Thursday, February 21, 2008

Prydain Chronicles Pt. One

The Prydain Chronicles
by Lloyd Alexander
The Book of Three

Lloyd Alexander’s classic series for the young is a fantasy set in the believable medieval. Welsh-like world of Prydain, To Taran, an Assistant Pig Keeper, everyday life seems dull and mundane. The series begins at the Book of Three, with Taran mucking out the stalls of the oracular pig Hen Wen. He, like many a young boy, longs to have grand adventures and become a larger than life hero. Accusing his guardians Dallben and Coll of trying to stifle his true abilities, Taran feels life at Caer Dallben is rather useless and not at all in the manner worthy of following his hero, Prince Gwydion. Dallben is more concerned with the strange happenings caused by the arrival of the Horned King and wonders what intrigues the Lord of Death, Arawn is now plotting.
In the midst of their worries, events transpire that cause Taran to impulsively leave Caer Dallben and begin a journey searching for his beloved Hen Wen. A journey which not only brings into Taran’s life new friends, and new challenges that cause Taran to grow towards being a real hero - not of what he imagined - but one that can truly be admired. Taran comes face to face with his idol, Prince Gwydion and learns that there is still much more to learn about the world. As Taran’s journey continues, he discovers the world contains evil and good, and he must make choices that concern more than his own interests. His decisions, in fact, may decide the fate of Prydain’s future happiness.
Adding to the story is the vibrant nature of Eilonwy, a talkative, young enchantress; the exaggeration of Fflewddur Fflam, a wandering bard; and the panicky Gurgi, the insatiable man/hound, all of whom alternatively annoy and aid Taran. Taran stumbles through his journey, meets legends, learns the true strength of friendship, finds out the wisdom of listening to others, and feels the heartache of loss. Taran learns that the simplicity of home is to be desired after all, more than all the heroics and adventures that the world can offer and returns to Caer Dallben with his new friends, a wiser, older, and much beloved character.

More to come . . .

By Lady Tinidril

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