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Number of Pages: 352
Vendor: Penguin Books
Dimensions: 7.74 X 5.12 X 0.95 (inches)
Series: Tale of Redwall
The question in this first volume is resoundingly clear: What can the peace-loving mice of Redwall Abbey do to defend themselves against Cluny the Scourge and his battle-seasoned army of rats? If only they had the sword of Martin the Warrior, they might have a chance. But the legendary weapon has long been forgotten-except, that is, by the bumbling young apprentice Matthias, who becomes the unlikeliest of heroes. Teeming with riddles, humor, unforgettable characters, and high-bounding adventure, the original Redwall, the launching point for a series that has captured the world's attention, features seven full-color illustrations by renowned illustrator Troy Howell. This new paperback edition is a must-have for both longtime fans and first-time readers.
A well-known radio personality in his native Liverpool--as well as an actor, stand-up comic, and playwright--Brian Jacques was the host of "Jakestown" on BBC Radio Merseyside. Ever the performer, Jacques was well-known for applying his acting and entertainment background to his lively presentations to legions of young fans at schools across the United States and England.
Brian Jacques was born in Liverpool, England on June 15th, 1939. Along with forty percent of the population of Liverpool, his ancestral roots are in Ireland, County Cork to be exact.
He grew up in the area around the Liverpool docks. His interest in adventure stories began at an early age with reading the books of: Daniel Defoe, Sir Henry Rider Haggard, Arthur Conan Doyle, Sir Thomas Malory, Robert Michael Ballantyne, Robert Louis Stevenson, Edgar Rice Burroughs, and Kenneth Grahame. He attended St. John's School, an inner city school that had its playground on the roof. On his first day at St. John's, at the age of ten, he had an experience that marked his potential as a writer. When given an assignment of writing a story about animals, he wrote about the bird that cleaned a crocodile's teeth. The teacher could not, and would not, believe that a ten year old could write that well. When young Brian refused to falsely say that he had copied the story, he was caned as "a liar". He had always loved to write, but it was only then, that he realized that he had a talent for writing.
Some teachers at St. John's proved to be good role models. As Mr. Jacques recalls:
"My favourite teacher was Mr. Austin Thomas. He looked like Lee Marvin. Big Man. A Captain in World War II. He came to school on a big bush bike with the haversack on back. He was a man's man. Always fair. I was fourteen at the time when Mr. Thomas introduced the class to poetry and Greek literature. (Because of him, I saved seven shillings and sixpence to buy The Iliad and The Odyssey at this dusty used book shop.)"
This interest in poetry extended to Wordsworth, Tennyson, and Goldsmith.It was also at St. John's that Brian met a teacher, Alan Durband (who also taught two Beatles, Paul McCartney and George Harrison), who, more than thirty years later would bring about a major change in his life.
After Brian finished school at fifteen, he set out to find adventure as a merchant seaman. He travelled to many far away ports, including New York, Valparaiso, San Francisco, and Yokohama. Tiring of the lonely life of a sailor, he returned to Liverpool where he worked as a railway fireman, a longshoreman, a long-distance truck driver, a bus driver, a boxer, a bobby (Police Constable 216D), a postmaster, and a stand-up comic.
Penguin mourns the passing of celebrated childrens book author Brian Jacques
babearkansasAge: Over 65Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5All Redwall books are great.February 28, 2012babearkansasAge: Over 65Gender: femaleValue: 5I am commenting on all of the Redwall books. I am retired, have read all my life. I LOVE books, good books. I know these books are supposed to be for the younger generation, but I love all of them. They are something I can sit down and totally get absorbed in. I am sorry we lost Mr. Jacques and could not have more from him. The Redwall series remind me of books I read as a child, but better quality. The characters in his books are lifelike.
Danielle3 Stars Out Of 5September 24, 2010DanielleI was very bored with this book. I tried to get into it but i couldn't! I even read the next 5 books but they were basically the same plot with different characters. I was pretty disappointed with this book/series.
jared5 Stars Out Of 5August 11, 2009jaredWow,what a great book non stop fun.The first in a great sires. That I love