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The Perilous Gard

The Perilous Gard

4.9 17
by Richard J. Cuffari

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In 1558, while exiled by Queen Mary Tudor to a remote castle known as Perilous Gard, young Kate Sutton becomes involved in a series of mysterious events that lead her to an underground world peopled by Fairy Folk—whose customs are even older than the Druids’ and include human sacrifice.


In 1558, while exiled by Queen Mary Tudor to a remote castle known as Perilous Gard, young Kate Sutton becomes involved in a series of mysterious events that lead her to an underground world peopled by Fairy Folk—whose customs are even older than the Druids’ and include human sacrifice.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
This reissue of a 1975 Newbery Honor Book filled with myth, magic and mystery should appeal to fans of Harry Potter. In this tale set in 1558, Katherine Sutton, an attendant to Princess Elizabeth, is banished through no fault of her own to a remote and fearsome castle, Perilous Gard. In this isolated spot, she can't help investigating the mysterious happenings no one will talk about. When she discovers that fairies guard the profitable magic well at Perilous Gard, she ends up a prisoner in the underground fairyland. The Queen of the Fairies is impressed with Kate's courage, so allows her special privileges when she completes her menial chores. As Kate explores this strange world, she discovers that her friend, Christopher, is imprisoned there. He is being prepared as the human sacrifice the fairies must offer to maintain their power. She vows to save him and uses all her strength and ingenuity to succeed. This ends, as do most good fairy tales, with the heroine living happily ever after. Cleverly written descriptions and dialog bring the Tudor times to life. For example, the author describes Kate's ancestor who founded the family fortunes thus—"Sir Giles had started life as a common merchant seaman (the malicious rumor that he had been a pirate was almost universally discredited), and though in the end he had grown rich and died knighted, it was not for his grace or good looks." 2001 (orig. 1974), Houghton Mifflin, $5.95. Ages 9 to 12. Reviewer: Janet Crane Barley<%ISBN%>0618150730

Product Details

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.12(w) x 7.62(h) x 0.71(d)
1020L (what's this?)
Age Range:
10 - 12 Years

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The Perilous Gard 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
MissPrint More than 1 year ago
England, 1558. Kate Sutton is serving as lady-in-waiting to Princess Elizabeth when a disastrous letter from Kate's sister changes everything. Exiled by Queen Mary Tudor, Kate is sent to a distant castle called the Perilous Gard. The Perilous Gard and the surrounding Elvenwood are steeped in mystery. Villagers fear the inhabitants of the castle and the castle staff refuse to explain why to Kate. The master of the castle, Sir Geoffrey Heron, offers even less in the way of answers as he is keen to be as far from the Gard as often as possible. Sir Geoffrey's brooding brother, Christopher, soon becomes Kate's unlikely source for information. As Kate learns more about the castle and surrounding grounds, she begins to realize the Perilous Gard is hiding a secret--one that could change Christopher's life. But secrets are dangerous things and trying to get to the truth surrounding her new home could lead to things far worse for Kate than mere exile in The Perilous Gard (1974) by Elizabeth Marie Pope. The Perilous Gard was a Newbery Honor title in 1975. It is a retelling of Tam Lin. The Perilous Gard is a perfect blend of historical fiction and fantasy. Kate's story is very grounded in the reality of life in 1558 England, a period that Pope brings to life with carefully detailed prose and obviously thorough research. The story of Tam Lin is turned on its head here as fairies and Druid customs converge in a story of secrets, peril and human sacrifice. Kate is an excellent heroine. She is pragmatic, stubborn and loyal to a fault. She refuses to let circumstances (or even dangerous fairies) stop her from doing what is necessary. She is also one of the most level-headed characters you are likely to meet. Tam Lin, of course, centers heavily on a love story as a maiden tries to save her lover from the fairies who have laid claim to him. While there is still romance here, it is refreshingly honest and realistic. Kate and Christopher are rash and often quite thoughtless. At first they do not understand let alone like each other. Yes during unexpected time together, it becomes obvious that there might be (maybe should be) more to their relationship as this unlikely pair becomes fast friends. It's easy to think that a book from 1974--an arguable classic--would feel stale or stilted. Instead The Perilous Gard writing draws readers in and creates an all-consuming story that is an absolute delight. Highly recommended for readers who enjoy historical fiction, fantasy and fairy tale retellings, this book also has strong crossover potential for readers of all ages. Possible Pairings: The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black, Tam Lin by Pamela Dean, Entwined by Heather Dixon, Princess of the Midnight Ball by Jessica Day George, Fire and Hemlock by Diana Wynne Jones, Thomas the Rhymer by Ellen Kushner, Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine, Wildwood Dancing by Juliet Marillier, The Glass Casket by Templeman McCormick,The Mirk and Midnight Hour by Jane Nickerson, A Well-Timed Enchantment by Vivian Vande Velde, Sorcery and Cecelia by Patricia C. Wrede and Caroline Stevemer, Extraordinary by Nancy Werlin, Illusions of Fate by Kiersten White, The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff, Dust Girl by Sarah Zettel
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Guest More than 1 year ago
An excellent book for all ages. It's about a girl who goes to live in a town with a un avoidable secret. She soon finds herself wrapped up in a situation that is way over her head. But even in one of the most wreached of places she must keep her ground and find her way.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Awesome, awesome, awesome if you love stories of the supernatural, especially ones involving fairies and Elizabethan culture. Pope is such a great author! If you haven't read this book-you need to immediately!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is one of my favorite books of all time. I am an avid book reader and have read hundreds of books, this by far being in the Top 3 of my list. It is a fast paced, exciting and romantic read, a perfect book to curl up on the couch with. I discovered this book around last year at my local bookstore and i must've read it at least 20 times sinse then because it nevers gets tiring. When I say it, I mean it, you really need to read this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I absolutely loved this book. It has so many twists and turns that you never know what's going to happen. I definitely give it five stars!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Teh Perilous Gard was recomended for me by some friends and i loved it! Now I tell my friends to read it and can't wait to get a copy. I read it at least three times when i got it from the library. Pope is able to combine two different worlds and make them work. The deatails she puts in stay with you, and everything is so belivable. I recomend this book for Meddling Pumpkin Heads everywhere!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is one of the best that I have ever read. Anyone who has the least bit of imagination will be enthralled. It is a book that reaches to the hearts of everyone of all ages.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This has been my favorite book since childhood, and it really isn't a childs book I have re-read it at least a dozen times since thoes original first days at 7 or 8 and I'd advise anyone from any age group to enjoy it as well!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is just about one of the best "faerie" books I have ever read. It's not pretty and fluffy, it's dark and faintly dangerous and foreboding. There aren't any rainbow wings here, this book is about a people trying to keep their culture and their customs, as bloodthirsty and macabre as they may seem to us. Humans are merely getting in the way. I read this about 15 years ago at my local library and was beside myself to see it in my bookstore last year. Any faerie fan should enjoy this with very few reservations.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought The Perilous Gard was a great book! I coundn't seem to make myself put it down. I think that Elizabeth Marie Pope is a wonderful author and I can't wait to read some of her other works! Definitely read it!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is one of the best books i have read! before i started reading it i thought it wasn't going to be a great book. but i was definatley wrong!!! i finished in one day!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought this book was really great! I got it to read at B. DAlton for my sister's swim meet and I read it in a whole day!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was one of the best books I've ever read in my entire life! Fantastic detail, great book! Elizabeth Marie Pope is certainly a fabulous writer and I look forward to reading other books written by her.