Official Review: Badman:The Ghost of King John by Peter Tye

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Official Review: Badman:The Ghost of King John by Peter Tye

Post by micoleon13 » 06 Aug 2017, 10:50

[Following is an official review of "Badman:The Ghost of King John" by Peter Tye.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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Peter Tye brings history to life in his novel Badman: The Ghost of King James. In an epic tale which crosses through time to medieval England, the story is enthralling from start to finish.

When Nick and Fiona move into Lamford Manor with their parents, little did they know that their lives were about to change forever. Lamford Manor has been haunted by a mystery ghost for as long as anyone can remember, terrifying it’s many occupants over the years. Edna, the cleaning lady, has had many encounters and has learnt how to cope with it’s ominous presence. Nick, however, is determined to learn who the ghost is and together with Edna, Fiona and their great aunt Daphne, they uncover clues left by the ghost. They stumble on a series of hidden tunnels and are transported back in time to 1216, right at the end of King John’s reign.

Caught up in the turmoil of King John’s last days, Nick and Fiona help the current Lamford Manor family as best they can against treachery, mercenaries and attack. Medieval England is certainly more life threatening than in 2016 but, amongst all the danger, will they be able to finally discover who the ghost of the Manor is and put him to rest, or will they be trapped in 1216 forever?

This was a brilliant, well researched story and I found it very difficult to put down. Written in third person, the story starts with Nick and Fiona, but is interspersed with chapters set in 1216. These follow the story of Sir Ralph and his son, Hugh, who were the inhabitants of Lamford Manor at this time. This layout helps to set the scene as well as provide a balanced history of the political situation and the characters involved.

All the characters were three dimensional and realistic, from the main core characters to those who played the smallest part. Nick, at 10 years old is an over enthusiastic history buff who is overjoyed at the fact that he is able to experience history first hand, while Edna as a stoic, no nonsense woman provides a much needed balance to his enthusiasm. Sir Ralph’s character was utilised well to show how many people of medieval England were pulled in multiple directions, sometimes needing to choose between loyalty to the king or the safety of their own family. The amount of research undertaken for this book was very evident in the quality of the portrayal of these characters.

Categorised as a children’s book, I would say that it is much more aimed at those over 10 years old as, although the story is easy to read and flows along quickly, there are fight scenes which do involve bloodshed. The writing style of the author does not patronise its young readers and would be an excellent way to get younger people interested in history.

My only criticism is with the editing. There were multiple punctuation errors of missing commas and speech marks. Although it didn’t affect my enjoyment of the story, it would definitely benefit from one last go through with the editor.

This book took me completely by surprise with its quality of storytelling and I would love to give it full stars. However, there were just too many punctuation errors to let slide, so I will rate it at 3 out of 4 stars. This is a great book for young and old who are interested in English history and adventure. I look forward to more books from this author.

Badman:The Ghost of King John
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Post by kandscreeley » 10 Aug 2017, 13:06

I'm glad you enjoyed it. I thought about reviewing this one myself, but I just wasn't sure. Now I'm wishing I did! Thanks for the lovely review.
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Post by CatInTheHat » 10 Aug 2017, 16:45

I thought about reviewing it too! It sounds like it would be a fun read. It might be one for me to read with one of my nephews. He's really into this kind of stuff, so it would be nice bonding time.
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Post by micoleon13 » 10 Aug 2017, 19:02

Thanks! I was a bit wary of reviewing it as it was categorised as children's, but I'm so glad I did.

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Post by RegularGuy3 » 10 Aug 2017, 21:01

I love good historical fiction. This one sounds like it is too young for me and too old for my kids but thanks for the review!

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Post by Excitedreads » 10 Aug 2017, 23:18

Thank you for all your attention to detail in putting forward this one. I saw this one and just passed it, but i think I'll take a reroute. Time travelling annd historical fiction are just up my alley! Thanks for a great review!
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Post by Abfaniki » 11 Aug 2017, 03:11

l love history books more especially those of English (England) themes, is always fun to read about the politics surrounding their Royal family.
Nice review!

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Post by Anirudh Badri » 18 Aug 2017, 04:45

Love the premise and seems like a nice book to get children started with reading. It's a shame there are so many punctuation errors. I really find such things distracting and usually distract me from the writing.
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Post by IsabelMay » 19 Aug 2017, 12:39

I didn't know this would be a children's book, but it really need a better cover. Medieval England is never a boring theme, but I hope the violence scenes weren't too graphic. Thanks for the review.

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Post by KlareAllison » 27 Aug 2017, 20:07

I enjoyed this review, well-done! Stories about ghosts are very likely to get the attention of not only very young readers, but also adults who are into children's literatures. I am one of such adults.
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