Monday, July 9, 2007

Blood Red Horse

I haven't been deliberately picking out books with colors in the title, but I'm always excited when my local library adds new YA books on CD's to their collection. I picked up Blood Red Horse by K.M. Grant and was not disappointed to listen to a book that would appeal to both boys and girls. (The SCBWI-Carolinas listserve has been having a lively discussion on what types of books appeal to boys and whether we as writers write to their interests, or write what we feel passionately about. Interesting dilemma for writers!)

This first book in the de Granville Trilogy recounts (in vivid, gory detail- thus the boy interest!) is written from the perspective of two young men during the 12th century Crusade. One, a Christian knight, the other a Muslim emir. Through the events which are shown in remarkable, historic detail, they both end up loving the same "blood red horse." The valued animal ends up being a catalyst for partial reconciliation between the two enemies. The author not only portrays the conflicts and experiences of both young men, but it is also an eye-opening account of the Crusades. I highly recommend it for readers in middle school and high school. Younger mature readers might also appreciate it, although given the nature of the subject, there is quite a bit of violence.

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