The Telling Pool

The Telling Pool

4.6 20
by David Clement-Davies, Rand Huebsch

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Editorial Reviews

Experience magic, deceit, trust, love, and friendship as Rhodri seeks his destiny to save King Richard and his land from a long-ago curse that was cast by an evil enchantress, Homeria, when Guinevere and Sir Lancelot betrayed King Arthur. Homeria ensnares both Rhodri and his father in her own quest to possess Excalibur, Arthur's fabled sword. Rhodri encounters Wiccan ideas and pagan practices that challenge his beliefs about Christianity, but is strengthened through visions and messages received by gazing into a magical pool. Readers will be swept up by the adventures that lead to Rhodri's discovery of his identity. Characters are well developed, especially Rhodri, and readers will relate to the many emotions portrayed. Some sections, especially those involving Rhodri's daily life, seem over-long and distracting. While there are many Arthurian novels available, this one incorporates interesting and unusual approaches to the legend, making it an enjoyable read for mature genre fans. 2005, Amulet Books, 362 pp., Ages young adult.
—Susan Gapp
Children's Literature
Rhodri Falcon leads an ordinary life in medieval Wales. His father is a master falconer and Rhodri helps him with the birds. One day Rhodri meets a blind smith who tells him about the Telling Pool, where one can see many secrets. Rhodri puts this pool out of his mind until his father goes to fight in the Holy Lands. When Rhodri meets the smith again, Tantallon shows him how to use the Telling Pool. While Rhodri is overjoyed to see his father alive, he is soon disappointed to find that his father betrayed his mother while away. When Rhodri's father returns, he is much changed and is now an angry and violent person. The only way to save him is for Rhodri to find the woman who bewitched his father. This rich story uses both historical events and Arthurian legend as a backdrop, but neither the history nor the legend ever overwhelms the well-crafted plot and characters Clement-Davies has created. 2006, Amulet Books, Ages 12 up.
—Amie Rose Rotruck
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 7-10-The late 12th century in England brought anguish to a divided land as King Richard led many of the ablest men on the quixotic and dangerous journey known as the Third Crusade. Rhodri, the son of Owen, master falconer on a manor in the Welsh borderland, is left in charge when his much-admired father follows their overlord to the Holy Land. Interweaving this historical fiction with a liberal dose of Arthurian legend, Clement-Davies creates a rich mixture of themes and metaphors. Two archetypal figures vie for Rhodri's soul: Tantallon, a Merlin figure who teaches the boy to look for answers in an ancient, magical pool deep in the forest; and Homeira, an evil-hearted Morgana figure who entraps his returning father's heart. Descriptions of Owen's behavior after experiencing the Crusade will ring true with anyone familiar with posttraumatic-stress symptoms. Rhodri's journey through the countryside to free his father from Homeira's enchantment tests the boy's courage, though a subplot involving an ostracized Jew and his daughter tests readers' credulity. The descriptions of medieval falconry, life on the manor, and Rhodri's interactions with other boys are carefully delineated, but those not steeped in Arthurian legend may find themselves confused by the context of Tantallon's teachings and Homeira's treachery. On the other hand, that could spur them to read further. The power of old legends to effect children's lives is always an interesting theme, one that is more fully developed in Kevin Crossley-Holland's The Seeing Stone (2001), At the Crossing-Places (2002), and King of the Middle March (2004, all Scholastic).-Connie C. Rockman, Stratford Library Association, CT Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
In his newest ponderous, superficially mystical fantasy, Clement-Davies links the "betrayal" of Guinevere and Lancelot to the corruption of the Christian church in Albion, as well as the general rise in lawlessness brought on by Richard the Lion-Hearted's crusade and subsequent imprisonment. Raised by devoted parents, young Rhodri grows up with enough love in his heart to survive a climactic attempted seduction by Homeira, a transplanted Persian enchantress. This after many long sessions gazing into the titular magical pond, which is a sort of Wiccan History Channel where he not only learns that he's a descendant of that star-crossed Arthurian couple, but follows the adventures of his father, who has gone off to fight with Richard's army in the Holy Land, then later lose his heart (literally) to the aforesaid enchantress. Chucking in a malicious rival who skulks about overhearing every damaging conversation, a wise old hermit connected to a certain merlin (get it?), a cameo by Excalibur and stereotypical Jews and Gypsies, the author eventually winds his tale to a happy close in which Arthur's Sword of Peace cleaves Homeira's stony heart on Christmas Day, just as news of Richard's return arrives. No, it's not a send-up. Would that it were. (Fantasy. 11-13)

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Product Details

Abrams, Harry N., Inc.
Publication date:
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x 1.12(d)
870L (what's this?)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Meet the Author

David Clement-Davies is the author of three highly acclaimed and bestselling novels. His books have been called "intricately crafted" (The Boston Globe), "a hurtling ride" (Kirkus), and a "masterpiece" (Booklist). Young readers are equally enthralled: His and kid reviews number in the hundreds and include such praise as "an instant classic," "too cool for words," and "absolutely stunning." David travels extensively and has trekked across a desert, swam with dolphins, and skydived on assignment for various travel magazines. He lives in London.

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Telling Pool 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 20 reviews.
ladyhawke28 More than 1 year ago
This was the first book I've read by David Clement-Davies and I was impressed. The character development was good, the plot was exciting, and the way the author got to the end of the story was told at the right pace. I really enjoyed the falconry aspect of the book. You don't need to be involved in the sport to enjoy that part of the book. I love that the animals are part of the story and characters as well. I will definitely pick up one of this other books! If you enjoy science fiction or have an interest in the time that the Arthurian legend takes place or that legend itself, you will want to read this book!
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Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is the best book that I have ever read. It is crwling with excrusiating detail to every sentence in this 360 page book. I highly recomend this great book to any reader at a reasonable age who loves to read books that litteraly pull your heart out of the book. (Hint Hint, Someones heart really does get pulled out in this book.) Enjoy!
Guest More than 1 year ago
¿The Telling Pool¿ by David Clement is an excellent fantasy novel with an odd start but gets better as you read. This book takes place in the time after King Arthur¿s court. The story is about Rhodri¿s father, Owen, going to war for two years but when he comes back he has many outbursts due to an evil enchantress steeling his heart (literally). Now it is up to Rhodri to find his fathers heart and find the mythical sword Excalibur which all leads up to the biggest decision of his life¿ his father¿s life or his own. This book is told in third person with simple grammar. The characters talk with an olden tongue which is very interesting to read. Over all this is an excellent book that I would recommend to everyone.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The Telling Pool By: David Clement Davies The Telling Pool is about a 12 year old boy who meets a fortune teller that tells him he is going to be involved in a war and hat he is going to find The Telling Pool. Then he meets a blacksmith that tells him that he is going to follow the path of the deer. This book is a great book that involves a magical place and a little bit of the time when King Author lived. The reason why I liked this book is because it is a book about the sword Excalibur, and the title made me think it would be a great book. The Telling Pool takes place when King Author once lived but it is mostly after he died, in England. The major conflict is that Rhodri the main character is told his destiny is to be in the war. But when the news of the war is told to everyone, Rhodri wants to go and fight in the war with his dad, but he can¿t because his dad wants him to protect his mom. Rhodri looks into the Telling Pool and now he is 14 but when he finds out his dad is being held hostage and then he is released by the enchantress, he tries to help him. So, he disobeys Tantallon¿s rule about not touching the water, and he puts his hand and face in the water. Then his dad comes back home and he finds out the enchantress took his heart and leaves to find her and get it back. David Clement Davies style is mostly English from England But he has strange words like bach and cariad in his book, because I looked up bach and it didn¿t make sense, so I guess he gave them new meanings. People who like books with magic and fighting would love this book. They will find out books they probably like are books with fighting and magic.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Well, I know that this is going to be a new step for Clement-Davies, considering that he has only written from an animals' viewpoint. I like how he kept with his strongsuit, but I hope it has a completely different plot than both The Sight and Firebringer (they were closely related). I look forward to this new journey, and hope that the short 376 pages will satisfy the story.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Seemingly unlike all the other reviewers, I did not in fact like The Sight, and I never read The Firebringer. However, I greatly enjoyed this story. Perhaps it is my enduring love of King Arthur. Anyway, any fans of King Arthur legend are encouraged to try this out!
Guest More than 1 year ago
'The Telling Pool' definitely kept me interested. I lvoed the way it took the story with King Arthur and Excalibur/Mythirion and kind of twisted it to fit the storyline. It was a little diffeent than his other novels, in the sense that it was about a human and not an animal, though it did have a lot about falconry in it. Overall an excellent read, and recommended for David Clement-Davies fans!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was an enchanting book set in the Holy Wars that relates back to King Arthur, Guinevere, Merlin, and all the heroes and villains of Arthurian legend. The beginning may seem like it is unnecessary, but read on! In a chapter or two, you'll realize those chapters add depth to the story! Written by David Clement-Davies, the author of FIRE BRINGER and THE SIGHT, this book will keep you spellbound from start to finish. Just quit looking at the reviews and read it for yourself!
Guest More than 1 year ago
David Clement-Davies has pulled out yet another awsome book! It kept me reading until the end, and is a book I highly recommend.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Being a fan of the Sight and Fire Bringer, I was not dissapointed with Davied Clement-Davies newest book. Set in a slightly different way from his usual style, I still loved it, finding the characters just as lovable as Larka from the Sight. Somehow this book was different from his usual style but I still loved it and it was one of those books you can't put down.