peaking of old, I’ve managed to worm myself into Medieval Drama. It’s an undergraduate course at BSU, you see; it’s also a Lit class . . . which means it has more than its share of bookish wall flowers who’d rather have all their teeth plucked out, one by one, than actually participate, on a stage, in front of an audience. So, they invite members of the community to fill in as needed. So as not to keep you up at night: I’ll be playing the Lady of Synadoun, the lady turned to a snake by evil sorts . . . and crying lady 2.
Last night was our first rehearsal.
Now, on the whole, I feel my years have been kind. Most days, should you ask, I’ll tell you I feel quite young, thank you. I tend to chalk it up as young at heart, but it may be time to rethink that scenario. It may be nothing more than the fact I hang with nonagenarians, because walking on campus last night . . . I am so not young. Whoa, dude!
But I digress . . .
Needless to say, I have a certain soft spot for the middle ages. It’s such a fascinating period. And the literature! There’s love and adventure, sorcery and intrigue. There are damsels–and a good many of them are anything but in distress, I might add. Take Silence–a girl raised as a boy who grows up to be a famed minstrel and knight. Are you kidding me? And, of course, there are the knights of renown. Who can forget Gawain, with his puffed out chest, or Kay, who obviously needed more whippings as a child–and Jeffalot? I did not make that up. Thanks to him, you too can have a knightish name.
No wonder the Fantasy genre is steeped in the medieval tradition. It’s awesome!
So when Jules, of Pancakes and French Fries, mentioned her son was interested in the Middle Ages, and asked for possible book suggestions, I was all over it. At least, I called on my friend, Dr. Linda Marie Zaerr, to be all over it. A medievalist, she knows a thing or two about the middle ages. I thought perhaps she could suggest a book or two. Well, she suggested nine pages worth, broke out by genre/topic and age appropriateness.
Speaking of awesome.
A couple things of note: 1) The books included are those that remain true to the period, original story, etc.; 2) The list was actually compiled many years ago, so there could very well be books published in the last few years that meet the criteria. But this is a very good place to start.
Jules formatted the list and added it to her blog, including editor’s notes, links to free copies, and one fabulous illustration. For those who like hard copies, I whipped up a pdf. And let’s not forget the books for older sorts, too.
Now, without further ado . . .
Ex Libris: a Medieval Reading List for Children (including editor’s notes and links) | Downloadable medieval reading list for children | Medieval literature reading list