King Arthur's Very Great Grandson is the story of Henry Alfred Grummorson, the great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandson of King Arthur. On the morning of his sixth birthday, Henry leaps atop Knuckles, his trusty donkey, and gallops off in search of adventure. He encounters a Dragon, a Cyclops, and a Griffin, but to his dismay, they are all friendly! Yearning for a real battle, Henry heads to the sea where he challenges the most fearsome of all beasts, the Leviathan....
Published by Candlewick Press, King Arthur's Very Great Grandson is available in bookstores now. It is also available from many online retailers including: Indiebound, BarnesandNoble, Amazon, and Powell's.
Reviews and Distinctions
"From a gifted new author-illustrator comes an original story about a very old hand: namely, Henry Alfred Grummorson, the great-great-great-great-great-great-great-grandson of King Arthur." - New York Times
"There is a type of small child—and if you know one, you'll immediately understand the sort I mean—who will do just fine in the epoch of the iPod but who would have blossomed in the Age of Chivalry. King Arthur's Very Great Grandson could have been dedicated to these valorous youngsters, for in the most ornate and charming way it acknowledges their natural impulses while gently frustrating them with an ending that reflects modern expectations." - The Wall Street Journal
"...debut author Kraegel proves he’s a talent to be reckoned with. He has a Monty Pythonesque sense of language, humor, pacing, and character—the text’s mixture of bombastic and deadpan deliveries makes for a stirring read-aloud. This fine sense of the epically absurd also animates Kraegel’s rococo watercolor and ink renderings: in his hands, a dragon’s scales coalesce into an intricate mosaic, a tree is a swirl of mazelike lines, and the sea becomes a tangled mass of blue ribbons." - Publishers Weekly, starred review.
"With all the courage and flourish of Arthurian legend, Henry’s formal voice bellows each call to duel, all in capital letters and in a distinguished font from ye olden days. Kraegel teases this tiny knight with monsters that prefer play over fray. Despite the determined lack of conflict, Henry still manages to find a treasure he didn’t know he was seeking. The illustrations succeed in matching the rugged scenery with the adventurous text while giving clues to the surprising ending. This is a good choice for reading aloud and for discussing such topics as friendship, aggression and the bravery it takes to change your mind" - Kirkus Reviews
"Kraegel contrasts his simply drawn kid hero with a visual feast of wide, meticulously patterned landscapes.And thwarted expectations aside, the boy’s bombastic proclamations should inspire youngsters to greatheights of stately derring-do against their own imaginary foes (and friends)." - Booklist
"The text skips along like Henry's donkey, bringing this irrepressible young boy to life. Kraegel's winsome illustrations, full of expressive details and a timeless palette, recall the work of John Burningham." - School Library Journal
"There’s an appropriately folkloric pattern to Henry’s quest, and the surprising outcome of his search for a battle partner is humorously satisfying. Henry’s dashingly defiant, archaic dialogue is equally comical, making this a pleasure to read aloud." - The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"A charming debut picture book that puts a humorous twist on the classic quest tale." - Shelf Awareness
Featured on Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast
Reviewed in the San Francisco / Sacramento Book Review
Reviewed by Susan Rife of the Herald-Tribune
Reviewed on Tanya Anderson's Blog
Reviewed on readthespirit.com
Reviewed by Sharon the Librarian
© Kenneth Kraegel 2007-2013