Foreword Reviews

Genny Faces the Green Knight

Clarion Rating: 4 out of 5

A plucky girl sets herself on an imaginary quest in this fun fantasy for young readers.

In Darrel Gregory’s middle grade fantasy, Genny Faces the Green Knight, a girl with a great imagination has an exciting, make-believe adventure in medieval times.

Genny is the narrator; she speaks to the audience, introducing herself and some of her favorite toys. Then, making use of her amazing imagination, Genny goes on an escapade in her mind. She daydreams about crawling through a magical tunnel; when she emerges from it, she sees Camelot.

In her new medieval setting, Genny encounters Queen Guinevere, who is in full armor. Guinevere reveals that the green knight is challenging her kingdom, but that no one feels brave enough to face him. Genny takes on the task. She is outfitted in full armor. With the encouragement of her ladybug friend, Bug, Genny fights the green knight, who admires her daring and strength of character. After she succeeds, Genny returns home and promises to undertake future adventures.

Exciting illustrations complement the story throughout. They depict the action and movements of all of the characters; among them, a fight scene is the most rousing image. All are colorful and realistic, with the exception of Bug’s depiction; he is the same size as Genny and wears a red cap, and seems more like a cartoon character than others in the story. Still, the pictures convey as much of the story as the text itself, stimulating the imagination and encourage the audience to replicate Genny’s creativity and make-believe play. Thus, even though Genny’s tale is compact—the limited text means that some pages only contain a sentence or two—it has a strong impact.

Fonts vary throughout, helping some words to stand out; some sentences curve above the book’s illustrations, becoming akin to illustrations themselves. However, the series title and the book title are confused on its cover because of the sizes of each and because of their placement.

Fast, tidy, and pleasing, Genny’s narration is direct and repeats challenging words to help with retention. Also more than once, she shares her fun and inspiring method for handling new and unnerving situations: she tells herself, “Feet, get moving!” Inspiring themes, including of adventure, imagination, friendship, and courage, make her tale deeper and more memorable.

In the middle grade fantasy novel Genny Faces the Green Knight, a plucky girl sets herself on an imaginary quest to face down a medieval challenge.

Reviewed by Jill Beauchamp

Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review. The author of this book provided free copies of the book and paid a small fee to have their book reviewed by a professional reviewer. Foreword Reviews and Clarion Reviews make no guarantee that the author will receive a positive review. Foreword Magazine, Inc. is disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

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