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The Kitchen Knight: A Tale of King Arthur Paperback – July 15, 2007
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From School Library Journal
Grade 3 Up-- While this tale is retold in most adaptations of Arthurian legend, it is not readily available in a single, lavishly illustrated version such as this one. The story is of Gareth of Orkney, Gawaine's brother, who hides his identity to serve a year as a kitchen boy in King Arthur's court, and his quest to the Perilous Gard in the company of Linette, who also hides her identity and reviles him throughout their journey to rescue her sister, Linesse. He falls in love at first distant sight of Linesse, who checks him out by kidnapping his dwarf, but decides he's worthy and agrees to marry him. There is a lot more to the story, of course, and Hodges gets in all the essentials that Malory included, leaving out some unexplained characters and repetitive battles. She also leaves out Gareth's comment that he doesn't listen to women, anyway. Just as well, even though it's a comment appropriate to its time, and quite telling about chivalry. Linesse's testing of a man who saved her life may be understood to be wise in a time when women were kidnapped and treated as property. The loose ends tend to be Malory's own. This does not tell in quite the straight line of Gawaine's adventure with the loathly damsel, told also by Chaucer's Wife of Bath. Hyman's richly romantic illustrations are lush watercolors, framed and broken with framed insets for closeups and framed text inside the panoramic picture. The format is horizontal, capturing the sweep of the story. While not a tale of King Arthur, it's a wonderful taste of Arthurian legend, hopefully whetting young appetites for more. --Helen Gregory, Grosse Pointe Public Library, MI
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Dramatic...A beautifully illustrated medieval story." (Booklist ) --Booklist
"A grand tale in a handsome edition." (Kirkus Reviews ) --Booklist
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Top Customer Reviews
The story of the "Kitchen Knight" is one of the best stories in the Arthurian cycle. Unforutnatley, it is also one of the stories with so much odd detail. Margeret Hodges does a beautiful job of boiling down the story to its essential parts. In addition, Trina Schart Hyman's wonderful illustrations add yet another level of pleasure to the story. Highly recommended.
The story is based on one of the legends of King Arthur. It is about a young man who seeks favor with the King Arthur; he goes on a journey, faces many foes and yes saves a princess locked in a tower. However, the maiden in the tower does have a fiery sister which makes the story a bit less patriarchal. The pictures are the main attraction and they are beautiful. It is standard paperback book quality. I would not recommend it for children younger than 1st grade unless they have a decent attention span because there is quite a bit of text.