Igraine the Brave
Chicken House, an imprint Scholastic, 2007
Young Igraine lives in a wonky castle with her parents and older brother, all of whom work with magic. But all Igraine wants to do is be a knight. In this story she gets the chance and at the same time rescues her family, her home and a very sad knight.
• Igraine, 12 years old whose only focus is to be a knight, for her birthday her parents create a suit of armor that grows with her and is impenetrable. She lives with her family in the Pimpernel Castle.
• Albert, Igraine’s older brother who is still learning magic. So far the only foods he can conjure are hard biscuits and blue eggs (and they are blue all the way to the yolk!).
• The Sorrowful Knight of the Mount of Tears, aka Sir Urban of Wintergreen, the knight who has lost his mojo and whom Igraine helps him find it again.
• The Fair Melisande & Sir Lamorak the Wily (aka Sir Lamorak the Witty), parents to Igraine and Albert who inadvertently turn themselves into pigs during a magic spell!
• Sisyphus, the talking cat, who would prefer not to talk but does so because Igraine sprinkled some powder on him that Albert gave her.
• Osmund the Greedy (aka Osmund the Magnificent), the nephew of the Baroness of DarkRock (Igraine’s neighbor), and covets the Magic Books of Pimpernel Castle and will stop at nothing to get them.
• Rowan the Heartless (aka the Spiky Knight & Iron HedgeHog), Osumund’s very mean and cranky henchman.
Igraine is anticipating her birthday as the book opens and grumbling about leading a very ordinary life when what she really wants to do is to be out saving lives as a knight. She practices sword fighting daily with a leather dummy and sneaking off to DarkRock to ride the Baroness’ stallion, Lancelot. When her parents turn themselves into pigs, they send her to find a giant with red hair to fetch some magical ingredients to turn themselves back to rights. When she meets the giant, he introduces her to the Sorrowful Knight who then teaches her many things about being a knight. In the meantime, Osmund gets rid of the Baroness (although we don’t know how until the very end) and starts his assault on Pimpernel Castle. The Magic Books that Igraine’s parents use are very powerful and he wants to increase his own magical abilities. When Igraine and Sorrowful return, together they save day – and her parents!!!
As usual, Cornelia Funke has turned in another fun book! It is lively, funny and sweet. I really liked Igraine – she was brave and feisty and impertinent and loyal; all those things cats really like about ourselves, she embodied. This will definitely be a reread. We read this book as a part of the Summer Reading Challenge, 2015, located on the Bingo board under the category: Read a Bestselling Book. We stretched it a bit by saying the book was by a Bestselling Author!
Rating: 4 out of 5 paws for having a talking cat!!!
Other books by Cornelia Funke!