Mara's Reviews > Blood Red Horse

Blood Red Horse by K.M. Grant
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's review
Dec 26, 08

bookshelves: horses, young-adult, series, historical-fiction, 2008
Read in December, 2008

I was excited about this book initially, but unfortunately such great potential was never truly realized. The story and action were mainly glossed over, saving the most time and attention for displaying the static perfection of Will and his horse, Hosanna. Will is, at very best, a very boring male Mary Sue, who makes the right decisions and serves as the story's moral focus through the horrible climate of the Crusades. His horse is essentially an equine version of him, and while they go through their trials and tribulations, rest assured that they do it with a little too much dignity and divine favor. There was so little character growth for Will that he never grabbed my attention, as how could he? Perfection is never interesting. After a while, I couldn't help favoring Gavin, the flawed older brother, Will's foil. Mostly, Gavin is a collection of dishonorable mistakes and human reaction to war, but in this book it's displayed in a way that is less than desirable. You're supposed to love Will, but Gavin showed the sparks of personality, and it would be expected given that almost every major plot point effected him, whereas Will kept skipping along, perfect as ever, totally annoying, praising his horse like he's second only to God. Then there's Kamil, the Muslim version of Will. Sure, his attitude is blood thirsty through most of the novel, but with a little trial and error Kamil turns out to rival Will's squeaky clean boredom by the end. A weird historical novel, probably a little too politically correct (A Christian knight randomly asking a Muslim enemy where Mecca is in order to pray for the life of a horse in the middle of a battlefield? Is this at all likely?), and very two dimensional. The villains slink and twirl their mustaches, the hero could never possibly be tarnished, and the most interesting guy (Gavin, but then that's just my opinion) gets the short end of the stick because after Will there can be nothing left for him. Unlikely, vaguely irritating, could have been much better.

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Reading Progress

12/09/2008 page 7

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