Monday, September 21, 2009

Sir Dalton and the Shadow Heart by Chuck Black

Sir Dalton and the Shadow Heart by Chuck Black is Book 3 of The Knights of Arrethtrae series.


Sir Dalton is a knight in training, being raised up for service of the King and the Prince. He is well-liked and respected among his trainers and his fellow trainees. When a new trainer is brought in to lead the future Knights, Dalton immediately sees that something is not right, as the training becomes less serious and the adherance to the Code is minimized. When Sir Dalton is sent on a mission, he encounters Lord Drox, a shadow warrior, who imprisons him and ,after Dalton suceeds in an escape, tracks Dalton down and leaves him for dead. Dalton is rescued by an old hermit who provides him with the tools he needs to face his enemies, both within himself and those around him.

My thoughts

My initial reaction when I received this book was that I wouldn't like it. I am not generally a "Knight" kind of person (in real life or in my preference for books), but I have to admit that I was pleasantly surprised with Sir Dalton and the Shadow Heart. It is not necessary to have read the first two installments of the series to appreciate it. Black has created a plotline filled with symbolism that will keep the reader engaged and anticipating the next clash of a sword or shadow of the enemy, all the while exposing the weaknesses of the heart and the crevices where doubt in the Prince can show itself. There were quite a few moments in my reading that I had to put the book down and deal with my own commitment level to the Prince. I have to admit, however, that there were times when the spelling of words resembling biblical names and places was a bit distracting for me, but the story and characters were interesting enough that I was able to get beyond it. Overall, I believe that this series would serve as an excellent tool for teaching young men and women some foundational principles in living in God's Kingdom. This is Black's intention, evidenced from the inclusion of discussion questions and answers found at the back of the book. I thought it was a fun and informative read and I may just pick up one of the other installments. Happy reading.

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