Widely considered the definitive modern retelling of the medieval saga of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table, T.H. White’s collection of Arthurian tales brings 20th-century insight to the rise and fall of the mythical kingdom of Camelot. Beginning with the legend of “The Sword in the Stone,” White offers a comical yet deeply sad portrayal of Arthur’s life, from his childhood training with the wizard Merlyn all the way through the morning of his tragic final battle. The narrative serves as a post-World War II allegory for the ways in which power and violence shape both individuals and societies. White’s work is populated by the likes of such famous literary figures as Robin Hood, Morgan le Fay and, of course, Lancelot and Guenever, whose illicit love affair provides the axis on which the epic turns. —Megan McCluskey

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