#RetroHugos1941 The Ill-Made Knight, by T.H. White
The Sword In The Stone won a convincing victory in the Best Novel category for last year's 1939 Retro Hugos. The Ill-Made Knight, which is the third part of The Once And Future King, will have it tougher this year - despite being in large part the basis for the musical Camelot, I think it's less well-known than the first part, and faces strong rivals with traditional fan appeal in Slan and Gray Lensman. It will, however, get one of my nominations and probably my vote. Years before The Mists of Avalon, White grappled with the Arthur/Guinevere/Lancelot triangle and came up with his own solution, of real people trying on the whole to do the decent thing in a time of bitter conflict, to a certain extent making it up as they go along; drawing on Malory and Spenser and Tennyson, but also making the story his own. I think I first read it when I was thirteen, and had maybe reread it once in the subsequent 35 years, but I was pleased at how much of it seemed both familiar and fresh. Well worth your consideration.