For those that have followed the progress of my personal challenge in reading the Top 100 Children’s Books (as published by Betsy at A Fuse #8 Production), you will remember that I did not finish #88 The High King. Why? you ask. Because it is the fifth book in the Chronicles of Prydain and there were way too many characters to keep track of having not read the first four books in the series. However, I did resolve to give the series another chance after reading #82 The Book of Three. Today, having finished the first book in the series in a matter of a few hours, I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised.
While the fantasy genre is not my favorite, I found the adaptations from Welsh mythology to be fascinating. The novel was not all heroism, adventure and death. My favorite character, Eilonwy, is full of sarcasm and silliness. The main character, Taran, is faced with some decisions he is not capable of making and the development of his character is wonderful to the end. Still a few too many characters to keep track of, but it was a lot easier to follow them when starting from the beginning. Unfortunately, I am still torn in my decision to continue reading the series. What do you think, my faithful readers? Finish the series or rest in the feeling of enjoying the first book? I am leaving the decision up to you.
by Lloyd Alexander
Originally published in 1964