17 October 2004

Rakkety Tam by Brian Jacques

Fiction. Hardback from the Penguin Group. Published 2004. Purchased at Methven's, Windsor, UK. (And at the just published price, no less. But, what else can you do but buy when your kids come running up to you on the High Street, eyes all aglow because of a book they've found? They know my soft spot.)

Brian Jacques has been a favourite of the kids for many years now. And, I'll have to admit he's been a favourite of mine as well. In reality the story lines never really vary much, but they are still enjoyable books. The world of Redwall is a charming one, filled with critters with delightful distinguishing personalities. I'm always glad to read one as soon as I can call my place in the "new book queue" (I usually end up last, but don't mind.)

Here's a song from Chapter 32 sung by a young haremaid (long, but worth it):

'Well pish an' tush an' 'pon my word, I am the Primrose Warrior.
The day I joined the Long Patrol, no maid was ever sorrier.

They woke me up at break o' dawn, and sent me off to war,
before I'd had a chance to bathe, or dust each dainty paw.

I went away to fight the foe, with comrades rude an' rough.
They'd never seen a perfume spray, much less a powder puff.

With not a drop of daisy balm, or any rosehip lotion,
I marched along, a dreadful sight, my ears shook with emotion.

Then soon we faced the enemy, an' it was my firm belief,
between that awful scruffy lot, was not one handkerchief!

What were their mothers thinking of? No one had washed his face.
I mentioned to my Officer, they looked a real disgrace!

All filled with indignation then, I charged them single-pawed,
with a boudoir mirror for a shield, a parasol for a sword.

I curled their ears and brushed their teeth, and wiped their runny noses,
then sprayed on toilet water, until they smelled like roses.

They ran away in swift retreat, that rabble so unseemly.
My General then promoted me, for beating them so cleanly.

So when you see me on parade, you chaps must all salute.
I'm called the Primrose major now, and isn't that a hoot?"

Publisher's summary:
Rakkety Tam MacBurl is a brave border warrior who has travelled south in search of adventure. But when his army is attacked by an evil flesh-eating band, adventure finds him.

Gulo the Savage, wolverine, flesh-eater and brutal killer, has come to Mossflower in search of his brother - who stole the mystical stone that will make one of them king of the lands of ice and snow. Anybeast who gets in Gulo's way is dead meat. And he's heading for the peaceful Redwall Abbey - unless Rakkety Tam can stop him.

To buy from amazon.co.uk, click here: Rakkety Tam
from amazon.com, click here: Rakkety Tam

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