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Fortune's Fool

3.11 of 5 stars 3.11  ·  rating details  ·  46 ratings  ·  10 reviews
CONRAD THE GOOD serves as court jester to a most unworthy master: Lord Otto “the Witless,” who rarely appreciates jesting and acrobatics and more often rewards his good fool with a good whipping. So one night, Conrad flees, leaving Otto’s realm in search of a more enlightened master—taking with him only his noble horse, Blackspur, and his beloved, the servant girl Christa ...more
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published May 13th 2008 by Knopf Books for Young Readers
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Cover Blurb: The only reason it caught my attention is because it was clearly either historical fiction or fantasy, and if it was historical fiction I wanted to read it. I like the idea behind it being like a stained-glass window, but I wish it actually looked more like a real stained-glass window, rather than a colored picture.

What I Liked: Conrad was an awesome protagonist. He was funny, but was also capable of being serious. The romantic relationship between him and Christa didn’t feel rushed
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Candace Cunard for

As an orphaned teenage jester in the court of a medieval German lord, Conrad doesn't enjoy the best treatment.

He entertains Lord Otto with acrobatics learned from his jester father, now dead, and he makes friends with others at the castle, but he sleeps in a stable and has few human comforts. When he receives a particularly painful beating for speaking out against Lord Otto's unjust taxing of the peasants under his control, he resolves to leave in
Conrad, a jester in medieval Germany, flees his oafish master to find an enlightened master to work for. He is a likeable, well-drawn character, and armed only with jester wit and cleverness, he goes out into the world with his loyal horse and his beloved girlfriend (disguised as a boy apprentice). Karr captures the medieval tone of Conrad’s voice well, although the florid text will be cumbersome for some readers. Children had to grow up very quickly in those days, and it is easy to forget that ...more
Eva Mitnick
Teenaged jester Conrad the Good escapes from his brutal lord Otto "the Witless," taking kitchen maid Christa (known for good reasons as "Christof" while on the road) with him. They are hindered in their plan to make their own way in the world as a married free couple by the legal status of jesters in 14th century Germany - essentially they have no rights whatsoever. This is as witty and moving an adventure as one could wish - Karr's trademark sense of humor is much in evidence, and she clearly i ...more
Kaelyn Grant
Quite an enjoyable book from the historical perspective of a court fool.
This book sounds like many other "quests" with the travelling companion, assorted side-kicks, saved from fate's worse than death, it is an enjoyable read with interesting details about the life of the jester which it's vagaries and miscreants. Students of the Middle Ages will enjoy it. The romantic element makes it a little hard to place, discussion of breasts and coupling put it at the older end but the plot is not that complicated for older readers.
It takes us back to the medeival times in Germany when the "Fool" or the entertainer was a part of a society which looked down upon him in all ways possible.In this book, our hero, the fool,escapes from a terrible master and sets in search of a wise,fair and enlightened master along with his beloved.
A straight-up historical fiction. Set in the 13th century this would work well for reluctant middle-school readers or a mature 5th grader. There is a blossoming romance with vague details which is why this is better for older readers.
In medieval Germany Conrad the Fool, court jester, tries to find a kind lord to work for and along the way gathers a “family” to himself. Lots of fun.
Ugg reading htis for school
makes no sense.
speaks in old time engllish
makes no sense!!!
it makes me crazy
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Kathleen Karr was born in Allentown, Pennsylvania, and grew up on a chicken farm in Dorothy, New Jersey. After escaping to college, she worked in the film industry, and also taught in high school and college. She seriously began writing fiction on a dare from her husband. After honing her skills in women’s fiction, her children asked her to write a book for them, (It Ain’t Always Easy, Farrar, Str ...more
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