The Princess, the Crone, and the Dung-Cart Knight by Gerald Morris

The Princess, the Crone, and the Dung-Cart Knight(Cover picture courtesy of Rainbow Resource Center.)

Sarah knelt and cleaned her blade on the grass, then sheathed it.  Her stomach was tight and she was slightly nauseated, but she felt no emotion.

Ever since her mother and guardian were killed, thirteen-year-old Sarah has been living on her own, searching for the murderer.  Her quest for revenge leads to greater adventure when she witnesses Queen Guinevere being kidnapped.  Soon Sarah is accompanying Sir Gawain and Squire Terence on a remarkable journey to rescue the queen.  But as the plot thickens, Sarah begins to learn the true consequences of vengeance and what it really means to be a princess.

Well, this was Book 6 of The Squire’s Tales series and I can confidently say that so far I love the whole series.  There is no ‘bad’ book in Gerald Morris’ retellings of the Arthurian legends; they’re all great.

Although from the summary I expected Sarah to be a typical girl empowerment character, that was far from the truth.  Her actions make sense and her character arc is gradual, but very powerful.  Just as a warning to younger readers, let me say that this book is more graphic than the others and may offend sensitive readers.  After all, the reason Sarah is looking for revenge is based on real, very tragic historical events.  And the road to revenge is not without its victims, so just keep that in mind.

Once again Gawain and Terence show up near the end of the book, but it is Sarah and her Dung-Cart Knight that play a much more important part in the story.  Gerald Morris certainly has an interesting take on Lancelot, who shows up later on.  Lancelot has changed immensely from the first few books when he was a caricature of a proper knight: foppish, immersed in courtly love, etc.  He has actually acquired some depth in this book and I look forward to seeing him in the next few books, if only to see how these changes affect his new life at court.

With a fast plot, amazing characters both old and new and hints at the tragic ending of the Arthurian legends, you won’t want to put down The Princess, the Crone, and the Dung-Cart Knight.  Even though it’s aimed at younger readers I loved it, which is why I recommend it to readers of all ages.

I give this book 4.5/5 stars.

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