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???Ancestors of Avalon??? is just what the title promises, an early episode in the story that culminates in the classic ???The Mists of Avalon.??? It is the sequel to ???Fall of Atlantis,??? an early story by Marion Zimmer Bradley (written before ???Mists??? although published afterward).
The priests and acolytes of the Atlantean temples of light must flee once again as another group of Atlantic islands is destroyed by earthquakes and volcanos (there is some evil deity at work here, but his role was unclear to me, perhaps because I didn???t read ???Fall???). Tiriki and Micail (wife and husband, priestess and priest, temple guardians) are separated in their flight. Both of their ships reach Britain???s south shore but make landfall at different locations, and each believes the other is dead. Tirike becomes a leader among the people of the marsh, who venerate the Great Goddess and guard her sacred mound and spirit gate that will become the Isle of Avalon. Micail falls in with a conquest-minded group of Atlantean males who want to use his magic powers to, well, get more power. He oversees the raising of Stonehenge. Will he find Tirike? Will realize the error of his ways?
I???m not sure why I made this selection; I read ???Mists??? but have had little interest in the other prequels. Perhaps some atavistic interest in Atlantis kicked in. It???s not a great book; the characters are so shallow and interchangeable that I gave up trying to tell most of them apart. However, there are some lovely lines of poetry embedded in a fast-paced story that is surprisingly enjoyable, and I was pulled in by Rosalyn Landor???s hypnotic narration. I totally agree with the reviewer who recommended re-recording ???Mists??? with Landor as narrator, she???s great.
P.S. The ???chronological??? sequence (as opposed to publication order) of the Avalon story so far is: Fall of Atlantis; Ancestors of Avalon; Sword of Avalon; Ravens of Avalon; The Forest House; Lady of Avalon; Priestess of Avalon; Mists of Avalon
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