Sir Bentley and Holbrook Court
post written by Esther Filbrun
Title: Sir Bentley and Holbrook Court
Author: Chuck Black
Series: The Knights of Arrethtrae series, book 2
Major Themes: Allegories
Synopsis: As Sir Bentley discovers the intense hatred between the knights he knows and the Followers of the Prince—those who defend him even if they have to go to prison afterward—can he find justice not only in his life, but a true purpose to fulfill as well?
Sir Bentley and Holbrook Court may not be one of our family’s most favorite books in the series (as my brother disgustedly put it, “it’s the classic fairy tale—brave knight saves princess, and everyone is happy!”), but it’s another enjoyable addition to the tales author Chuck Black has told over the years. I must qualify that first statement, though—as we neared the end of the book, my brothers didn’t want me to stop reading. We read the final quarter in about a day, maybe two! Personally, I loved the adventure and symbolism this story contained. So each to his own, I guess.
Sir Bentley, newly knighted into the order of the Noble Knights, finds his new role disturbing as he discovers the deep enmity between the men he associates with and the Followers. He is especially troubled when the Followers protect him and his fellow knights against a fierce enemy, and his leader imprisons them anyway. Something isn’t right, but what should he do? As he becomes more and more disillusioned with the ideal he has always associated with the Noble Knights, he begins to search for new meaning—and in the process meets some of the illegal Followers. As his life is turned upside-down by what they show him, can he possibly learn to accept a new—and the truly only rightful—leader he is shown in the Prince? And when he discovers a village full of suffering because of a gain-seeking lord, is there any way he can free the people and bring about a peace like they haven’t known in years?
Interwoven with a semi-fairy tale and allegory is the thread of what money can do to us. Does that hold us captive? Is that what we serve, something that will eventually destroy our lives and possibly the lives of those around us? Sir Bentley and Holbrook Court, although possibly not one of the better-written stories in this series, is still a good reminder to examine our priorities. It’s also a good adventure story, at least for parts of the tale (the beginning is a tad slow). In all, I think most boys and girls would love the Christian themes and challenges the characters face throughout the story.
WARNING: Overall, there is some violence (sword fighting and sometimes killing) throughout the story. On pages 108 and 111 a man is killed, two people are killed on page 112 as well as wounds being mentioned Chapter 18 had pretty intense fighting. In chapter 20 there is a knife against a man’s throat and someone is hanged (quite graphic). Chapters 21 and 22 also have more fighting and people being killed.
Reading Independently—Ages 12 – 15, 15 and Above
Links to buy Sir Bentley and Holbrook Court:
AbeBooks: View Choices on AbeBooks.com
Book Depository: Paperback