Gatty's Tale by Kevin Crossley-Holland
I picked up this book from the library on an impulse: my current topic of interest is the Crusades, and Gatty's Tale, looked as though it would satisfy this itch. Chronicling the journey of a young girl who undertakes a pilgrimage, Kevin Crossley-Holland takes his spunky little protagonist on a fascinating journey from Wales to Jerusalem, as well as from girlhood to womanhood.
The year is 1203, and Gatty is a fifteen year old field-girl employed by Lady Gwyneth de Ewloe as a chamber-servant to accompany her on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Lady Gwyneth wants to travel to Jerusalem to obtain forgiveness from some as-yet unknown sin, and has gathered together nine pilgrims to make the journey with her across Europe to the heart of the world.
The pilgrims are an assorted lot: a husband and wife, a music teacher, a lady-in-waiting, a prie... Read More
Kevin Crossley-Holland(1941- )
Kevin Crossley-Holland won the Carnegie Medal in l985 for Storm. His many notable books for adults and children include poetry, classic retellings and anthologies. He has written and presented many BBC radio programmes and is a frequent speaker at schools and libraries. For some years he held a university post in Minnesota. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. Learn more at his website.
The Arthur Trilogy — (2000-2003) Ages 9-12. Publisher: The year is 1199, and on the borders of England and Wales young Arthur de Caldicot waits impatiently to grow up and become a knight. One day his father’s friend Merlin gives Arthur a shining black stone, and he starts to see stories of his namesake, King Arthur. As the stories of the two Arthurs intertwine, the narrative builds to a thrilling and mysterious climax.
Gatty's Tale by Kevin Crossley-Holland
Havelok the Dane (1964) Publisher: The legend of Havelok the Dane derives from events of the Viking period. It ells the story of how the young prince Havelok escapes from the clutches of his wicked guardian, assisted by Grim, a jovial fisherman, and lands on the desolate Lincolnshire coast at the place now known as Grimsby.
Beowulf — (1982) Ages 9-12. Publisher: This is the story of a young man who travelled far across the sea to fight two terrifying monsters-one who could rip a man apart and drink his blood, the other who lived like a sea-wolf at the bottom of a dark, blood-stained lake. His name was Beowulf, and his story was written down in Anglo-Saxon in the eighth century. Kevin Crossley-Holland retells the story for children in strong, rhythmical prose, with striking illustrations by Charles Keeping.
Storm — (1985) Ages 9-12. Publisher: Annie loves everything about the marsh near her home, except for the stories of a ghost who roams there, and then one stormy night she faces her fear, when she must travel through the marsh to fetch the doctor to help deliver her sister’s baby.
The Tale of Taliesin (1992) Ages 9-12. With Gwyn Thomas. The authors of “Tales from the Mabinogion” present another retelling of Celtic legend. Ceridwen the witch is concerned about her ugly, unpleasant son, Morfran, so she works a spell which should turn him into the world’s wisest wizard. Unfortunately, things do not go according to plan.
Outsiders — (2007) Ages 9-12. Publisher: Six strange and haunting stories, set in isolated communities inland and by the sea, where insiders stick together, and outsiders — a girl outlawed for her illegitimate child, a wild man who walks out of the sea — are regarded with suspicion. Kevin Crossley-Holland has a genius for reinventing folk tales in a way that makes the characters real people, whose thoughts and feelings are our own. This little collection brings together some of his finest and most admired retellings, including the three best-known of all, ‘The Green Children’, ‘Sea-Tongue’ and ‘The Wild Man’. Linked by ideas about exile and displacement, they make a thought-provoking book for our times, beautifully presented with line drawings by a notable artist.
Crossing to Paradise — (2008) Young adult. Publisher: Gatty is a field girl on a manor. She has never seen busy London or the bright Channel, the snowy Alps of France or the boats in the Venetian sea. She has not sung in the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem or prayed at the manger in Bethlehem — or been kidnapped, or abandoned, or kissed, or heartbroken. But all these things will change. As Gatty journeys with Lady Gwyneth and a prickly new family of pilgrims across Europe to the Holy Land, Kevin Crossley-Holland reveals a medieval world as rich and compelling as the world of today it foresees — and, in Gatty, a character readers will never forget.
Waterslain Angels — (2008) Publisher: In the village of Waterslain in Norfolk, in the 1950s, a fragment from a carved angel’s wing is discovered. Maybe the wooden angels that once supported the church roof were not, after all, destroyed centuries ago, but spirited away to safety. Two children decide to find them. There are few clues, but a strange inscription on the church wall leads them into terrifying places – up to the top of the church tower, down a tunnel where they are nearly drowned. Annie dreams of the man who was sent in by Cromwell to smash up the church, and of angels flying and falling. For Sandy, whose father, an American airman, was recently killed, the angels bring comfort. The whereabouts of the angels becomes clear to them – but then they discover that other people are hunting for them, and are determined to stop the children at all costs. The friendship between the boy adjusting to a new life in his mother’s village, and the girl whose family have always lived on their remote farm, the haunting atmosphere of the Norfolk saltmarshes, and the strong sense of the past still present, give richness to a tense and fast-paced story of detection for younger readers.