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The Tavern Knight

3.44  ·  Rating Details  ·  195 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
It was not to be his good fortune, however, to be in the earlier work of the day. Until afternoon he was kept within the walls of Worcester, chafing to be where hard knocks were being dealt - with Montgomery at Powick Bridge, or with Pittscottie on Bunn's Hill. But he was forced to hold his mood in curb, and wait until Charles and his advisers should elect to make the gene ...more
Paperback, 263 pages
Published March 1st 1977 by Tower & Leisure Sales Co (first published 1904)
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The Tavern Knight is Crispin Galliard, a soldier with a rough reputation who finally gets a long-awaited shot at vengeance after helping Charles II escape the forces of Oliver Cromwell.

People new to Sabatini should start with Captain Blood or maybe Mistress Wilding. This is one of his earliest books, and while I enjoyed it, it's not up to the other things I've read by him so far.

The start is jumpy, the characters aren't very likable, and you can see the plot twists coming. The ending is mean and
Apr 05, 2012 Melinda rated it it was amazing
Shelves: historical
This is classic Sabatini. The English is full of beautifully turned phrases and images. Set in England during the time of Cromwell, the book follows a manly knight named Crispn Galliard on his mission of vengeance against those who stole his life and innocence. The book includes evil plots, lost heirs, mistaken identities, romance along with war and curling. A thumping good read by all standards. I highly recommend it to those of you who like historical fiction, or a romping good tale.
Jul 26, 2014 Edwin rated it did not like it
It was ok for most of the way through -- it was lesser Sabatini, but still had its charms (even though you could tell he hadn't reached the levels he would achieve with later works)...and then the ending happened. Yikes. First off, it's rushed, and major action is relayed second-hand by a minor character. That's not great. On top of that, it's just an icky, disturbing ending--which might (might--I'm not sure but I'm being generous) work if the book played it right, but Sabatini plays it straight ...more
Apr 23, 2015 John rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this a lot. I look forward to reading more of Sabatini's works.
Jeremy Trumble
“I am not one of your repentant sinners, Kenneth. I have lived my life—God, what a life!—and as I have lived I shall die, unflinching and unchanged. Dare one to presume that a few hours spent in whining prayers shall atone for years of reckless dissoluteness? 'Tis a doctrine of cravens, who, having lacked in life the strength to live as conscience bade them, lack in death the courage to stand by that life's deeds. I am no such traitor to myself.”
This is old-style historical romance, of which Rafael Sabatini is the master. Sabatini delights in using the old, sometimes flowery vocaulary of the genre, I love I share.
The Tavern Knight isn't one of Sabatini's best my--favorites are Scaramouche and Master at Arms--but it's Sabatini, and if you like Sabatini it's a good read.
Jeff Miller
May 11, 2011 Jeff Miller rated it liked it
In many ways a typical Rafael Sabatini novel. The lovable rogue done wrong who prevails. This is not the epic like his "The Sea-Hawk" or "Captain Blood", in fact the action is all on shore for a change. There is much I liked about this novel in the tension of the plot for a man bent on revenge and the circumstances that place him in position for that revenge. There are also some Dicken's style coincidences involved. I was quite enjoying the novel till the end which was disappointing and surprisi ...more
Jul 21, 2013 Pandora rated it it was ok
Shelves: adult, sabatini
The best way to describe this story it has similarity to St. Martin's Summer but, is closer in tone to Captain Blood and The Sea-Hawk. I preferred the lightness of St. Martin's Summer. There is also the added factor that as dim as the hero is in St. Martin's Summer he does catch on faster than the Tavern Knight so there is more romance in St. Marin's.

On finishing Belliarion I realized there was another weakness in The Tavern Knight that made it less enjoyable than some of Sabtini's other books.
Amir Adel Anis
May 19, 2014 Amir Adel Anis rated it really liked it
A very good Sabatini adventure, although his later books were indeed more developed.
John Beach
Jun 25, 2013 John Beach rated it liked it
Shelves: classics
I've come to expect better of Sabatini, but this early work of his had it's moments. I was slow getting into it, and also I found the plot fairly predictable, some situations rather convenient. Still… not everything resolved quite as I expected nor took as long to resolve, and it had exciting moments. I found the main character, the Tavern Knight, interesting, and he carries the story well. No one else is very likable, except for Harry Hogan, and so the whole of this is saved by being a good "bu ...more
Sep 27, 2011 Skoora rated it liked it
Shelves: genre
It was a very different formula from the other Sabatini works that I've been devouring lately. The great moments of revelation seemed somewhat understated in comparison to such works as Scaramouche. However I did find it highly amusing in some places, even hilarious. I sympathized with the main character for most of the story, and yet in the end I didn't feel the amazing sense of gratification that I had hoped for. Not a bad read, but not my favorite of Sabatini's stories.
Mar 24, 2015 Kathy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2015
Set during the Civil War, this book would probably have made a good Errol Flynn film, but it is now unfortunately horribly dated because of the writer's attempt to render the narrative in a fake old fashioned style.

The eponymous hero is a Cavalier soldier who has been deprived of his estate. The plot can best be summarised as a tale of romance and swashbuckling. It has some nice twists and turns, but it's fairly easy to see where it's all leading.
Jan 10, 2013 Ellen added it
He painted a wholly unfavorable picture of the Covenanters as being falsely-pious, self-righteous weaklings, and of Cromwell's soldiery as being either Psalm-droning bores, or pretenders who were part of the Parliamentarian forces for strictly pragmatic reasons (and were presented as being far better than the genuine Puritans). Didn't like any of the characters, and the story resolved in an very unsatisfactory manner. Not one of Sabatini's best.
Mar 16, 2014 Remus rated it liked it
Shelves: sabatini
Not as bad as the reviews made it out to be!
A quick read that is actually a lot of fun and tht ending is hilarious although I'm not sure if it was meant to be. The beginning is quite exciting while the last half is humorous in its insanity.
This is the second novel Sabatini wrote and has the flavour of the short stories he did before writing novels.
Feb 19, 2013 Kayla rated it did not like it
My least favorite of all Sabatini books. I enjoy his writing a lot when I am looking for fluff to fill my time, so my complaint is not so much that it is fluff. The way that it ended was almost disturbing however, and very disappointing. It is abrupt, off camera, and when you think about it, pretty messed up.
Oct 30, 2011 Slightly rated it it was ok
not the best.
the tavern knight is one of those schmaltzy yarns that are only pleasing because they are so cliche that the reader feels smart for guessing all the plot twists before the first chapter if finished.

though ridiculously formulaic it's still entertaining.... like a soap opera or a reality tv show.
I prefer the sea-faring novels. This was fine to while away a September day, however. I enjoyed the sword fights but the characters were rather limp for any real swashbuckling. This has not dampened my enthusiasm for the wonderful Raphael Sabatini, oh no! I have seen what the man can do!
Stephen Kibler
I very much enjoyed the book, but what was that ending? Did Sabatini have an important luncheon to attend? Was he distracted by something in the room while he was writing? The grand finale's duel was ... um, related by an interested third party.
Melinda Ross
Oct 07, 2014 Melinda Ross rated it it was ok
Shelves: listened-to
I have enjoyed other books by Sabatini. This one, not so much. The characters were not well developed and I had zero sympathy for anyone of them. The heroine was annoying and the hero obnoxious.
Aug 27, 2011 Christin rated it liked it
Good light sabatini-not his best but engaging and, in my opinion, a surprising ending compared to his typical conclusions. Short, fast, enjoyable.
Marc Douglas
Aug 10, 2011 Marc Douglas rated it it was amazing
another winner by Sabatini
Mero Marmar
Mero Marmar rated it it was amazing
Jul 17, 2016
Victoria rated it liked it
Jul 22, 2016
Pat Winter
Pat Winter marked it as to-read
Jul 09, 2016
Hans G.
Hans G. rated it liked it
Jul 09, 2016
Tweety marked it as to-read
Jul 02, 2016
Amy Linquist
Amy Linquist marked it as to-read
Jun 20, 2016
Tom Manacapilli
Tom Manacapilli rated it it was amazing
May 31, 2016
Farseer marked it as to-read
May 30, 2016
Viktor Sirin
Viktor Sirin rated it it was ok
Jul 18, 2016
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Rafael Sabatini (1875 - 1950) was an Italian/British writer of novels of romance and adventure. At a young age, Rafael was exposed to many languages. By the time he was seventeen, he was the master of five languages. He quickly added a sixth language - English - to his linguistic collection. After a brief stint in the business world, Sabatini went to work as a writer. He wrote short stories in the ...more
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“I am not one of your repentant sinners, Kenneth. I have lived my life—God, what a life!—and as I have lived I shall die, unflinching and unchanged. Dare one to presume that a few hours spent in whining prayers shall atone for years of reckless dissoluteness? 'Tis a doctrine of cravens, who, having lacked in life the strength to live as conscience bade them, lack in death the courage to stand by that life's deeds. I am no such traitor to myself.” 2 likes
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