Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Loamhedge

Loamhedge

Brian Jacques
Fiction  Series
For ages 12 and up
Penguin, 2004   ISBN: 044101190X

When Abruc the otter and his precocious little son Stugg find the bodies of two badgers lying in the forest, they cannot possibly imagine how their actions are going to change the lives of dozens of creatures in the months to come. One of the badgers is unfortunately dead and the other is grievously wounded. Thankfully the otters are good healers and they are able to heal the body and spirit of the injured badger. Lonna Bowstripe returns to the world of the living fiercely determined to destroy every member of the cruel sea rat hoard which attacked him and his friend. Lonna is particularly interested in meeting up with the leader of the hoard, one Raga Bol who has a pitiless heart and a sharp sword.

In the abbey of Redwall a young wheel-chair bound hare-maid called Martha has a dream. Martin the Warrior, once the champion of Redwall, talks to her telling her that in a place called Loamhedge there lies the cure for her helpless legs. Two “travellers from out of the past” may go to Loamhedge on her behalf to find the answer.

Soon enough the two travellers arrive at Redwall. Bragoon and Saro left Redwall many years ago. Now they are famous adventurers and fighters, and they are eager to take on the quest which all hope will help young Martha regain the use of her legs. With them go two of Martha’s friends and her brother Horty, a harum scarum hare with an enormous appetite, very little sense, and great courage.

Unfortunately after Bragoon and Saro leave Redwall to pursue their quest two parties of vermin, including Raga Bol’s sea rats, arrive at Redwall. The peace loving creatures living in the abbey have to turn their paws to fighting and outwitting their enemies knowing full well that this is a fight that they cannot afford to lose.

Vivid characters who will delight and appal the reader fill this Redwall tale. Horty with his bottomless stomach and his tendency to get injured in the most ridiculous ways can always be relied on for a laugh. Readers will be alternately horrified and delighted as the battle to save Redwall from the vermin hoards unfolds. Packed with soaring deeds of courage, bravery, and self sacrifice, this is a tale which will delight Redwall fans and give newcomers to the series a new and wonderful story telling experience.

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