I don't remember anything about this, except what happens to Merlin, which may not even be part of this book.
1994 Jul 16
It's been at least thirty years since I read this. Since then I've read a great many retellings of the Arthurian legend, which I don't think would have come if not for this. Marion Zimmer Bradley didn't copy this at all, but Stewart, as far as I know, set the precedent for an ancient magic largely based on herbalism, and some sort of real precognition.
Off to a good start.
2008 Oct 25
I enjoyed this a great deal. I like the time she set the story, it is Arthurian not Medieval. It was hard to believe I'd ever read this before. I didn't remember a thing. Who knows, maybe I read The Last Enchantment and just thought I'd read The Crystal Cave. Fun, but not great literature. The focus on Merlin made for a nice twist. I like it that he has no powers other than an infrequent foretelling. This Merlin is a trained engineer, a learned man, who seems like a magician to the ignorant. That said, it falls away. I finished it less than forty-eight hours ago, and already it seems dim. Maybe I should try rereading Touch Not the Cat
. Maybe that would stick better.