In this fairy tale, a young knight is considered the finest in his village. He is strong, can run fast, solves puzzles, and shows kindness to others. So when the King announces a contest to determine who will be called prince of the land, many are certain he will win. But when the young knight sees his competition, he's not so sure. He learns one knight is able to outrun a horse, another is strong enough to carry a horse under each arm, and another is smart enough to solve any puzzle. The young knight tries to practice each of these feats, but admits to his father he's not the fastest, strongest, or smartest knight in the land. His father always replies with words of wisdom about God giving him what he needs.
At last, the day of the contest arrives. The first test is a race, and while all the other knights cheat and find a shorter route, the young knight follows the rules - and comes in last. The next test is to see how many logs each knight can carry. The other knights find hollow logs, so they can carry more, but the young knight carries a solid log - and can only carry one. The final test is a puzzle. The other knights pay a smart man in the village to give them the answer, but the young knight figures out the problem himself, although his answer comes in last.
The King, however, is wise, and he discounts the other knights because they are dishonest. He titles the young knight prince.
"So the brave young knight of the west village became prince and, with God's help, ruled the kingdom with character, kindness, and truth."
What I Like: Gabrielle Grimard's illustrations are gorgeous; the cover of the book really doesn't do them justice. They are full of rich colors and life, adding a great deal to Kingsbury's well written tale. And for parents who long to raise children of character in a world where people of good character are so hard to find, this book is a gentle and fun way of showing that it's always better to live God's way. The Brave Young Knight is an excellent book for either boys or girls.
What I Dislike: Nothing
Overall Rating: Excellent.
Age Appeal: 4 to 8
Publishing Info: Zonderkidz, 2011; ISBN: 978-0310716457; hardback, 40 pgs., $4.99.
Buy Now at Amazon.com for $10.87
OR buy at ChristianBook.com for $10.49
Special Info: To see illustrations from this book, and to watch Karen Kingsbury discuss it, visit the author's website.