BookHound
Reviews and Recommendations by Mel Odom, Professional Writer

AVALON HIGH: THE MERLIN PROPHECY: CORONATION SERIES BOOK 1 by Meg Cabot and Jinky Coronado

Meg Cabot is a high profile author whose books have gone on to become movies and television shows. Her series include The Mediator, 1-800-Where-R-You (which became the television show, MISSING), The Princess Diaries (which became movies of the same name), and others as well as many stand-alone books of romance and humor.

Avalon High was originally a stand-alone title but was picked by TokyoPop to become a 3-volume graphic novel series. The book is also in development with Disney to become a live-action film.

The story is very familiar, culled from the Arthurian mythos and brought into the high school arena. Arthur is now known as Will, and he quickly becomes the boyfriend of Elle, who is basically the character of the Lady of Shalott. All of the other Arthurian legends are represented as well: Merlin, Lancelot, Guinevere, Modred, and Morgan Le Fey.

Jinky Coronado’s black and white drawings are a pleasure to view and up the frenzied pace of the book. Coronado blends the pure manga stylings with current, popular comic book art that creates an interesting hybrid on the pages. The sequential action draws the eye naturally. Several of the panels kept drawing my attention back to them because they were so well done.

Cabot’s story is pretty straightforward and simple. King Arthur has been reborn once more, but that means his enemies have also been reborn. The main problem: according to Mr. Morton (Elle’s history teacher and very probably Merlin the wizard), Will Wagner must recognize and accept himself as the rebirth of Arthur. That’s not going to be an easy feat because Will is certain he knows who he is. And he has to do it within a few weeks or the world will be destroyed.

The impending destruction of the world is such an easy thing to lay on teenagers! But Elle is quickly off and running as she tries to deal with being the new girl in school, being Will’s girlfriend, and dealing with the enemies they have separately as well as together. Morgan in particular doesn’t care for Elle.

Unfortunately, the first third of the graphic novel is more or less a summary of things that have gone on before. This choice really impedes the story for a while, and it takes up so many pages that by the time the tale gets underway, it’s practically over. Still, the cliffhanger ending should bring readers back around for a do-over.

I’m looking forward to reading the other two volumes in the series, as well as handing it off to friends of mine who are heavily into graphic novels. But now I have to go back and read the book as well, because I somehow missed that one. And I’m going to be interested in the upcoming movie as well.

If you want light, easy entertainment with some extended value (or at least something you can share with other and talk about quickly), Cabot’s new manga series is a good choice. It’s not as far out there as some of the Japanese manga, and it’s a great size to throw in a backpack or back pocket for on-the-road reading.

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2 Responses to “AVALON HIGH: THE MERLIN PROPHECY: CORONATION SERIES BOOK 1 by Meg Cabot and Jinky Coronado”

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  2. I was just reading through your summary of Avalon High: The Merlin Prophacy and noticed you made a slight mistake. Elle is not the Lady of Shallot, she is The Lady of the Lake, Arthurs saviour, it was she who gave him the sword that he took down Mordred with. She rarely shows up in the mythical laws.
    Mordred/Morgan believed her to be the Lady of Shalott, and that is where he made his biggest mistake, because he thought when he split up Will and Jen, that Elle would disappear because she was the LOS, but she couldn’t leave Will’s side because she was infact the Lady of the Lake.


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