Knight: A Noble Guide for Young Squires
Illustrated by Milivoj Ceran and Neil Chapman
Illuminated by Alistair Graham
Novelty and Picture Book
Ages 7 to 10
Candlewick, 2006, 0-7636-3062-4
Sir Geoffrey De Lance has got himself in a spot of trouble. He has been captured by Sir Denis d’Oc who will not free Sir Geoffrey until a ransom of forty pounds has been paid. Sir Geoffrey does not happen to have this kind of money available and his only hope is that his son Hector will, in a few years time, be able to come and rescue him. Sir Geoffrey writes his son a letter explaining all this and with the letter he includes a book which he hopes will teach his son all the skills he will need know to become the kind of young man who will be able to mount a successful rescue mission.
The book is a guide which will help Hector learn how to understand the code of chivalry, the conduct that is expected of a knight. Of course before he can be a knight he will be a squire, or a knight in training. As a squire much of his time will be spent either in training, or in serving his master who will be a knight. He will learn how to use and care for his weapons, how to ride and care for a horse, how to fight both on horseback and on foot, how to fight a battle, and much more.
Full of wonderful full page illustrations, pop-ups, pages to unfold, mini books and other novelty features, this is the kind of book which readers can spend many hours looking through. It is packed with all kinds of unexpected pieces of information about medieval life which are presented in an engaging and entertaining way. Furthermore, as the book is written by Hector’s father, his voice comes through loud and clear in an often humorous way. After all it would not do for Hector to forget that the whole point of this exercise is that Hector is expected to rescue his father from captivity.
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