Review Blog

Sep 05 2016

Beowulf the brave, retold by Oakley Graham

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Ill. by Emi Ordas. Big Sky Publishing, 2016. ISBN 9781925275933
(Age: 6+) Beowulf. Myths and legends. Bravery. Verse tale. Beowulf is the king of his land and rules fairly, but one day a monster, Grendel, attacks, forcing him to take steps. All the men try to defeat him without success, so Beowulf must take on the task. He fights bravely and fiercely, eventually defeating the giant where no one else could. But defeated, Grendel's mother is very angry so Beowulf must track her down and overcome her as well. It goes well and he is lauded by all in his land and hailed as a hero king. He rules quietly for many more years, but then a dragon appears, ready to take the treasure from its mound. Beowulf is called to action again, his people begging him to protect them from this new monster. He does so, killing the dragon but sustaining a mortal blow himself.
Both stories of Beowulf are well told, involving the reader in the tale from the Celtic archives. At the end of the book, the author details more about this old saga, and this little bit of information will ensure readers look to Wikipedia to find out more.
Stories of ancient tales are few in number and so are a welcome addition to any library which promotes stories from other cultures.
Fran Knight

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