Oh how I always wish (at least for a while) that my days off are this productive. Not only did I finish the first book in Mary Stewart's Merlin Trilogy, The Crystal Cave, I also wrote a fair bit. It was actually a longer chapter than I have written for my fantasy serial in a while. We're finally getting down to the action in this chapter, Chapter 33, and the subsequent ones after this one. It should be good, especially when we get to some climactic duels and other surprises. Back to the book though, it wasn't too bad. I actually plan on reviewing all three books when I am completed with the other two. You see I have them in one big book like LOTR (Lord of the Rings). I was actually expecting more magic from Merlin, but instead he is an intelligent, insightful, medicine man and military engineer. Which he is all of those things, but he relies on trickery and deception instead of magic and claims to have no real connection to such forces. He does have visions, but that is the extent of his magical powers so far. I wanted magic and sorcery, and all I got was an interesting backstory on a great character and now the second book is going to focus more on Arthur and Uther Pendragon. That's fine, but I wish Mary Stewart had done more with Merlin's young life; perhaps make it much more interesting and dynamic. She glazed over so much in just summary, and she honestly (in my humble literary critique position) took a boring approach to penning the Merlin/Arthur saga, at least so far. Hopefully the remaining two books will showed marked improvement. She wrote a lot of good information about what happened before Uther and Arthur came to power which is the piece I was missing in my Arthurian knowledge, now she has to improve on what others have done or else she has lost me. We'll see.