The Last Grail Keeper

The Last Grail Keeper

by Pamela Smith Hill

Editorial Reviews

Swirling amber and purple lights, voices murmuring, dragons and mythical creatures circling a black void�these phenomena are becoming daily occurrences for sixteen-year-old Felicity Jones, ever since her archaeologist mother dragged her to Glastonbury, England. Felicity just wants to be home studying for her driver's license. She even could put up with sometimes knowing what is going to happen ahead of time. These increasingly frightening episodes seem related somehow to the dig at Glastonbury Tor and the secret meaning that had been discovered there. It really goes over the top the night Morgan le Fay visits Felicity's bedroom, talking about the Holy Grail, Mordred, and Grail Keepers. Even the internship in London at a major advertising firm does not make things better for her. The president of the firm turns out to be the modern day Mordred. Events begin to spiral when Felicity accepts that she is the last Grail Keeper and the only one who can return the newly found Grail to King Arthur's time. The extensive bibliography that follows this beautifully written tale speaks to the depth of research that went into its writing. The large and bold typeface might cause a reader to think that this book is going to be an easy read. One soon discovers, however, that the depth of knowledge and vocabulary required for this book make it one for older middle and junior high readers. Any student who enjoys time travel, fantasy, or Arthurian legend will consume this story quickly and be sorry to see it end. Biblio. VOYA CODES: 4Q 4P M J (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; Broad general YA appeal; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9). 2001,Holiday House,
— Susan Allen
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 6-8-This is a complicated but absorbing tale of a teen with ESP who may be a Grail Keeper from the time of King Arthur. Felicity Jones is in England with her mother, who is on sabbatical to pursue intensive research into the Arthurian legend. There is speculation that Glastonbury Tor might really be Avalon, where Arthur was taken to die. In a conversational tone and with the acknowledgment that her experiences might be hard to believe, Felicity tells her strange adventure with time travel and how she learns of her powers from Morgan le Fey. The modern teen is a believable character, and her amazement at the discovery of her special talents rings true. However, sometimes the shifts between the present and the past and the interactions with characters from the Arthurian legends are contrived and confusing. A secure familiarity with the tales will make the novel more accessible. Hill tries to parallel characters in the present with those from the legend as, for example, the present-day evil Mordraut carries out the same mission to destroy goodness as Mordred does. This story will appeal mainly to fans of fantasy and Arthurian legend.-Renee Steinberg, Fieldstone Middle School, Montvale, NJ Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
With a new twist on the Arthurian legend, this story incorporates old tales, a contemporary setting, and a mother and daughter pair who find themselves inexplicably interested in the lost world of Avalon. Just as strange occurrences are taking place at her mother's archaeological dig, Felicity Jones is singled out, by Morgan Le Fay no less, as the last in a long line of women "grail keepers" who have been entrusted with protecting the sacred cauldron-the fountain of creativity, imagination, and art. Her reaction to the news, as well as her unwanted second sight, is typical teenage disbelief and annoyance, both of which cause a lot of trouble for her later. Hill (A Voice from the Border, 1998, etc.) has obviously studied the Avalon legends extensively, but sometimes has a difficult time translating her own wealth of knowledge to the reader. The beginning is muddied and somewhat confusing, too much bouncing between scenes and nonexistent transitions. However, the story sorts itself out by the end and readers will begin to understand how everything fits together and may even find themselves wanting to read it again. (Fiction. 11-14)

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Product Details

Holiday House, Inc.
Publication date:
Edition description:
1 ED
Product dimensions:
5.80(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range:
12 - 14 Years

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