Monday, 24 July 2017

The Shield (The Finder Series Book 1) by C.J. Bentley - Blog Tour Review


Life Of A Nerdish Mum is hosting the blog tour for The Shield (The Finder Series, Book 1) by C.J. Bentley and I have both my review of the book and a super extract. 

The Shield

People lose their belongings. That is a fact of life. It can happen by accident, but sometimes it can happen when you put them in a very safe place and forget where that safe place is. Not many people are good at finding them again.
A young, gutsy girl with a kind heart, who’s searching for her own identity growing up in the 1960s, just happens to be very good at finding things. Can she be the one to help return whatever is lost – anywhere and at any time - to its original owner? 
With the help of a beautiful yet mysterious wise woman and a chivalrous knight she does just that. She finds and returns his shield, lost in battle, which unbeknown to her holds a secret that is important to his King, the safety of the Kingdom and the life of the daughter of his best friend.
The Shield is the first story in The Finder Series, taking our heroine on extraordinary journeys back in time. Her first adventure takes place in Medieval England in 1340 where she meets King Edward III, his wife Philippa and their son, who will later become the Black Prince.

My Review

The Shield took me right back to my childhood in the way it was written. The way the characters talk and the way the group of children interact, especially at the beginning remind me so much of books that I read as a child, such as The Famous Five and The Secret Seven. This meant that the story was a bit slower paced to start off with than I'm used to with more modern styles of writing, so it did take me a couple of chapters to get into it, but once I did I was hooked. 

This book is full of action and adventure and I know my step daughter is going to absolutely love this. The story is clever, and is on the perfect level for the age it's aimed at without talking down to them, which is definitely good to see. 

I loved the prologue and I thought it was really well written, a knight has to deliver an important message that is hidden in his shield but he is gravely injured after an ambush. I really got sucked into this and I really wanted to find out what was happening, what the message was and if the knight was ok, which I think is a really great start to a book. 

I thought it was a really nice touch at the end to have some historical facts at the end of the book s that children can learn a bit more about the time period that is covered in the book. Especially as York has such a rich history. 

Overall a really great book and I will now be passing on to my step daughter and I will definitely be keeping my eye out for the next books in the series. 

I gave this book 4 stars. 

Extract

The Past…..
The shield releases its secret and Sir Kay and the girl are taken back to 1340 and the time of King Edward the third a lawless time where the barons are planning to overthrow the King and the French are planning to invade the country. Peggy, brought back in time to become the Lady Eleanor questions everything and everyone, even the wise woman who seems to control time…….

Sir Kay dismounted and held my pony’s head while I did the same he then tied both sets of reins to the garden fence, allowing both mounts to graze on the grass growing outside of the garden.  We opened the gate and as we walked together up the garden path the door opened and a lady greeted us.  Not the ugly, grim witch like person I was expecting, far too young and quite pretty with long dark braided  hair and a big smile.  She was dressed in a blue dress like me so I immediately liked her.
“You have brought her then Sir Kay?  She looks well”, she addressed this to Sir Kay but her eyes were on me as she spoke in a light lilting voice.
“Er, excuse me but I am here, in front of you so please address me.”  I was not going to be ignored.  “I hope you are going to answer all of my questions because I have many and I am not playing along with this charade until all of them are answered”.  I spoke with authority but I didn’t really feel brave, I was more than a little worried about this meeting and knew I had to keep on her right side if I wanted to see my friends and family again.
We entered the cottage, it was gloomy inside but I could make out various herbs hanging from the ceiling beams which gave the inside a perfumed smell and the fire blazing in the hearth gave an orange glow to the rough wooden chairs either side of the fire.  A black pot was hanging over the fire with interesting smells coming from it which made me remember I had not had time for breakfast.  I was waved towards a chair and I sat down readying myself for the interview I was ready to give this wise woman but she handed me a spoon and not taking no for an answer she ladled contents of the pot into a wooden bowl which she then handed to me with a nod of the head for me to eat.  I didn’t need telling twice, it was a savoury stew, not sure what was in it but it was absolutely the most delicious meal I had eaten since arriving wherever I was, so I tucked in.  When I finished I really looked at her, (not being very good at telling ages I didn’t try to age her but I would have thought around my mum’s age, so between thirty and forty I guessed).  She had dark coloured hair which was braided like mine but her eyes were what drew me in, they were a very light blue but had darker blue centres, very strange indeed, different but having looked into them you would not forget them in a hurry.  I took a deep breath and launched into my speech.
“Right, I take it you are the wise woman Sir Kay has told me about and that you arranged for my being here, wherever here is and more importantly when, I seem to have been brought back in time somehow, so how and when and why?”  As usual it all came out in my usual sudden rush of words.  I looked at them both as they glanced at each other before their eyes rested on me again.

About The Author


Originally heralding from the North of England, C.J Bentley has travelled extensively and enjoyed living in a variety of countries across the world from Dubai to Doha, Qatar and now the countryside in the South of France. A background in teaching and childcare she has always enjoyed creating adventure short stories. However, it was when she became a grandma and with her grandchildren growing up  that she discovered that books seemed to contain only stories of vampires, zombies and farts that she decided seriously to take matters into her own hands and put pen to paper which today she calls The Finder Series.

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