If you have a reluctant reader in your house who needs high interest fiction (and especially if said reader is a boy), check out this book. This is book five in Black's The Knights of Arrethtrae series. Swords of Valor is the only one in the series that we've tried, but there is enough action to intrigue my son and enough allegory to make mom happy. It is a bit King Arthur-esque and is a fantastic vocabulary builder. (In fact, pulling spelling and vocab from this book/series would be a great project for some enterprising homeschool mom who is feeling especially benevolent.) Attending a renaissance festival this school year? Add this one to your book list as a literature tie-in. Enjoy!
This book is one of my favorites. Chuck Black is so talented in allegorical writing! Sir Quinlan instantly became one of my favorite characters. Thanks, Mr. Black for making such wonderful stories, please keep writing!
In the time since I posted my review of the first book in the Kingdom's Dawn, I've read all of the Kingdom books (without actually buying a single one!). I was almost a little afraid to start the Knights of Arrethtrae series, because I figured they couldn't possibly be as good as the first series.
I was wrong. They are even better.
Sir Quinlan and the Swords of Valor, is, in fact, my favorite I've read so far. Unlike the Kingdom series, which was an allegory of familiar Bible stories, each book in The Knights of Arrethtrae series focuses on a single virtue or vice that we often encounter in our Christian walk.
The main character, Twitch, is a quiet, somewhat shy boy who has never been the best at anything. Content to rest in the shadow of his best friend and adopted older brother, Tav, Twitch lives a very ordinary, uneventful life.
When Tav's Uncle Baylor comes with a message that the Prince needs Tav to become a part of an elite team called The Swords of Valor, Twitch knows he is going to miss his friend. But Tav refuses to go- so Twitch offers to leave instead.
Rejected at first, Twitch has a hard time of it from the start. The other members of The Swords of Valor look down on him because of his lack of skill, both with his words and with the sword. Just when things seem to getting better for Twitch, an unimaginable tragedy happens- a tragedy all of the other members blame on Twitch and causes The Swords of Valor to disband.
Alone and miserable, Twitch is astounded when the prince calls him to a seemingly impossible mission. A mission that will take just as much courage to overcome his self-doubt as it will to overcome the enemy.
I greatly enjoyed this book- and I can't wait to get my hands on the next one!
I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.
Several months ago, a friend recommended Chuck Black's Kingdom Series to me. My children devour books quickly so I am always looking for quality selections. We were give book one of the Kingdom Series and my daughter was hooked. When Sir Quilan and the Sword of Valor arrived at our door, I had to remind her that I needed to read it first.
From the first few pages I was captured into the story of Twitch. Twitch was a young man that was average or even a bit below average. He had given himself to service for the Prince but wasn't the greatest swordsman and walked in the shadow of his friend Tav.
However, the Prince, uses the unlikely and the ordinary to do great things. When Twitch gives himself to whatever the Prince needs him for, the Prince changes Twitch and helps Twitch to see who he is in the Prince's eyes. Along this journey, Twitch transforms into Sir Quilan and encounters many challenges and obstacles that make him a mighty servant of the Prince. Sadly, not all heed the call of the Prince and their journey does not end well.
Mr. Black does an excellent job with this allegory. The setting of knights and swords and mighty battles engages young readers and opens the door for great conversation. Discussion questions are provided in the back of the book. My daughter and I have discussed much about the book and how it relates to our walk with Christ. As a father of 6, Mr. Black knows his audience well. We look forward to reading more of Mr. Black's Knight's series. Sir Quilan and the Swords of Valor is one we would recommend to others.