Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Princelings of the East Blog Tour

The Princelings of the East by Jemima Pett

About the Book

Title: The Princelings of the East (Princelings of the East Trilogy, Book 1; 2nd edition)
Author: Jemima Pett
Year published: originally published 2011
Publisher: Princelings Publications
Number of pages: 103
Recommended age: 10+
Summary (Amazon):
The Princelings of the East is the first of a trilogy telling of the adventures of Fred and George. When the King's Birthday feast is ruined by an unnatural power drain, our Princeling heroes leave their scientific experiments to set out in search of answers. They encounter the enigmatic businessman Hugo, the impressive Prince of Buckmore, the wise Lady Nimrod, the irrepressible barkeeper Victor, but find themselves threatened by those with vested interests. The scene shifts from a rural, feudal setting to the towers and heights of the curious Isle of Hattan, but where, or when, are they? Time is of the essence in solving this puzzle, and our heroes must keep their wits sharp and their heads clear if they are to survive. Suitable for good readers aged 10 and over, The Princelings of the East is a fantasy adventure with the charm of the Wind in the Willows in a world reminiscent of Anne MacCaffrey's Pern.


The Princelings of the East by Jemima Pett

Amazon (US) * Amazon (UK) * Barnes and Noble * Smashwords


The Buzz

"Jemima Pett has woven a suspenseful mystery featuring a cast of memorable characters headed by the two charismatic guinea pigs, Fred and George. Pett dives into the story right away introducing Fred and George and establishing the crux of the plot early in the book - namely, the mysterious Energy Drain. The plot line, with its many twists and turns, is very intricate and complex; thus, making it enjoyable for older tweens and even adults. Science fiction aficionados in particular will be interested in the element of time-travel in this book." ~ Mother Daughter Book Reviews, 5 Stars
"It was easy for me to settle into Pett's writing style; it's been a while since I've read anything by Anne McCaffrey or J.R.R. Tolkien, and Pett's writing is a welcomed reminder of how that style of writing can really add to a good plot-line. I have to say that I was impressed with the novel overall. Although it is for older children, it's still written in a way that will appeal to many adults." ~ Megan, Amazon, 5 Stars
"After reading The Princelings of the East, I felt as if my IQ had gone up a few points with Ms. Pett's vocabulary choices - what refreshing text. This true adventure book which includes a fight, time travel and mysterious strangers is reminiscent of Wind in the Willows - with a twist...I give this book 5 out of 5 stars. I enjoyed it very much and look forward to reading the next book in the Princelings series." ~Christine M. Goodreads, 5 Stars.

About the Author: Jemima Pett

Jemima Pett Author I've been writing since I was about 8 years old. When my mum died in 2003, I found a small booklet in her box of treasures, written in a very childish hand, entitled The Little Stream. I've been writing articles and reports for newsletters and magazines ever since, but I couldn't find interesting characters and plot for a novel! I worked in business for many years. I wrote manuals, reports, science papers, blogs, journals, anything and everything that kept the words flowing. Finally the characters jumped into my head with stories that needed to be told, and THE PRINCELINGS OF THE EAST was born. I now live in Norfolk with my guinea pigs, the first of whom, Fred, George, Victor and Hugo, provided the inspiration for my stories. And the picture is me with Fred. That's Princeling Fred, of course!

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Twitter: @Jemima_Pett

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The Princelings of the East Blog Tour Schedule (2013)

September 23
September 24
September 25
September 26
September 27
September 28
September 29
September 30
October 1
October 2
October 3
October 4
October 5
October 6
October 7

*** The Princelings of the East Blog Tour Giveaway ***

The Princelings of the East Trilogy by Jemima PettAmazon 25 gift card
                  Prize: One winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash + a paperback copy of The Princelings of the East Trilogy by Jemima Pett Contest runs: September 23 to October 20, 11:59 pm, 2013 Open: WW How to enter: Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below. Terms and Conditions: A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. If you have any additional questions - feel free to send us an email! a Rafflecopter giveaway MDBR Book Promotion Services

My Review:

Princelings George and Fred leave the safe confines of their home, Castle Marsh, to investigate a mysterious and recurring Energy Drain that ruined their grandfather, King Cole’s birthday feast (and led to a lot of good food being wasted too!). They must find the answers since this situation cannot go on forever. Soon, there might be no power left. Leaving the castle is easier than they imagined; in fact the very mention of how useful a tunnel would be is enough for a tunnel to obligingly appear. A Great Adventure calls. Fred and George, inseparable, find themselves separated but they make the best of it. They meet a number of mysterious and sometimes vaguely sinister characters, particularly the ones with a vested interest in the situation. Is the production of a delicious and popular cola drink really the problem?  And is time getting messed up somehow…?
George and Fred, although twins, are appealing and different characters. George (the Brains – he is a Thinker) and Fred (the Brawn – he is the Adventurer) make a great team, relying on each other all the time. When their adventure separates them, they must learn to rely on themselves and make decisions and choices depending on the circumstances that confront each one. They are inventive, curious, brave, and sharp-witted, no mean feat to survive in a variety of situations where petty politics rule. Both George and Fred go on a real journey of discovery, but in fact, much of the journey is internal as they miss each other’s presence, but make those vital choices alone in the end.

Author Jemima Pett creates a charming and endearing world that is a fantastical mix of medieval with technology. Detailed descriptions sink the reader right into each new location and paint vivid pictures of sights and sounds, and the way the inhabitants live. The secondary characters entertain and amuse as well, with a quaint turn of phrase, or a deep, dark purpose (depending on who it is) to give them definition. Lovely idiosyncrasies such as habits and speech patterns ensure the secondary players are fully rounded in this tale. Ms. Pett’s tongue-in-cheek humour will also give many a laugh to slightly older readers.

There is a useful list of characters and locations in the front of the book, which will help younger readers through the twists and turns of this surprisingly complex plot. The author’s illustrations that preface each chapter are delightful and help cement the reader in the context. A lovely read for all ages, with enough action, adventure, inventiveness, and fun to satisfy the most demanding reader. Fans will be delighted to learn that George and Fred’s adventures continue with the second and third books in the series. PS: George and Fred are Guinea Pigs, extremely clever ones, as you will find out!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Q and A With Cheryl Carpinello

As part of the Young Knights of the Round Table Blog Tour, I get to ask author Cheryl Carpinello all the questions one usually likes to ask and author: the how/what/when/where. Cheryl has very kindly agreed to spill the beans. So glad to have you visit my blog today, Cheryl and here come the questions.

1. When did your fascination with all things Arthurian begin?

My real interest began in college in my English Lit classes. I fell in love with Beowulf and the early English tales and ballads. We read Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, which I liked, but when we read Morte d’Arthur by Malory, I was thoroughly hooked. I love Malory’s description of the pageantry and tournaments, the knights and the court. By the time I read Tennyson’s  The Idylls of the King, there was no stopping me. I started reading whatever I could find, fiction and non-fiction. This carried over into my high school classroom where I taught the King Arthur Legend for over 20 years.

 2. What was your favourite Arthurian book as a child?

I’m a bit embarrassed to say that it wasn’t a book; it was Disney’s animated movie The Sword in the Stone! The movie was my first introduction to the King Arthur Legend. It presented an innocent look at a harsh time.
3. What is your favourite Arthurian book as an adult?

That would easily be T. H. White’s The Once and Future King. I’m a romantic, and I love the philosophy of Hope that White displays throughout the book. It’s heartfelt, humorous, thought-provoking, and brutally honest in places, and leaves me energized each time I read it. I’ve read it over ten times in the last 25 years.

 4. I love the research and many wonderful details you put into your books: where do you find these?

 Boy, that’s hard to say. I’ve always had an incredible memory for details. Over the hundreds of books I read relating to Arthur, coupled with my years of teaching a variety of Arthurian literature, some pieces just stick in my brain. The descriptions of feasts and standards in both of my books probably comes from Malory’s influence. Somewhere in my reading I remember coming across a passage that described Camelot as sitting in a high pass, so I used that in Guinevere. I did extensive research on Pembroke Castle, Cardigan Bay, and that part of Wales for Young Knights. In fact, I used The Lonely Planet’s Guide to Wales. Guide books contain lots of gems that textbooks leave out.

5. Young Knights is a truly wonderful tale. At the end of the book, I wished it had been longer because I could see where things could have been developed. Was it always your intention to write a novella?

Yes, it was. I write my Arthurian Tales for a specific audience: reluctant readers. That doesn’t mean I don’t want others to read them because I do. But those readers who can read, but choose to do other things are who I am trying to reach. Their attention span is shorter. Printed page after printed page turns them away, hence in my printed books (and in Guinevere’s eBook) each chapter starts with a picture related to the chapter. I’m a believer in encouraging kids to develop their imagination in a world where every detail is vividly laid out especially in the movies and video games that kids love. I want them to think about what might have happened, or if something else could have happened.

6. And will you be taking the adventures of Bryan, Gavin, and Philip further?

 Definitely. Future installments will probably focus on just one of the three characters at a time. That is kind of set up in the end of Young Knights. It’s also possible that readers may see some new young knights at some point.

 7. How has the reception been towards Young Knights? Are many of your readers actually adults reliving the Arthurian adventures of their youth?

Young Knights has done well since its debut in May 2012. The Children’s Literary Classics gave it their Seal of Approval as a Recommended Read and awarded it a 2012 Silver Medal for YA Fiction. Also in 2012, Young Knights was a finalist in USA’s Best Book Awards for e-Book Children. In 2013, Young Knights received an EVVY Merit Award for Juvenile/YA Fiction from the Colorado
Independent Publishers Association. The cover was also a 2013 Ariana Finalist. From the reviews I’ve read, many adult readers are enjoying the story of the Young Knights. I’ve found in this genre, that people who love Arthurian Legend eagerly devour all books that come their way. It’s nice to see that a Legend so old, still draws people to its stories.

 8. What is the best Arthurian movie ever made, in your opinion?

 I haven’t seen many of the movies out there, and my tastes are a bit eclectic. I’ve always liked First Knight. Most people don’t, but I’m a huge fan of Sean Connery. I also like the courage of Guinevere in that movie. Probably my favorite is one called The Last Legion. It tells the story of Ambrosius/Merlin leading the boy Romulus Augustus out of a defeated Rome and to the isle of Britain. Romulus carries his father’s sword Excalibur. It’s a different look at the legend.

9. Why do kids love stories of knights, quests, adventures, etc. so much? It’s amazing that in Young Knights, the young heroes are immersed (as are readers) in another world. There are no dystopian/apocalyptic scenes, and no whizz-bang SFX - just an historical adventure. What is this enduring appeal?

 Do you have a couple of days?! I can give you my ideas based on what I’ve observed in my classroom and in my workshops with kids.

 Heroes: The Legend is full of heroes not just King Arthur. Every kid wants to be a hero if only to them. Heroes live by certain standards and are not always strong, but they don’t give up or lose hope. Arthurian Legend teaches the boundaries of right and wrong, the limits placed on people’s actions, and the consequences for crossing those boundaries or exceeding those limits. Young people hunger for those examples. Kids also see how the ideals of Arthurian Legend are present in the world today and that leaves an impression on them.

 Adventure: The Legend is packed with adventure, and every kid loves adventure, even the most introverted. And what could be more adventurous that riding into battle to save the castle or the princess and going on quests for fabulous historical objects?

 Magic and Mystery: The Legend holds infinite magic and tons of mysteries. In fact, the greatest magician of all time lives in Arthurian Legend: Merlyn!

 I’m not sure if this answers your question, Fiona, but when all of the above are packed into a book, it is one heck of a story that kids devour.

 10. I just adored Guinevere when I first read it. Straying off the Young Knights briefly, will we
see more of Guinevere when she actually marries King Arthur?

 No, but you will see more of Guinevere before her marriage to Arthur. While she grew up quite a bit in On the Eve of Legend, Guinevere still has more growing to do. I’m planning on another book which focuses on her growth and also has young Cedwyn taking a bigger role in the action.

 11. If you had a time machine and could go back to King Arthur’s time and be someone at his court for a week -- who would you be?

 I’d choose either to be a squire to one of Arthur’s knights or a Lady-in-Waiting to Guinevere. Those positions would allow me to get a better view of life in Arthur’s court. As a squire, I would be able to experience what a knight’s job consisted of and how the knights actually trained. As a Lady-in-Waiting to Guinevere, I would be privy to her thoughts and would come away with a better understanding of her.

 12. Is there anything you’d like readers to know that I haven’t asked?

Yes. Readers may not know that The Young Knights of the Round Table comes with a free 18-page Teacher’s Guide with additional information on items in the story, activities, and a study guide. It is available at the time of purchase from my publisher MuseItUp Publishing, or readers may send me a message through FB, Twitter, or my website Beyond Today Educator.

Also, the Wise Owl Factory developed a free Teaching Supplement with Student Pages courtesy of the talented Carolyn Wilhelm for the book. For the time being, that can be downloaded from the site. As soon as I can take up the battle with my website, I’ll upload the Supplement there for readers.

13. You are offered a choice between Merlin’s wand and Arthur’s sword Excalibur: which one would you use in battle?

Both are appealing. Excalibur would severely test my physical strength, and if the stories are true, I’m not sure I would be able to wield it! Merlin’s wand, on the other hand, is an instrument of the mind. One does not use it recklessly! I would choose Merlin’s wand. What a feat it would be to not only learn the spells, but also to understand when to use each one.
For readers who (understandably) want more, take a peek at what went into making the award-winning MG novella Young Knights of the Round Table: The King’s Ransom. Behind the Scenes of The King’s Ransom (Book 1 of The Young Knights of the Round Table) will add to your Arthurian experience. Meet the Young Knights and then take a virtual tour of Wales with them. Get up close and personal with author Cheryl Carpinello. Read Dunham’s Story, an exclusive not found anywhere else! Read excerpts from The King’s Ransom and Guinevere: On the Eve of Legend.
By Fiona Ingram

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Saving a Spider (and Other Animals!)

This morning I saved a spider.  Not an incey-wincey cutesy spider as in the song, but a great big galumphing thing with what seem like countless legs (actually only eight!) in a leg span of around 10-12 inches. They are also known as the ‘huntsman’ spider because of their speed and how they hunt their prey. So, you might ask, why save one? My Jack Russell, Chloe, having failed the “can-you-hunt-rats?” test (the clever, faster rats always escape) is determined to prove her worth. 
Image courtesy Wikipedia
She cornered it, but with the help of a paper towel, I rescued it. Huntsman spiders are actually considered very useful because they feed on insect pests, including cockroaches. I bothered saving it, not only for the cockroach angle, but because lately I have become more and more concerned about saving creatures full stop.

Image courtesy SAFE Rescue
My recent foray into animal rescue resulted in my little e-book (pending) called Champ: The Story of My Survival. Champ is eagerly awaiting the on-sale date of his book and will be sure to alert fans and followers. I blogged recently about Champ’s book. I have become a passionate follower and avid tweeter of other sites that do a fantastic job such as PETA, Soi Dog Foundation, and countless others. I wondered if my ardent Tweeting about animals and their plights would put off my Twitter followers. In fact, I have doubled my following since I began this crusade (for want of a better word). I used to only Tweet about writing and book-related stuff, but since my Tweets now encompass myriad animal stories, petitions, and pleas for help, my new following has showed me just how much people care about animals and wild creatures. In fact, my foray into the world of animal rescue writing has led me to new projects. I started a book site dedicated to my animal rescue books, called Caladrius Books, as a way of creating animal rescue stories to make people more aware of the plight of animals in need, and to help raise funds for various organisations. I hope you’ll visit, learn more, and support the books when they are available.

Cover design by Meagan Miller

My next mission is writing about Poppy, the most famous dog in Fiji. I watched a documentary on Animal Planet called Bondi Vet. It featured Poppy’s story. Basically, Poppy’s nose got cut off in a hunting accident. She must have been in great discomfort but this never dampened her amazing friendly nature. She was brought to Animals Fiji Nadi clinic by a team effort between a teacher at an inland Fiji School who saw her foraging for food—she was skin and bone—and Julie Hoskison from Myola in Sigatoka. The call went out and a young schoolgirl called India Davies in Melbourne, Australia began the fundraising. The word spread and Poppy attracted the attention of Chris Brown, the Bondi Vet. Poppy went to Sydney for facial reconstruction (by surgeon/vet Andrew Marchevsky) at the Small Animal Hospital Sydney (SASH) there. She made a wonderful recovery, and the Davies family became her new ‘forever’ family. Although Poppy now has a new home in Australia and is basically cared for by a loving family, she has not forgotten her friends back in Fiji. Animals Fiji is in desperate need of funding to help look after the many needy animals on the island. Poppy has become the spokesdog of the fundraising program. Poppy has a Sponsor a Vet Appeal, and all funds are gratefully accepted. Proceeds from the book will go to Animals Fiji for continued animal care on the island.

Next up is the story of Melani the Sumatran tiger that survived eating tainted meat at her home zoo in Surabaya, Indonesia. There were originally four tigers, but three died. Melani, through some miracle, lived. Her plight—she was emaciated and fading fast—caught the attention of the wonderful director of an organisation called Cee4life (Conservation and Environmental Education 4 Life), Sybelle Foxcroft. Sybelle literally moved heaven and earth to get Melani moved from the zoo to an amazing animal rescue/safari park (Taman Safari Bogor) that does a fantastic job in saving and housing exotic animal species. In June 2013, after wide media reports on the frail Melani, the Minister of Forests
Cover design by Meagan Miller
ordered that Melani be removed from Surabaya Zoo and taken for treatment to Taman Safari Bogor, Indonesia. Melani now receives top care and the proper diet for her species. But this beautiful, elegant creature has a long way to go to achieve an acceptable quality of life. Melani is the most beautiful tiger, with a gentle loving nature. Her photo was used to create a compelling and haunting cover. Melani is on a long road to recovery but still needs a special diet. Please read more about her on Cee4life website and if you can, contribute to her continued recovery.

I am honoured to be able to create books about these amazing animals and their equally amazing rescuers. There are countless rescue sites and petition sites that desperately need your help. The people that tackle often dire situations, fight with red tape, battle unhelpful government officials, and struggle to raise funds, go largely unmentioned and unrewarded. Their joy is in seeing an animal saved from the brink of death; seeing that animal trust and love again; seeing that animal decide that life might just be worth living. Please do what you can to save animals and the planet. As human development encroaches into wild habitat, exotic animals suffer. As the domestic animal population increases because of lack of sterilisation or the dreaded puppy mills, more animals pay the price. I was horrified to read about the number of kill-shelters and the number of animals simply dumped for a variety of reasons by their owners. I was devastated to read about the recent mass killings of stray dogs in Romania, something that has turned into a vicious vendetta against innocent creatures.

Animal cruelty and brutal animal practices, such as the horrendous live meat export situation in Australia, world-wide industrialised animal farming in which particularly chickens, pigs, and cattle endure appalling conditions, the annual (unnecessary) dolphin killings in Japan, the illegal dog and cat meat trade in the East, the atrocious bear bile practice in China, the mass poaching of elephants and rhinos in Africa reduce me to a terrible sense of desperation. What can one person do to stem a tide of horror and brutality that makes the human side of ‘humanity’ a sick joke? One person can do what only one person can achieve. Multiply that by millions and you have a rising tide of people who say NO. Please pass the message on, please sign petitions, please make a donation, however small, to a worthy animal rescue site. We are in danger of losing the planet that was entrusted to our care. Only we can stop that happening.
My small share is what I can give freely: my writing about various issues, and spreading the word. Thank you for reading this post. Please share this with all your friends and followers. Together we can inspire change, even if it starts with saving a spider.

Saving one animal may not change the world, but the world will certainly change for that animal.
by Fiona Ingram

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Young Knights of the Round Table Blog Tour

Young Knights of the Round Table Blog Tour Button  

About the Book

The King's Ransom by Cheryl Carpinello

Title: Young Knights of the Round Table: The King's Ransom Author: Cheryl Carpinello Publication Date (Kindle): May, 2012 Publisher: MuseItUp Publishing Number of pages: 84 Recommended age: 9+ Summary (Amazon):
In medieval Wales, eleven-year-old Prince Gavin, thirteen-year-old orphan Philip, and fifteen-year-old blacksmith's apprentice Bryan are brought together in friendship by one they call the Wild Man. When an advisor to the king is killed and a jewelled medallion is stolen from the king’s treasury, the Wild Man is accused of the theft and murder. Filled with disbelief at the arrest of the Wild Man, the three friends embark upon a knight’s quest to save their friend’s life. To succeed, the three must confront their fears and insecurities, and one of them will have to disclose the biggest secret of all. Join Gavin, Philip, and Bryan on their quest and share the adventures that await them in the land of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table.


Amazon * Muse it Up * Barnes and Noble


The Buzz

"The King's Ransom is a fast-moving story, a tale of knights and castles and villains. As Gavin, Phillip, and Bryan set about to save their friend, the reader is brought vividly into the medieval world of King Arthur. There is just the right balance of action and character development to entice young readers and reluctant readers to pick this book up, as was the author's intent. I recommend it to all middle grade readers." ~ Laurie C., Amazon, 5 Stars
"The adventures these future Young Knights of the Round Table experience in their quest to save their friend are filled with the fantasy and adventure story elements that children love to read. There's a villain, secret passages in castles, swordplay, and even a witch. And with King Arthur's appearance, astonishing secret identities being revealed, and a happy ending, what more could anyone want in a good read?" ~ Tyler T., Amazon, 5 Stars
"This was a great book! I liked all of the action and excitement in it. Ms. Carpinello wrote this book really well and it was very appropriate for kids even though it deals with fighting and a wrongfully accused person. Ms. Carpinello described the time period really well, I felt like I was a knight in medieval times! I really love that the story features a bit of King Arthur legends in it! The ending had a couple fo great twists that had me totally surprised!." ~ Erik @ This Kid Reviews Books, 5 Stars.


2013 EVVY Finalist and EVVY Merit Award for Juvenile/Young Adult from Colorado Independent Publishers Assoc.
2013 Ariana Cover Finalist
2012 Silver Award Recipient for YA Fiction from Children's Literary Classics and the CLC's 2012 Seal of Approval.
2012 Finalist E-Book Children from USA 2012 Best Book Awards

About the Author: Cheryl Carpinello

Cheryl Carpinello, Author
Although a retired teacher, Cheryl Carpinello still has a passion for working with kids. She regularly conducts Medieval Writing Workshops for local elementary/middle schools and the Colorado Girl Scouts. She is not the only one who loves Medieval Times and the King Arthur Legend. The kids thoroughly enjoy writing their own medieval stories complete with dragons, wizards, unicorns and knights! She loves to travel and her other job is with a major airline. Her favorite trip was a two week visit to Egypt with her husband that included traveling by local train from one end of Egypt to the other. Some of her favorite books include The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Once and Future King, and any by the duo Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child.

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Young Knights of the Round Table Blog Tour Schedule (2013)

September 9
September 10
September 11
September 12
September 13
September 14
September 15
September 16
September 17
September 18
September 19
September 20
September 21
September 22
September 23
September 24
September 25
September 26
September 27
September 28
September 29
September 30

*** Young Knights of the Round Table Blog Tour Giveaway ***

Amazon 25 gift card Prize: One winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash Contest runs: September 9 to October 6, 11:59 pm, 2013 Open: WW How to enter: Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below. Terms and Conditions: A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. If you have any additional questions - feel free to contact Renee at Mother Daughter Book Reviews. a Rafflecopter giveaway

My Review:
When the King’s Ransom, a wondrous jewelled medallion, is stolen from Pembroke Castle in Wales, it is up to three young heroes to band together to solve this mystery and save a life. Prince Gavin (12), the youngest son of King Wallace and Queen Katherine, and his two friends, Philip (13), an orphan, and Bryan (15), a blacksmith’s apprentice, are an unlikely trio, uneven in terms of social status but firm and loyal companions. Their friend, the Wild Man, is accused of murdering the king’s advisor and stealing the marvellous medallion, a symbol of absolute power and justice, but only in the right hands. Kings have enemies, and it soon becomes apparent that someone was after the medallion for the prestige it would bestow. Gavin, Bryan, and Philip race against time to find the medallion, reveal the true killer, and save the Wild Man’s life. They have only a few days before the arrival of King Arthur. If the medallion is not found, the Wild Man will be executed in front of Arthur. Can they overcome their fears and fulfil this momentous quest? Is it possible the Wild Man has tricked them all and simply used their friendship to get closer to the medallion?

What a delightful story. I am familiar with Cheryl Carpinello’s writing from reading and reviewing her first Arthurian book, Guinevere: On the Eve of a Legend. Then I was entranced by the author’s spell-binding descriptions of life in Arthurian times and her meticulous attention to detail. Cheryl’s skills have remained as bright as ever with the unfolding of this fast-paced tale, threaded with mystery, adventure, a bit of magic, danger, darkness, and lovely twists in the end. I so enjoyed the factual information about weapons, clothing, daily life, and places, cleverly interspersed in the text and dialogue to inform without overwhelming young readers. The author has a gift for delving into the depths of each young hero’s psyche. The way each one of the trio faces their fears, learns to believe in themselves, and finds their true meaning and path in life is moving. This is a superb coming-of-age story, set in a time of chivalry and pageantry, and harking back to an age when a hero was truly a hero. Five stars!