ARC Review: Once & Future

“That’s what resistance looks like, Merlin. It’s not one glorious, shining victory. It’s a torch that you keep burning, no matter what.”

Rating: 4/5 stars
Format: Physical copy
Release Date: March 26, 2019

Thank you to Hachette Book Group  for sending me a review copy!


36233085I’ve been chased my whole life. As a fugitive refugee in the territory controlled by the tyrannical Mercer corporation, I’ve always had to hide who I am. Until I found Excalibur.

Now I’m done hiding.

My name is Ari Helix. I have a magic sword, a cranky wizard, and a revolution to start.

When Ari crash-lands on Old Earth and pulls a magic sword from its ancient resting place, she is revealed to be the newest reincarnation of King Arthur. Then she meets Merlin, who has aged backward over the centuries into a teenager, and together they must break the curse that keeps Arthur coming back. Their quest? Defeat the cruel, oppressive government and bring peace and equality to all humankind.

No pressure.

The Verdict

A Gender-bent King Arthur reimagining set in space with a cast full of LGBT+ rep, what more could we possibly need in 2019?

Not a damn thing.

When I received an e-mail from the publisher asking if I would be interested in a receiving a copy of this book the screech I let out would have been loud enough to send my neighbors into a panic that there was a serial killer in my house. But alas, no one was home so no need for anyone to lose their minds EXCEPT ME, because King Arthur has always been one of my favorite stories, and now we are getting a story where King Arthur is a GIRL?! Hell yeah.

But here’s the thing, I read my ARC of this back in November-ish with my bb Sol, and since then I saw a picture of the book posted by the author with about 1,001 tabs of all the changes that were made since the ARC’s went out. So, I’m planning on rereading this at some point to find out all of the changes that were made, and I’m excited! Because oooooof, did I struggle in the beginning of this book. The first 75 pages were WILD. Everything happened so fast while you were still trying to figure out who was who, and I’m not going to lie it was rough.  It really just started off so messy but by the end it all tied together pretty well once the pacing slowed down.

By the middle of the story all the rushing around in the beginning started to settle down and you could finally, somewhat, kind of understand the direction the story was going in. Don’t get me wrong though, it still takes a lot of dramatic twists, but that was when I started to have fun reading this as well as being more invested in the characters. Come the end of this book I was so invested in all of the characters and their wellbeing, plot lines, and what the hell is going to happen next.

If you’re looking for a book with lots and lots and LOTS of amazing LGBT+ rep, then look no further, because this is it, my friends. This has one of the most amazing, fun, and diverse group of characters I’ve ever read. Plus, this is an ownvoices book so it honestly doesn’t get more perfect than this! It all felt so natural to the story and UGH I just loved it so much. This book also talks about oppression and challenging the system which can be tied into today’s society in so many ways.

“And you were the thing Mercer feared most,”  Gwen said, her words reaching across the rather notable distance between them.  “A girl they couldn’t control, who wouldn’t stop talking.  That’s the scariest damn thing in the universe.”

All in all, I’m so glad I was able to read this book with one of my very best friends here in the book community and that I was able to get to read a book with such diverse characters. They are the shining stars of this book who deserve all the world and then some.

Until next time,



9 thoughts on “ARC Review: Once & Future

  1. This one is on my bookcase waiting to be picked up (my bookshop received it early and thoughtfully passed it onto me 😀 ) like you the idea just screams HELL YES at me and I CANNOT WAIT to read it as soon as I finish my bookclub book


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