The Ballad of Sir Dinadan

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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2003 - Juvenile Fiction - 245 pages

Young Dinadan has no wish to joust or quest or save damsels in distress or do any of the knightly things expected of him. He'd rather be a minstrel, playing his rebec and writing ballads. But he was born to be a knight, and knights, of course, have adventures.

So after his father forces his knighthood upon him, he wanders toward King Arthur's court, in the company of a misguided young Welsh lad named Culloch. There Dinadan meets Sir Kai and Sir Bedivere, and the three find themselves accompanying Culloch on the worst sort of quest. Along the way, Dinadan writes his own ballads, singing of honor, bravery, loyalty, and courtly love--and becomes a player in the pathetic love story of Tristram and Iseult. He meets the Moorish knight Palomides, the clever but often exasperating Lady Brangienne, and an elvin musician named Sylvanus, along with an unusual collection of recreant knights and dimwitted defenders of chivalry. He learns that while minstrels sing of spectacular heroic deeds, honor is often found in simpler, quieter ways.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - themulhern - LibraryThing

Good work by Gerald Morris. The satirical takes on two legends about lovers, both Tristram and Isolde and Culloch and Olwen are fun. This fits in nicely with Dinadan's own avoidance of romance in any form. Read full review

THE BALLAD OF SIR DINADAN

User Review  - Kirkus

Fans of The Squire's Tale (1998) and its sequels will welcome this new installment in the humorous take on the King Arthur legends. With main characters varying from book to book, this one introduces ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

PRELUDE
11
THE NOBLE TALE OF SIR DINADAN
24
TWO TALES OF SIR MARHAULT
41
SIR TRISTRAM
65
QUESTING
85
THE SHADOW OF THE WOODS
109
THE MOOR THE MORONS
134
THE HORN OF IGRAINE
163
THE BALLAD OF SIR PALOMIDES
178
THE LYRE
198
LOVE SONGS
210
A SONG FOR A LADY
229
THE SINGERS OF TALES
243
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About the author (2003)

When Gerald Morris was in fifth grade he loved Greek and Norse mythology and before long was retelling the stories to his younger sister and then to neighborhood kids. He began carrying a notebook in which he kept some of the details related to the different stories. The joy he found in retelling those myths continued when he discovered other stories.

According to Gerald Morris, “I never lost my love of retelling the old stories. When I found Arthurian literature, years later, I knew at once that I wanted to retell those grand tales. So I pulled out my notebook . . . I retell the tales, peopling them with characters that I at least find easier to recognize, and let the magic of the Arthurian tradition go where it will.”

Gerald Morris lives in Wausau, Wisconsin, with his wife and their three children. In addition to writing he serves as a minister in a church.

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