “I do not need more from Sandy Carter.”


“But you do need his love.”


I shook my head. “With love like that…”


She was not listening, but had looked toward the line of tall windows fronting the street, across which arched the words “nnI dleiftuO” and, in a revolving pattern of white, blue, and red tube-lights, “NEPO.” I would have taken umbrage at the offense—the server’s, not the fact that the words in the windows appeared backward to my vantage—but I had imbibed too much beer to care.


Darla said, “You need his love…and he needs yours. Look.”


Here's a review I wrote about this fabulous book when it had a different cover and had yet to win the
2016 IBPA Benjamin Franklin Gold Medal for Science Fiction & Fantasy:


What Kim Headlee has done here is just amazing. The story begins with Mark Twain talking from beyond his grave. He wants a sequel to A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court and he’s chosen Kim to deliver it.

And man does she!

There’s so much to love about this story.

First, let me say this book, even the ebook, is stuffed full of the most beautiful engravings. From the comments at the end of the book, I believe there is also an audio book and yes, even a screenplay floating about. If you purchase the audio, you should buy the ebook or book as well so you can have the engravings.

The ebook is only 2.99, as I write this, a bargain for the engravings alone, nevertheless the superb story that comes with it.

Next, let me list a few of hurdles that Headlee has to jump over:

First, she had to really get to know Mark Twain, and then get beyond her ‘unworthiness’ to write for him. It took her years to do this, but IMO time well spent.

Now, to the undercurrents of the story that could have caused her trouble:

This book relies on Time travel for the backbone of the story. Time Travel is always tricky, and normally leaves me dissatisfied due to implausibility issues. But I had no issues with Kim Headlee’s solution. While she didn't attempt to explain the technology and physics in detail, (being too busy playing baseball) I found it most plausible, so I was happy.


Next challenge: Handling romantic interludes like Twain. I was very pleased here. Kim matches what he would have done very nicely, although, to be honest, I enjoyed hers more than Twain’s. (I firmly believe women, or at least Kim, can write better romance than an old guy with wild white hair.) Still, the sections were more humorous than descriptive, much like Twain’s.

In addition, Twain had a habit of ‘thought wandering’ while he shared a story and Headlee does him justice in this matter as well.

Next, she has to make a believable transition for Queen Morgan to become a protagonist we wish to root for.

Honestly, I didn’t see how she would manage that, but she did. I loved Morgan from beginning to end. I especially loved the way she would talk to the reader throughout the book, confessing the truth and sharing details. It was as if I were her BFF.


I read this in a single setting, despite having a great deal to do, because frankly, I could not put the book down. I think Morgan may have enchanted me…

5 Stars


KINDLE VERSION
Jennifer Doneske & Tom Doneske developed the interior illustrations. Jennifer also developed the papercover and hardcover dust jacket.

PAPERBACK VERSION

HARDCOVER VERSION



Kim Headlee lives on a farm in southwestern Virginia with her family, cats, goats, Great Pyrenees goat guards, and assorted wildlife. People and creatures come and go, but the cave and the 250-year-old house ruins—the latter having been occupied as recently as the mid-twentieth century—seem to be sticking around for a while yet. She has been an award-winning novelist since 1999 (Dawnflight first edition, Sonnet Books, Simon & Schuster) and has been studying the Arthurian Legends for nigh on half a century.




5 comments:

  1. Thank you very much, {{{Liza}}} for hosting KASIWC on your blog again, and for all the shares!
    Kim Headlee
    Stories make us greater.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Since you liked my prior review so much, I naturally had to stuff it in this blog as well. It's a fabulous book and you should be proud. I'm sure Mark Twain is proud of you too.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I remember you reviewing this book before. If you love it, it must be fabulous! :) All the best Kim!

    ReplyDelete
  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete

Authors love to get comments. It's candy to our souls.
Please take the time to leave one.

After 3 days, comments require moderation.