Like Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, The Inquisitor’s Tale is told in a series of stories, all by different travelers, who rest in a tavern and share the news. The news that’s on everyone’s mind is the tale of three children (and a dog) who are fugitives and wanted by King Louis of France. “How did this happen? That’s what I’m wondering” the narrator tells us in the opening, and readers will wonder the same as they read each storyteller’s captivating tale of Jeanne — a peasant, with a sainted dog — William — a supernaturally strong young monk — and Jacob — a Jewish boy who has the ability to heal. The Inquisitor’s Tale brings the complexity of the medieval period to life and will teach a little about acceptance, bravery, religion, and what to do should you encounter a farting dragon. Illustrated.
~ Eight Cousins— From Holiday Picks 2016
A 2017 Newbery Honor Book
Winner of the Sydney Taylor Book Award An exciting and hilarious medieval adventure from the bestselling author of A Tale Dark and Grimm. Beautifully illustrated throughout
The Inquisitor's Tale is one of the most celebrated children's books of the year ★ New York Times Bestseller ★ A New York Times Editor's Choice ★ A New York Times Notable Children's Book ★ A People Magazine Kid Pick ★ A Washington Post Best Children's Book ★ A Wall Street Journal Best Children's Book ★ An Entertainment Weekly Best Middle Grade Book ★ A Booklist Best Book ★ A Horn Book Fanfare Best Book ★ A Kirkus Reviews Best Book ★ A Publishers Weekly Best Book ★ A School Library Journal Best Book ★ An ALA Notable Children's Book "A profound and ambitious tour de force. Gidwitz is a masterful storyteller." --Matt de la Pena, Newbery Medalist and New York Times bestselling author "What Gidwitz accomplishes here is staggering." --New York Times Book Review Includes a detailed historical note and bibliography
1242. On a dark night, travelers from across France cross paths at an inn and begin to tell stories of three children. Their adventures take them on a chase through France: they are taken captive by knights, sit alongside a king, and save the land from a farting dragon. On the run to escape prejudice and persecution and save precious and holy texts from being burned, their quest drives them forward to a final showdown at Mont Saint-Michel, where all will come to question if these children can perform the miracles of saints. Join William, an oblate on a mission from his monastery; Jacob, a Jewish boy who has fled his burning village; and Jeanne, a peasant girl who hides her prophetic visions. They are accompanied by Jeanne's loyal greyhound, Gwenforte . . . recently brought back from the dead. Told in multiple voices, in a style reminiscent of The Canterbury Tales, our narrator collects their stories and the saga of these three unlikely allies begins to come together. Beloved bestselling author Adam Gidwitz makes his long awaited return with his first new world since his hilarious and critically acclaimed Grimm series. Featuring manuscript illuminations throughout by illustrator Hatem Aly and filled with Adam's trademark style and humor, The Inquisitor's Tale is bold storytelling that's richly researched and adventure-packed. "It's no surprise that Gidwitz's latest book has been likened to The Canterbury Tales, considering its central story is told by multiple storytellers. As each narrator fills in what happens next in the story of the three children and their potentially holy dog, their tales get not only more fantastical but also more puzzling and addictive. However, the gradual intricacy of the story that is not Gidwitz's big accomplishment. Rather it is the complex themes (xenophobia, zealotry, censorship etc.) he is able to bring up while still maintaining a light tone, thus giving readers a chance to come to conclusions themselves. (Also, there is a farting dragon.)"--Entertainment Weekly, "Best MG Books of 2016 "Puckish, learned, serendipitous . . . Sparkling medieval adventure." --Wall Street Journal
★ "Gidwitz strikes literary gold with this mirthful and compulsively readable adventure story. . . . A masterpiece of storytelling that is addictive and engrossing." --Kirkus, starred review ★ "A well-researched and rambunctiously entertaining story that has as much to say about the present as it does the past." --Publishers Weekly, starred review ★ "Gidwitz proves himself a nimble storyteller as he weaves history, excitement, and multiple narrative threads into a taut, inspired adventure." --Booklist, starred review ★ "Scatological humor, serious matter, colloquial present-day language, the ideal of diversity and mutual understanding--this has it all." --The Horn Book, starred review ★ "I have never read a book like this. It's weird, and unfamiliar, and religious, and irreligious, and more fun than it has any right to be. . . . Gidwitz is on fire here, making medieval history feel fresh and current." --School Library Journal, starred review.
About the Author
Adam Gidwitz is the author of the critically acclaimed, New York Times bestselling Grimm trilogy. He spent six years researching and writing The Inquisitor's Tale, including a year living in Europe. Adam lives with his family in Brooklyn, NY. Find Adam online at adamgidwitz.com or @AdamGidwitz. Hatem Aly is an Egyptian-born illustrator whose work has been featured on television and in multiple publications worldwide. He currentlylives in New Brunswick, Canada, with his wife, son, and more pets than people. Find him online at metahatem.com or @metahatem.