Full disclosure; I can very well see giving this book another chance sometime in the next couple of years and discovering that I enjoy it more than I did this go around. That seems likely, even. That said, this go around, I though it was...ok.
Possible reasons for this include the fact that Joe picked five fantasy novels for me to read (not a bad thing, but I might have just burnt out on fantasy by the end) or the fact that I read John Crowley's brilliant and beautiful Little, Big right before this one. I wanted something that good and this wasn't it. The fact is that I simply prefer other Arthur tales, whether they be the classic Le Morte d'Arthur or even Mark Twain's Connecticut Yankee In King Arthur's Court. This one seemed like a slower, less engaging take on both of those books. It had its moments, but not enough of them and with too many forgettable moments in between.
Like I said, I might just need to cleanse my palette and come back for another taste of this. Critics acknowledge it as a classic in its own right and Joe swears that it's great. It just never pulled me in. Maybe next time.