Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Martin the Warrior by Brian Jacques

This book was the second I read in the Redwall series, and I gave it a rating of four out of five. In the first book, Redwall, Martin has been dead for quite a while, but he is spoken of as a hero of the castle and takes on an almost god-like status. Martin the Warrior explains his life. Martin loses his father's sword to an evil ruler. He escapes and vows to free all of the slaves and get his sword back. The plot follows the escapees as they try to find reinforcements to help rescue the other captives. Martin's group is captured and attacked by other forces along the way. In the meantime, the evil ruler is combating some problems within his own fortress caused by a former partner and rebels.

I enjoy the mystery and adventure in the book, although some people might want a bit more action. Some of my students have complained that they can't understand some of the characters, especially the moles. The author writes the dialogue the way they speak, and it can be a challenge. My suggestion, don't worry about the moles' individual words; you can usually figure out what they're trying to say from the context. The plot skips back and forth between three settings, so that may confuse some readers also. One setting is in the evil fortress, and the other two settings follow the escapees after they are separated.

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