cover image Mattimeo


Brian Jacques. Philomel Books, $23.99 (448pp) ISBN 978-0-399-21741-8

The cruel fox Slagar steals a group of young woodland animals from Redwall Abbey--and among them is the great warrior mouse Matthias's son, Mattimeo. Slagar's motive is revenge, but as Matthias and a band of Woodlanders pursue their children's captors far across the desert to a horrible slave kingdom, Slagar attempts to destroy the champion Matthias to make his victory even sweeter. This final book in the Redwall trilogy is a truly thrilling conclusion to a swashbuckling, heroic adventure. Jacques's realistically drawn characters are full of personality, from the most humble bankvole to the foppish, lop-eared rabbit and the vicious, back-stabbing fox. The fierceness with which the Redwallers fight back to save their young lends the story credibility within the realm of the animal kingdom, while at the same time taking wonderful liberties with the imagination. Ages 10-14. (May)