Summary: As the inhabitants of Redwall Abbey bask in the glorious Summer of the Late Rose, all is quiet and peaceful. But things are not as they seem. Cluny the Scourge, the evil one-eyed rat warlord, is hell-bent on destroying the tranquility as he prepares to fight a bloody battle for the ownership of Redwall. This dazzling story in the Redwall series is packed with all the wit, wisdom, humor, and blood-curdling adventure of the other books in the collection, but has the added bonus of taking the reader right back to the heart and soul of Redwall Abbey and the characters who live there.
My Review: Do you remember the PBS Redwall series that aired in the mid-to-late 90s? My brothers were obsessed. It was one of those shows that I never actually watched, but I could probably still sing the opening song, and I had a rudimentary knowledge of the characters.
I was lamenting to my mom that I needed a good series to hook my oldest into, and she suggested I just try Redwall. She warned me that it wasn't her cup of tea, but I told her I'd read it first and see if it was something I'd be willing to pass along to my son. I grabbed a few books from the series from her library, packed them away, and went to bed - but I made the mistake of starting the first book before I fell asleep. And I didn't sleep much that night.
Brian Jacques has created an entire world that is enchanting. The forest creatures are divided into good and evil, and I'll be honest, I spent a lot of time googling images of the different species so I could see them better in my mind. However, despite my lack of knowledge of woodland creatures, I found myself pulled into the story and didn't want to look back.
This is definitely a book written for a middle-age reader, but it's full of adventure, just a hint of romance, legends, destiny, and just good writing. I passed it to my son with a little trepidation, but he's really been enjoying the books. As for that PBS show? Our library has it on DVD, and our entire brood has devoured them.
My Rating: Four and a half stars
For the Sensitive Reader: There are quite a few deaths in the novel, and some of them are a little gruesome. Also, some of the wrong characters die. Again, I would recommend this for middle readers - no one under the age of nine or ten, despite their maturity.