Thursday, January 24, 2013
Book Review: Redwall
Ok, ok, so I'm behind the times. Redwall came out in 1986. But I only just got around to reading it a couple of weeks ago. I read it in one sitting in one night.
Interesting book + fast reader = well, I didn't get to bed until after 11, but I finished the book!
I've been skeptical of the Redwall series for years. My younger brothers enjoyed them, but I was grown by the time they discovered them and they were just kids. I had tried getting into another series they liked (Wally McDoogle) but it just wasn't for me. (Admittedly a very different series, but I was too busy to pick up a book I might not enjoy at the time.)
Another turnoff was that I had heard Redwall described as C.S. Lewis's Narnia meets Tolkien meets King Arthur. I don't particularly like it when books are described in terms of other books. In this case, I think it was a case of well intentions gone astray.
They say it's like Narnia because the animals talk and have their own land. Let us all take a moment to realize that Lewis is not the only person to have thought of that.
They say Tolkien because there's a battle between good and evil (at least, that's pretty much the only connection I could come up with).
They say Arthur because ... well, Arthur is quite a legitimate comparison.
But really, I think Redwall stands on it's own. There's no need to compare it to the greats. It's its own land, story, and time. I think children would understand it entirely and enjoy it, but it is not just for children. I rather enjoyed reading it myself. Actually, I enjoyed it so much that I'm going to ask my brothers what books they have from the series laying around that I can borrow from them.
Tales of good versus evil never go out of style. Neither do tales of heroism and bravery. Everyone has a part to play, and though you know how the story will broadly end - the book is worth the journey.
I, for one, look forward to traveling the seasons of Redwall.
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