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Song of the Sparrow by Lisa Ann Sandell
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Song of the Sparrow (2007)

by Lisa Ann Sandell

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4953220,650 (3.97)22
  1. 00
    The Watch That Ends the Night: Voices from the Titanic by Allan Wolf (Joles)
    Joles: Both books are written in verse and are written for a YA audience about historical events.
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I bought this book years and years ago and as a child, I could never get into it with the way the sentences were staged. This last week I came across it again and decided to give it another try.
While the book revolves around the legendary Arthur and his Round Table, the real story rests on Elaine, the woman behind Arthurs soldiers. When her mother is slaughtered, Elaine is surrounded by men and only men for many years- with no one else to do the mending, healing or aid of friendship that only a lady can give, Elaine longs for someone to share her burdens. Unfortunately when the Saxons attack and her family and friends decide to band together with the other Britons to drive them out, they bring with them Gwynavere. Loved only for her looks and seldom what's inside, Gwynavere is bitter and rude and Elaine starts to find solace only when she is alone.
When Arthur, Lancelot and the rest of the men leave for battle, Elaine decides she can not stay and wait for heir return, and follows after the soldiers.
For days and nights she trails after their footsteps until eventually she is captured- Gwynavere having filed at her own rescue attempt is along side her. Together they overhear the Saxons plan, and run to help Arthur.
It is a story of love, bravery and acceptance, all within the beloved characters we've known for centuries.
The problem with the book however, is that I found the initial events to be quite long, and most of the story took place before the war ever started. Unfortunately too, Elaine was, for the most part, happy to keep to her place, and so the story rarely got much adventure except for one small, quick chapter- and while I can empathize with the characters and I rather liked the turn of events that happened after her near fatal injury, I can only wish that there had been much for daring adventure, outside of the tedious jealousy and conflicts that sat throughout the book.
Overall, while the story was better than expected, it never impressed me and I was looking for a friend of Arthur's to be a little more in the action than she was. ( )
  PracticallyPerfect | Sep 30, 2014 |
Retelling of the legend of King Arthur in verse. Elaine is the only woman in a war camp, with 100 brothers, only two of which are blood. She has grown up wild after the death of her mother at the hands of the Picts, and she barely knows what to say when the fair and feminine Gwenivere arrives to marry Arthur. The battle of Mount Badon looms, and Elaine must find peace with Gwenivere if the battle is to be won. ( )
  TheMadHatters | Mar 3, 2014 |
I very much enjoyed this book. The poetic style made it easy and quick to read while still holding a lot of great content and story. I loved the preface of the poem with another poem-The Lady of Shallot- and the overall plot was superb and interesting through out the story. A great read with a surprising amount of action! ( )
  marandaray | Sep 20, 2013 |
Cute story! Too bad there isn't a follow-up story.. I'd love to hear more of Elaine!
  Melumebelle | Aug 8, 2013 |
Come by my blog, Forever Lost in Books, for MORE reviews, giveaways, interviews and memes!

My Opinion :


Song of the Sparrow was my very first book in verse (I am a newbie to books in verses, yep!) . I actually didn't even know it was in verse until I read Justin over at Justin's Book Blog review (I know, so stupid of me!). I totally agree with her : I don't know anything about books in verse, and I was actually afraid (well, almost) to read one, because I don't really like poems, except some Robert Frost Poems (Especially Fire and Ice... umm... I bet Katy Pery wrote her song, Hot N' Cold with that poem!). But, the book was nothing like a poem; the story flowed easily and it was really fast-paced and easy to read!

I really loved the main character, Elaine, because she was fierce and nice, but yet had a great personality of her own. In the beginning, I was rooting for her and Lancelot to get together! But after some mean words he said to her because he loved Gwynivere and was heartbroken, he got on my Black List (duh, duh, duh, duuuuh), and you don't want that to happen. Even though he apologized afterwards , he was on my Black List forever! Then, Tristan (*swoon*) came aboard, and I fell in love with him along with Elaine. I thought they made the perfect couple (even though I want to snatch him away!)!


I had actually never read books on the legends of Arthur (I think....), and so this was also a first! I really loved it!

Funny story is, in class this week, my teacher just said the word Saxon and I said I hated them. People looked at me strangely, and I only said that because they killed Elaine's mother and invaded Arthur's territory (like that helped)!


4 roses! Great book! ( )
  ccathee17c | Jun 7, 2013 |
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Epigraph
Lying, robed in snowy white

That loosely flew to left and right --

The leaves upon her falling light --

Thro' the noises of the night

She floated down to Camelot:

And as the boad-head wound along

The willowy hills and fields among

They heard her singing her last song,

The Lady of Shalott.

"The Lady of Shalott" by Alfred, Lord Tennsyson, 1842
Dedication
In loving memory of Sydney Sandell.

For my two best friends....

Sharon, more than you know, you are a source of inspiration, of joy and love.

Liel, my partner, my muse, you are the love and light of my life
First words
I am Elaine daughter of Barnard of Ascolat. Motherless. Sisterless. I sing these words to you now, because the point of light grows smaller, ever smaller now, ever more distant now. And with this song, I pray I may push back the tides of war and death. So, I sing these words that this light, this tiny ray of light and hope may live on. I dare not hope that I may live on too.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
"Elaine the fair, Elaine the loveable, Elaine, the lily maid of Astolat": Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0439918499, Paperback)

Since the days of King Arthur, there have been poems and paintings created in her name. She is Elaine of Ascolat, the Lady of Shalott, and now there is a book all her own. The year is 490 A.D. and 16-year-old Elaine has a temperament to match her fiery red hair. Living on a military base with her father, brothers, and the rest of Arthur's army, Elaine pines for the handsome Lancelot, and longs for a female friend. But when the cruel, beautiful Gwynivere arrives, Elaine is confronted with startling emotions of jealousy and rivalry. Can Elaine find the strength to survive the birth of a kingdom?

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:36:47 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

In fifth-century Britain, nine years after the destruction of their home on the island of Shalott brings her to live with her father and brothers in the military encampments of Arthur's army, seventeen-year-old Elaine describes her changing perceptions of war and the people around her as she becomes increasingly involved in the bitter struggle against the invading Saxons.… (more)

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