cover image Song of the Gargoyle

Song of the Gargoyle

Zilpha Keatley Snyder. Delacorte Press Books for Young Readers, $14.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-385-30301-9

Tymmon is left to fend for himself when his father, an influential court jester, is kidnapped in a night raid. Fearing for his father's safety as well as for his own life, Tymmon escapes from Austerneve Castle and hides in the forest depths. There he meets Troff--a ``gargoyle,'' a huge, dog-like beast. Together Tymmon and Troff wander the land, supporting themselves by the jongleur's arts. In a somewhat contrived conclusion, Tymmon and Troff return to Austerneve in a blaze of glory, having rescued both Tymmon's father and the castle's long lost prince from a villain's dungeon. This fuzzy, somewhat meandering medieval adventure lacks the uniquely authentic protagonists and the crisp, clear writing characteristic of Snyder's earlier work ( The Egypt Game ; The Headless Cupid ; The Changeling ). Nevertheless, there is much to enjoy in this adventure of a boy and his gargoyle. Reminiscent of Adam of the Road , the tale should please animal lovers and fans of the picaresque . Ages 12-up. (Apr.)