Our Man on Earth (The Swithen Book 1) by Scott Telek ~Review~

Our Man On Earth by Scott Telek is the first book in The Swithen Series. This series details the origin of Merlin, the famous wizard from Arthurian Legend. There are many myths and legends about this sorcerer, but the author tells this fictional tale based on some early manuscripts. The story begins with demons wanting one of their own on Earth, just like God has sent Jesus Christ. The demons terrorize a family and one woman named Meylinde gets pregnant by one of the demons. She does her best to be rid of the demons and endures so many hardships but still gives birth to Merlin. Merlin proves to be an advanced child with powers. He knows from birth that he is destined to have his name go down in history.

I love Arthurian Legend. I love all the myths, legends, modern re-imaginations, and even studied it in college. I was so excited to read this book. Unfortunately, this book just didn’t seem to be executed that well. I love that the author used early manuscripts as inspiration for this fictional tale. During the 13th century, there is a rise in the concept of chivalry and devout religious influences. The author claims that this is the “real” origin story. The only problem is the manuscript that this fictional tale is derived from took the inspiration of Merlin from Myrddin Wyllt and Emrys. (I can hear all the BBC Merlin show fans screaming with joy as I write this.) So this isn’t the real Merlin story, because this isn’t even the first account of Merlin.

Ok, now that I got that off my chest—to the positive aspects of the book. The description is great. The author goes into great depth with description of the characters, how they look and where they live. There are a few issues with past and present tense. There are a couple of times where the narration mentions our present time period (2019) but the narration takes place during the 1200s. That really took me out of the story. The dialogue is also very modern. It felt as if the characters were talking as if they lived in modern-day America, not the 13th century. However, the author did a great job of bringing the horror of the demon possession to the story.

My last comment about the book is that it is just a retelling. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE retellings and reimaginings. However, there is nothing new that was added, nor does the author make the story his own. It is just the same exact version of the manuscript just told in a more simplified way. I felt it was a missed opportunity to tell one of the original Merlin stories but also to make it one’s own unique version story. Overall, I rate this book 2 out of 5 stars.

Thank you to the author for a copy of this book.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s