Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Story of Rolf and the Viking Bow, Book 22 of 52

16 year old Rolf lives a simple life on his father's small farm in Iceland until their wicked, covetous neighbors hatch a plan to gain possession of their farm. The injustice mounts as slaves are enticed to run away and deceitful lawsuits force his father to be confined to their farm causing life on the farm to become increasingly difficult for the family. Then Rolf's father is unjustly murdered, and his murderous neighbors make Rolf an outlaw so that he is forced to flee Iceland or be killed. Even abroad his misfortunes continue as he is captured by pirates and forced unjustly into slavery by the pride of the son of the very neighbor who was the source of all his grief at home. Despite numerous hardships as Rolf seeks to regain his freedom, he continues to strive in every situation to do that which is right and never gives up hope that he will find a bow with which to prove under Icelandic law that his father's killing was unjust thereby regaining his home for himself and for his mother.

The Story of Rolf and the Viking Bow by French is an intriguing and thought-provoking tale that I would wholeheartedly recommend for anyone over the age of 10. It has an excellent balance of suspense and depth so that the reader is not only drawn into the story but challenged by the decisions of the main character to grapple with issues of injustice, perseverance, and forgiveness. I'm definitely keeping this one as a must-read for the kids and a permanent part of our home library to be enjoyed again and again.

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