The Perilous Gard by Elizabeth Marie Pope

This book was so good!!! I feel like I start every second post with that sentence, but oh well. 🙂 I can’t help it if I keep finding all these wicked books! I can’t believe I didn’t read this one when I was younger. I would have LOVED it.

Kate is a lady in waiting (? or something? I am not too great at paying attention to courtly plot stuff) for the Queen’s sister in exile (Queen Mary Tudor, I believe), along with her sister Alicia. When Alicia makes a blunder, it is Kate who is sent away to the Perilous Gard (apparently a Gard is a castle); so called because it is rumoured to be in fairy territory.

This is a re-telling of the ballad of Tam Lin, apparently, though I was not really familiar with Tam Lin before I read the book. The Scottish ballad is about Tam Lin being rescued from the Queen of the faeries by his true love. I came across reviews of this book after reading Tithe by Holly Black, which is another book based on the ballad.

I thought this was a really great YA book, and very deserving of its Newbery honour. Pope‘s writing kept my attention as an adult and I highly recommend it. I am interested to read other re-tellings of the Tam Lin ballad. Time to start searching…


3 responses

  1. Pingback: Retro Friday: The Perilous Gard by Elizabeth Marie Pope « Chachic's Book Nook

  2. This was an awesome book. 😛

    I know that Patricia McKillip’s “Winter Rose” is another retelling of Tam Lin, but I haven’t been able to find it in a library or bookstore yet.

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