From the Tudor Terror Series, by Terry Deary, author of the hugely popular “horrible history” series, comes a tale of adventure for nine to twelve year olds.

Will has an opportunity to ride to Scotland with his grandfather, on a mission both dangerous and exciting. Along the way, he learns his family’s history, and it’s involvement in such incidents as the defeat of the Scots at Flodden Field and Solway Moss, the acquisition, and consequent disposing of, the wives of Henry VIII. The story culminates with James of Scotland gaining the English crown on the death of Elizabeth of England.

The author has courteously supplied us with a list of the characters who were taken from history, and also provided a time line of events at the end of the book. The writing style is easy going, and while some of the fictional events may stretch our credulity, the light hearted banter makes this congruent with the overall feel of the story.

Don’t expect the plot development of Sutcliff, or the morality of Henty, or the historical detail of Harnett, but if you are after histfict for a reluctant reader, without the ‘high slop factor’ of some of the diary-type offerings so fashionable at present, The King in Blood Red and Gold, is an enjoyable option.

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