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Gatty's Tale [Kindle Edition]

Kevin Crossley-Holland
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £7.99
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Book Description

Of all the characters in THE SEEING STONE and AT THE CROSSING-PLACES, it is Gatty the village girl - steadfast, forthright, innocent and wise - who has won the hearts of readers. This is her story.

Gatty, who has never been further than her own village, is picked by Lady Gwyneth of Ewloe to join the band of pilgrims accompanying her to Jerusalem. The journey is fraught with danger and uncertainty, but opens Gatty's eyes to new wonders and transforms her. A joyful, heartrending, triumphant novel, packed with incident, teeming with characters, and a long-awaited treat for the many readers who want to know what happened to Gatty after the Arthur trilogy.

This ambitious novel creates a magnificently vivid and realistic picture of life and times in the Europe of 1202.

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Product Description


Teenage girls (and younger) will enjoy GATTY'S TALE by Kevin Crossley-Holland as Gatty, a character from Crossley-Holland's brilliant Arthur trilogy, sets off on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem with her new mistress and seven other companions¿.The language is gorgeous, the sweep of the story magnificent and the reader, Claudia Renton, is a talent, giving a different voice to a large number of characters - and her singing is a joy! (Kati Nicholl DAILY EXPRESS)

an adventure fraught with perils and a rich character portrait in the Chaucerian tradition. Claudia Renton shares with Gatty "the voice of an angel" and, having trained as a singer, understands how the author, a poet and librettist himself, aims to fit the sound of his words to the emotion of a scene. (Carole Mansur DAILY TELEGRAPH)

Book Description

The magnificent picaresque story of a medieval pilgrimage. Abridged edition.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 799 KB
  • Print Length: 404 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1842555707
  • Publisher: Orion Children's Books; New Ed edition (23 May 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #225,895 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Kevin Crossley-Holland's Arthur trilogy was translated into 25 languages, and has sold well over one million copies worldwide. He is a poet, historical novelist for children and authority on traditional tale who has presented many BBC radio programmes and is a frequent speaker at schools and libraries. He is the President of the School Library Association, an Honorary Fellow of St Edmund Hall, Oxford, a patron of the Society of Storytelling, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. His memoir of childhood, The Hidden Roads, was published in 2009.

Bracelet of Bones, the first of his Viking Sagas, was published in 2011 and the second book in the series, Scramasax, in 2012.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I Really Enjoyed It! 25 Jan. 2009
A Kid's Review
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Ok, so it may not be for everyone, but I loved it and couldn't put it down. We had to read it for English, and many people were groaning and grumbling about what a boring book it was, even though they hadn't even read the first page.

Gatty, a 'on the spur of the moment' girl has to leave her home of Caldicot, and travel to Wales where she and 8 other people go on a pilgrim to Jerusulem. That might not sound exciting but it is a really gripping and quite a tear jerking book that is descriptive, yet has a lot of adventure. It can be hard to understand what some of the words mean but after I had finished the book I came across a glossary of words at the back, explaining what all the words meant. It is a truly wonderful medieval tale, a tale that you won't want to finish.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Utterly Beautiful.. 29 April 2008
I have read the Arthur trilogy, and while i don't think it's absolutely necessary to have read them before this book, you will most certainly get more from Gatty's Tale if you have. Even if it is just for the small references to The Seeing Stone or At the Crossing Places which brought a smile to my face remembering reading them.
Gatty is the most wonderful heroine, she's innocent but strong, she's ignorant but sharp and bright and really very funny. Not many books bring a tear to this English student's eyes, but Gatty's Tale brought on more than a few! The story is beautifully told, and the reader becomes so attached to Gatty and her fellow pilgrims as they trek to Jerusalem. I felt as if i'd been on the journey with them, and the simple sentances and imagery is magical and effective. By the end, i didn't want to say goodbye to Gatty and the loyal Snout, not to mention all the characters at Caldicot.
This is one of my favourite books, a beautiful and accurate portrayal of medieval life but to get the most out of it, read the Arthur trilogy first, which is just as good, for only then can you reminisce wistfully with Gatty about Arthur and Pip, which when read originally, you wouldn't expect to find that image where it would eventually stay for centuries and more.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gatty's Tale 1 April 2011
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I bought this book because I had read two of the Arthur trilogy and was about to buy the third. Although not part of the trilogy (obviously) it's about Gatty, who is a character in the three books, and Arthur's friend. The Arthur trilogy was a good read, and I was expecting Gatty's Tale to be of a similar standard - WRONG - it's so much better it's almost as if it's been written by someone else! It's a fabulous read, a really interesting and exciting story, and the kind of book you want to keep reading and not put down until you get to the end. I won't spoil the story for anyone who is trying to decide whether to buy the book or not, however if you are in any doubt BUY IT - you won't be disappointed.Gatty's Tale
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Shortlisted for the 2008 Carnegie Medal, "Gatty's Tale" is Kevin Crossley-Holland's follow-up to his highly successful Arthur trilogy. Set in 1203, it picks up where "King of the Middle March" ended. This time, however, the focus of attention switches to the eponymous Gatty, a strong-minded but resourceful and loyal field-girl from the manor of Caldicot on the Welsh Marches, who joins a party of pilgrims on a journey to the holy city of Jerusalem. On the way - amidst encounters with thieves, monks, brigands and knights - the pilgrims try to discover not just each other but also themselves.

The story is a slow-burner, to be sure: there is little plot to speak of, but rather a series of challenges for Gatty and her companions to overcome. But then this a novel less concerned with events than it is with the experience of life in the thirteenth century. Crossley-Holland fills his landscapes with a host of interesting characters from all walks of life, from Nakin the merchant who acts as negotiator for the pilgrims on their journey, to the self-serving and desperate landowner Sir Umberto del Malaxa, and Sir Faramond, an aged one-time crusader now settled in Palestine with his Saracen wife. Gatty's world, much like our own, is often confusing and full of contradictions, but it is precisely this diversity of cultures and traditions which brings the narrative to life.

Having said that, it's not clear exactly what age group the novel is aimed at. The story often refers back to events in the Arthur trilogy, with the result that it's difficult to read "Gatty's Tale" as a standalone novel.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Re-enchants the Middle Ages 18 May 2010
Format:Mass Market Paperback
It's fashionable nowadays, in both children's and adult fiction, to present the Middle Ages as sordid, brutal and filthy, writing from a cynical viewpoint that has no sympathy with medieval ideas and attributes no transcendant value to anything. A typical recent example is Philip Reeves's 'Here Lies Arthur', so sordid and depressing that it was a dead cert. for the Carnegie Medal.

Crossley-Holland has gone all the other way. Without being starry-eyed, he presents medieval people as they saw themselves: pilgrims through a harsh world, with their eyes fixed on a heaven that was utterly real. Nobody can understand the western Middle Ages if they don't have an understanding of, and sympathy with, medieval Christianity, and yet most modern authors are utterly unable to espouse that viewpoint: their little minds shrivel at the prospect of faith. C-H isn't unrealistic about the contradictions of medieval thinking (so unlike our own, ha ha.) There's a wonderful moment, for example, when the heroine and the cook Snout, her companion, in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, are offered a saint's toe-bone as a holy relic: 'Snout had a careful look at the relic. "That's not a toe," he said. 'It's part of a trotter. I've cooked hundreds."' Gatty is indignant, but the episode does nothing to dent her awe at being at the place of the Crucifixion. And that's how it must have been.

The only reason I don't give this five stars is the way the author presents Gatty herself. She's so unctuously perfect, with her golden hair and her simper and her pretty voice and intelligence and elegantly unconvincing rustic dialect, that I quite frequently wished I could give her a good smack in the mouth. Actually, under the slush she's quite an attractive character, but the author has grossly over-written her.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars A joyful, tear-jerking book.
A joyful, tear-jerking book.
Incredible! Once more Kevin Crossly-Holland makes a superb creation! Read more
Published on 13 July 2012 by Chevening Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding - an emotional, physical and spiritual adventure
I think it is better to have read the Arthur novels first, as it puts the adventure into context and makes the emotional impact so much greater and more satisfying. Read more
Published on 14 Dec. 2010 by Mr. M. Jones
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good for boys as previous 'Arthur' stories
I (as their mum) liked this story - and the narrator tells it beautifully - but my boys (aged 12 and 10) were definitely less impressed than they had been with the other Arthur... Read more
Published on 5 April 2010 by Tessa Gunn
5.0 out of 5 stars Good
The year us 1209, none compainons set out from Wales on a great pilgrimage across Europe to Jerusalem.Not all of them will come home. Read more
Published on 3 Sept. 2009
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful story!
This has to be one of my favorite books! A beautifully thought out and written story, great characters and description. Simple but also with deep undertones. Read more
Published on 15 April 2009 by Lucy
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Enjoyable
Paraphrased from the back blurb on the paperback:
'In the year 1203, nine companions set out from Wales on a great pilgrimage across Europe to Jerusalem. Read more
Published on 30 Jan. 2009 by Hamstead
1.0 out of 5 stars What a load of cobblers !
My god this book is dull. Maybe I'm thick (I'm not) but I just don't get it - everyone raves at this book but is nobody going to state the bl**ding obvious ? Read more
Published on 9 Nov. 2008 by Hair Bear
1.0 out of 5 stars Boring!
This is a terrible book and is not recomended for anyone, it was recomended for the carnegi award and I don't see why. Read more
Published on 9 Oct. 2008 by Odo
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing
Amazing! I loved the arthur trilogy and was eager for more so I was thrilled to find out about "Gatty's Tale". Read more
Published on 17 Sept. 2008
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