Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

In the Time of Knights

In the Time of Knights

Shelley Tanaka
Illustrator:  Greg Ruhl 
Historical Fiction
For ages 9 to 12
Hyperion, 2000   ISBN: 0786806516

The second son of a powerful warrior, William Marshall knew that if he wanted to become a knight he was going to have to earn his spurs – he could not expect his father to help him. So William went to France to be an apprentice in the castle of his cousin, and there he excelled in his fighting and horse riding training. He was a little rough around the edges however, and could not see why he had to learn how to read, write, and speak French. More than anything he was keen to become a knight and eager to begin a new life.

At last William was dubbed a knight by his cousin, and soon after he was able to go to into battle to fight against the French. William did well in his first battle, though he also learned that he must take the time to take prisoners or spoils, for it was expected that a knight should have something to show for his efforts.

In time William found his niche – at least he thought he had. He loved fighting in the tournaments and was soon famous throughout the land. Then he learned that there is more to being a knight than fighting and earning prizes.

Superbly written from the point of view of William, this true story about a famous knight is sure to fascinate young readers who dream of knights, tournaments, the age of chivalry, and great battles. In addition to William’s story, readers will find informational text boxes on many pages that provide a wealth of background information. Full color illustrations fill the book.

This is one of the books in the "I was there" series.