Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Awesome Books - Igraine the Brave by Cornelia Funke

I have a little girl who loves to play outside, get muddy, and hang from anything she can and was a knight for Halloween two years ago. I think she'll love this book, but first I bought this book for my little boy. And he loved it! 

Igraine is an ordinary girl who loves an adventure. Though she comes from a family of magicians (Mom, Dad, and older brother Albert who is a magician-in-training) living in an old, crumbling castle named Pimpernel, she dreams of becoming an accomplished knight. It's her life long (all twelve years of it) dream, but when all she has is her great-grandfather's old  chain mail and sparring some enchanted opponents, it seems like a hopeless dream.

Life is boring at the castle. Nothing exciting happens there. In fact, nothing exciting has happened since she was born. Just before she turned twelve, an accident with magic spells turns her parents into pigs, Osmund, the nephew of their next door neighbor, plans to invade their castle, and take her parents' magical singing books. Osmund wants the books so that he could overthrow the king.

Lucky for the inhabitant of the Pimpernel Castle, Igraine's parents gave her a new suit of armor with a helmet for her 12th birthday, and she's ready to fight and protect her family and home. 

Igraine and Albert want to turn their parents back to human form, but they are missing some key ingredients that make up the potion. They have to find a way to hold on to the castle and find the missing ingredients.

Albert defends the castle against Osmund while Igraine goes in search of the missing ingredients. Ultimately, she finds the missing ingredients and with the help of Sorrowful Knight of the Mount of Tears, she ends the siege of the Pimpernel Castle. He also taught her about the rules of chivalry, and she was on the road of becoming a real knight.

This book is filled with fantastic magical, whimsical details such as a talking cat (with the help of some magical powder), a giant, a Sorrowful Knight, a henchman named Spiky Knight, etc. But, best of all, it reminds us that we could do anything we set our minds to accomplish, and always follow our dreams, no matter how foolish they seem at times.