- Age Range: 11 and up
- Grade Level: 6 and up
- Series: Living History Library
- Paperback: 237 pages
- Publisher: Bethlehem Books; New edition edition (April 1, 1999)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1883937388
- ISBN-13: 978-1883937386
- Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5.8 x 8.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #70,091 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Hittite Warrior (Living History Library) Paperback – April 1, 1999
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About the Author
JOANNE S. WILLIAMSON was born in 1926, in Arlington, Massachusetts. Though she had interests in both writing and music, and attended Barnard College and Diller Quaile School of Music, it was writing which became the primary focus for her car¬eer after college. She was a feature writer for Con¬necticut newspapers until 1965, when she moved to Kennebunkport, Maine and began to write historical fiction for young people.
In each of Miss Williamson's novels, now totaling eight with God King, she explores unusual historical slants of well-known events. In her first book, Jacobins Daughter, she tells a true story of the French Revolution; in The Eagles Have Flown, she presents a picture of Julius Caesar's time and gives a sympa¬thetic portrayal of Brutus. She has a remarkable knack for using her fictional characters and plot to make connections between real historical persons and events. In a time when history is often taught in bits and pieces these connections are a great help, not only to the younger reader, but to the older one as well. Her third book, Hittite Warrior, has been well received in its recent reprinting for just this facility in showing the inter-relatedness of the ancient Hittite, Hebrew, Canaanite and Greek peoples in the 12th century before Christ. In God King, written some years ago, but now published for the first time, similar fascinat¬ing connections are made for a later period in Israel's history.
Now interest has been rekindled in her books and in those of other writers of historical fiction. This renewal should be a great source of sat¬isfaction to the many readers, young and old, who are discovering again the fasci¬nation of man's story throughout the ages.
Joanne Williamson died July 5, 2002.
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Top Customer Reviews
On the way, we are introduced to all kinds of Hittite, Phoenician, Israelite, and Canaanite customs. We learn about their dress, their gods (particularly the dreadful Moloch), their methods of fighting, their habits of enslaving captive peoples, and so on. The book has obviously been carefully researched, and the plot is plausible and interesting.
I give the book three stars because the writing is terrible. The fact that the book is for children does not excuse this. Sentences are frequently awkward in construction, and the book reads like a first draft. For instance, the writer will say something like, "The warrior rushed towards me, and I hit him with a stick that I had picked up several moments ago before he attacked me." That's a paraphrase, but you see what I mean. Why on earth weren't we told about the stick BEFORE the warrior rushed towards him? It's as thought the writer just thought of the weapon, and instead of putting the event in it's proper place, she flings it in as an afterthought. This kind of sloppy editing occurs throughout the text. As imaginative fiction, it's great, but this book is NOT a good example for kids to follow in style, editing, or structure.
I guess I should blame myself for this next part--after all, it's a book about a "warrior"--but I didn't expect it to be so violent and in some places gory. I assumed, based on reviews of other mothers having read this with their children, that while there was action and battle, there wouldn't be images described like throats being slit and blood gurgling out. I'm not super happy I read that to my kids.
I can't say that I "liked" the book, but that could be because I don't like what was really going on. That's not the book's fault since it all did happen. I'm not one to bury my head in the sand, but I don't relish this stuff, either. So, while I wouldn't shoot the messenger, I'd have liked a better heads up before purchasing than reviews that say simply, "It puts you in the action!"
Sadly, this so far fun read stumbles and falls when it reaches the ending. Inexplicably, the book abruptly changes direction and the ending simply does not make sense in conjunction with the rest of the story, perhaps because the moral behind the book didn't fit with the plot with the plot; Uriah's actions made little sense and the Hebrews' less. It wasn't terrible - it had a good message about forgiveness - but it very badly needed streamlining with the rest of the story, and the characters' motives could have done with much more attention. For me, it just seemed too implausible and somewhat soured my experience of the novel, which was a shame.
The characterisation of this book was competent, although some of the characters felt a little lifeless. The writing strategy was equally competent - a previous reviewer has correctly pointed out it's occasional clumsiness, but by in large it keeps the book going. This book's real strength and driving force was it's plot, which was full of adventure, action, and fascinating descriptions of civilisations neglected by history. Overall, a just about worthwhile read for anyone under the age of 13 or so.