This is time travel and historical fiction at its best.
Book Title: The Shield (The Finder Series Book 1) by C.J. Bentley
Category: Middle Grade Fiction
Genre: Time travel / Historical fiction
Publisher: Clink Street Publishing
Release Date: July 18, 2017
Content Rating: G
People lose their belongings. That is a fact of life. It can happen by accident, but sometimes it can happen when you put them in a very safe place and forget where that safe place is. Not many people are good at finding them again. A young, gutsy girl with a kind heart, who's searching for her own identity growing up in the 1960's, just happens to be very good at finding things. Can she be the one to help return whatever is lost – anywhere and at any time – to its original owner? With the help of a beautiful, yet mysterious wise woman and a chivalrous knight she does just that. She finds and returns his shield, lost in battle, which unbeknown to her holds a secret that is important to his King, the safety of the Kingdom and the life of the daughter of his best friend. The Shield is the first story in The Finder Series, taking our heroine on extraordinary journeys back in time. Her first adventure takes place in Medieval England in 1340 where she meets King Edward 111, his wife Philippa and their son, who will later become the Black Prince.
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Reviewed by Sandra Olshaski
A girl "10 years and 4 months old" is narrating. Sometimes she's known as Rebecca, sometimes Peggy, or Eleanor, depending on her whimsy of the week. She's feisty, forthright, a leader of her group of friends and apparently, a person who finds things. The author writes as a 10-year-old very successfully!
On a beautiful English summer day in 1962, our heroine finds a wooden shield in a "beck" or creek. (I didn’t know what a beck is so checked it in Webster's. It's a British word first used in the 14th century – how appropriate.) The shield is old and Rebecca/Peggy/Eleanor wants to examine it more closely at home in the family garage. While doing so, a knight in armour, speaking old English, suddenly appears. This knight, Sir Kay, is aware that he is in a different time – "I know we are in the wrong time for me, but the right time for you…..I was waiting for you…..My Lady!" The knight and our heroine seamlessly travel from the 1960's back to 1340 and so the exciting adventure escalates. The shield (Sir Kay's) and what it contains are important to the security of the realm. She becomes friends with 10-year-old Edward, the future Black Prince.
The author evokes 14th century England by the use of language, clothes, tapestries, the rushes on the floors and the ancient weaponry. Rebecca/Peggy/Eleanor finds herself dressed in the style of medieval times in "a long, pale blue wool dress....with gold buttons and braiding."
The scenario is creative, the action fast paced and well written. This is Book 1 so more time travel and historical fiction is in store for readers - something to anticipate!
I highly recommend this MG book for young teens and adults alike. You won't be disappointed.
Disclosure: Thanks to Rachel Gilbey from Authoright Marketing & Publicity for sending me this book for review. I was not compensated in any other way, nor told how to rate or review this product.
Originally heralding from the North of England, C.J Bentley has travelled extensively and enjoyed living in a variety of countries across the world from Dubai to Doha, Qatar and now the countryside in the South of France. A background in teaching and childcare she has always enjoyed creating adventure short stories. However, it was when she became a grandma and with her grandchildren growing up that she discovered that books seemed to contain only stories of vampires, zombies and farts that she decided seriously to take matters into her own hands and put pen to paper which today she calls The Finder Series.
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