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Cadnum, Michael.

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ISBN 10: 0670883867 / ISBN 13: 9780670883868
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Windy Hill Books
Bacova, VA, U.S.A.

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About this Item

Viking, (2000) FIRST EDITION. FINE in FINE dustjacket. 204 pages, boards. Story set in 12th century England about a young boy forced to accompany a knight as squire on a Crusade to the Holy Land where they find themselves in one of history's classic horse and lance battles, the Battle of Arsuf. Bookseller Inventory # 07175

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Binding: Hardcover

Dust Jacket Condition: Dust Jacket Included

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title


Edmund, a young apprentice, is awaiting punishment as a counterfeiter when a knight intervenes on his behalf--and compels Edmund to join Richard Lionheart's forces in the Holy Land. There, amidst the savagery of the twelfth-century Crusades, Edmund learns both courage and compassion, and discovers that cruelty is sometimes considered the will of Heaven. Set in medieval England and the war-torn shores of the Middle East, Cadnum's tale weaves together a rich tapestry of storms at sea, the brutality of hand-to-hand combat, and one of the classic horse and lance battles in recorded history--the Battle of Arsuf.


"God wills it!" the Crusaders cry in battle. In this richly detailed and lovingly crafted story, Michael Cadnum explores the terrible paradox of holy war through the eyes of Edmund, a young apprentice metalworker, who finds himself unexpectedly rescued from prison and pressed into service as a squire to a knight. Without a bit of experience with horses or swords, Edmund goes off in terror and delight to help rescue the True Cross from the infidels in Jerusalem, and finds his manhood in surviving the siege of the sea-fortress Acre and the terrible bloody battle of Arsuf.

This is not the sanitized version of the Middle Ages that appears in so many young adult novels. From the first scene, in which the king's men punish Edmund's master by whacking off his hand, Cadnum gives us the authentic brutality of the period--its stink and bugs, random cruelty, drunkenness, and sudden death--as well as its colorful pageantry and lofty ideals. His previous medieval novel, In a Dark Wood, first showed his poetic skill with the small, vivid details that bring these times alive in all their strangeness. In The Book of the Lion, Edmund's journey to the Holy Land is full of such moments, as well as the heart-stopping adventure teens enjoy. The many young readers who are in love with the Middle Ages will come away from this story with their understanding of that time (and our own) enriched and deepened. (Ages 12 and older) --Patty Campbell

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Windy Hill Books is a mail order book business specializing in modern out-of-print and collectible children's books in gift condition. We have over 22,000 books and less that 1% of our inventory are bookclub editions, library discards or paperbacks.

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