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Pearls of Lutra


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About the Author

Brian Jacques ( was born in Liverpool in 1939. He left school at age fifteen and found work as a docker, a truck driver, a policeman and a stand-up comic, all before turning his attention to writing. He wrote his first novel, Redwall, for the children at a school for the blind in Liverpool. Since 1986, his descriptive style of writing has captivated readers from age 8 to 80. His books have won international awards and acclaim and have been made into a TV series. He died in 2011.


In this hybrid mystery/adventure, the latest Redwall saga, six beautiful pearls are hidden in Redwall Abbey. A marauding mob of corsairs seeking the jewels kidnaps the Abbot as a bargaining chip, thereby setting the plot off in two distinct directions. In one, the denizens of the Abbey, led by the young hedgehog Tansy, must solve a series of riddles to find the pearls; theirs is a fun- and food-laden search that harks back to a similar hunt in the series opener, Redwall. Chapters of this quest alternate with a more epic tale, as the warrior mouse Martin leads a small band on a great chase across the open sea to rescue the Abbot. After an intriguing meeting with "sealfolk," the rescuers snatch the Abbot off an island in a bloody-and implausible-battle with the corsairs. The triumphant return of Martin and his cohorts diminishes the importance of the hunt for the pearls, a disappointing loose end; in Redwall, Matthias puts the sword he has quested after to good use. The pearls do allow Tansy, one of a number of strong female characters in key roles, the chance to prove that she is fit to be the first Abbess-but only by throwing them away. The incomplete meshing of the two story lines, and the recycling of a plot from a previous installment, suggest that even though there is plenty of adventure left, this well-loved series may finally be running out of steam. Ages 6-up. (Jan.)

Gr 4 Up‘Devoted fans of Jacques's "Redwall Tales" will snap this off the shelf without any prompting. And those readers who have not yet discovered the delights of Redwall Abbey will likely be converted by the time they have finished reading this rollicking adventure set within the abbey walls, around Mossflower Woods, and on the tropical Island of Samptera, populated by vermin corsairs; Trident-rats; and the evil Emperor Ublaz Mad Eyes, a pine martin. The Pearls of Lutra, a set of six pink pearls known as the Tears of All Oceans plundered from the Otters of Holt Lutra, have slipped through the malevolent Ublaz's paws. He sends a crew of rough Wave Brethern and creepy monitor lizards to recover them from Redwall Abbey, where they have ended up by chance. In the course of events, the beloved Abbot Durral is kidnapped, and Martin the Warrior and a group of charming, valiant, and ravenous beasts from Redwall and Mossflower sail off to save him. In the meantime, the determined hogmaid Tansy and her friends must use the riddlelike clues to recover the pearls from the six spots where they were hidden by the now-deceased Fermaid the Ancient. Although good triumphs over evil as always, readers will experience heartache and some scary moments, as well as encounter quite a bit of bloodshed along the way. A welcome addition to the Redwall canon and a good, solid recommendation for filling adventure- book assignments.‘Carrie Schadle, New York Public Library

Praise for Pearls of Lutra

"Devoted fans of Jacques . . . will snap this off the shelf without any prompting."--School Library Journal Praise for Brian Jacques' Redwall series... "Astonishing!"--Kirkus Reviews "Energetic fantasy!"--The New York Times Book Review "Rousing adventure!"--Publishers Weekly "Old-fashioned swashbuckling adventure."--Locus "Jacques's realistically drawn characters are full of personality."--Publishers Weekl

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