The Shards of Excalibur is a five-book series telling the story of Ariane Forsythe, a teen from Regina, Saskatchewan, who discovers she is the heir of the Lady of the Lake of Arthurian legend. With the help of her unexpected sidekick, Wally Knight, she must discover all five pieces of King Arthur’s legendary sword Excalibur before Merlin, in his present-day guise as Rex Major, wealthy computer magnate, can do so…and launch a war to seize control of both Earth and his own world of Faerie.
The Shards of Excalibur
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Everyone knows the legends of King Arthur, the Round Table, and the powerful and noble wizard Merlin. But what if those so-called legends were real historical facts? And what if someone has carefully rewritten that history?
Ariane’s life is already pretty difficult when she starts to hear the singing – her mother’s disappeared, she’s trying to get used to living with her aunt after several foster homes, and she’s taking grief from the “in” girls at school. She’s dealing with strange dreams involving swords and knights and battles, and things seem to get weird whenever she touches water. And now an invisible someone, somewhere, is singing to her.
Before long, Ariane’s met the famed Lady of the Lake (in a journey UNDER the local lake), has acquired a nerdy sidekick, and is sent on a dangerous mission that pits her against otherworldly forces. Can she figure out what it all means, much less survive the challenge?
Reviewers liked the original version:
“Every so often … a writer is skilled enough to utilize the stories of King Arthur and Camelot to significant effect. Guy Gavriel Kay’s Fionavar Tapestry Trilogy is definitely on the list. So, too, is Song of the Sword, the impressive new YA novel from Regina writer Edward Willett … a taut, compelling narrative, well-drawn characters, and a keen sense of genuine peril and true wonder. It’s a powerful, fun, engaging read, and it’s the first of a series, so readers have much to look forward to.” – Quill & Quire, Sept. 2010
Having saved the first shard of the sword Excalibur from internet mogul Rex Major (aka Merlin), Ariane and Wally are on the lookout for the second. Wally’s worried that the power of the first Shard is already changing Ariane, giving her the strength to do both good and evil…and when she seriously hurts his bullying sister Flish, it seems he might be right.
Reviews of Twist of the Blade:
“The sequel to Song of the Sword (2014) improves on its foundation….Willett realistically explores the difficulties Ariane and Wally face and paints Rex Major in such a light that readers may be unsure as to whether he is a master manipulator or misunderstood hero…Engrossing and more nuanced than its predecessor.” – Kirkus Reviews
“A satisfying second instalment…Twist of the Blade offers an enticing sense of danger and excitement as Ariane pursues her mission, but the narrative doesn’t shy away from the story’s human elements…It’s refreshing to read a story in which the heroes and villains are not cut-and-dried, and readers can look forward to three more instalments in this genuinely entertaining myth-based series.” – Quill & Quire
The third Shard of the sword Excalibur is calling Ariane.
Ariane is on her own and on the run. Rex Major has swayed her erstwhile best friend Wally to his side. And when she finally hears the faint call of the third Shard of Excalibur, it’s on the other side of the world, in New Zealand! Wally, meanwhile, is discovering that life as Major’s “guest” isn’t all it promised, especially when he finds out Major’s plans for Ariane’s aunt. With Aunt Phyllis under threat, Ariane has no choice but to walk directly into Rex’s trap—and hope she can find a way to protect both the Shard and those she loves.
Seeking to recover the shards of King Arthur’s sword Excalibur before Rex Major (the ancient sorcerer Merlin in a modern-day guise), Ariane and Wally have traveled around the world, and their quest is not yet over.
Ariane’s magical powers as heir to the Lady of the Lake, combined with Wally’s clever thinking, have enabled them to hang on to two of the three shards they’ve located so far – but Rex Major still has one shard of his own, and will stop at nothing to claim all the pieces for himself, and use its power to rule Earth and invade the magical realm of Faerie. And now Major has his eyes on a big prize: Ariane’s mother, who went missing after she refused the power of the Lady of the Lake.
Thanks to Wally, Ariane knows her mother is alive – and that Rex Major is trying to find her. If he succeeds, Ariane fears she’ll have no choice but to surrender the two shards she and Wally possess, because she’ll do anything – and give up everything – to have her mother back with her again.
In Cave Beneath the Sea, Ariane and Wally race to the Caribbean as they try to find Ariane’s mother and the fourth shard of Excalibur before Major. As they struggle to stop Major, Ariane and Wally face desperate danger…and must make the most difficult decisions of their lives.
In the climactic fifth book of The Shards of Excalibur, Ariane, Wally, Flish, and Rex Major are on a collision course, converging on the resting place of the final piece of the sword: the hilt, long ago removed from its original hiding place by the descendants of King Arthur. When Wally uncovers its surprising location, far closer to hand than they’d ever guessed, it seems all Ariane and Wally have to do is claim it and reforge the sword to defeat Merlin forever.
Except…how, exactly, do you reforge a magical sword? Especially, how do you do it when the richest man in the world is on your trail and pouring all of his enormous resources into stopping you?
When the pieces of the sword are at last reunited, the results aren’t at all what Ariane and Wally imagined. With Excalibur whole again, the long-closed door into Faerie swings open wide. Who—and what—emerges from it may destroy everything and everyone Wally and Ariane have fought so hard to save—and allow Rex Major to snatch victory from the very jaws of defeat.
Fighting side by side, Ariane and Wally must draw on all their strength, courage, magic, and love to save the world…and there’s no guarantee it will be enough.