#MGlit Review: The Inquisitor's Tale

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One dark night in France, 1242, several travelers cross paths and begin sharing tales about three extraordinary children: William, an oblate in a mission from his monastery; Jacob, a Jewish boy who has fled from his burning village; and Jeanne, a peasant girl hiding her prophetic visions. Oh, and they're accompanied by Jeanne's greyhound, Gwenforte, recently brought back from the dead.

Told in the style of The Canterbury Tales, The Inquisitor's Tale by Adam Gidwitz is the story of three unlikely children and their magical greyhound, adventuring through France to escape prejudice and persecution.
Not to mention farting dragons.

Well. I had no idea what to expect with this story! When I first discovered it, I thought it was going to be an adventurous fantasy story (which it is!) but it's also deeply rooted in medieval history and the time of the Inquisition. In fact, Gidwitz adds in a great resource list and historical background at the end of the novel for readers from his years of research for this book.

I found The Inquisitor's Taleto be a really humorous read, perfect for any middle grade readers, cue the farting dragon and butt jokes, but at times it was a bit graphic with violence. Willam is a freakishly strong boy in the story who isn't afraid to use his "gift," and a few of his scenes are quite detailed in the violence. Gidwitz tries to write it humorously and tastefully, but if you're a squeamish reader, it's best to skip over those.

Overall, I really enjoyed this read, even if it was completely different than what I expected. It was adventurous, fantastical, and humorous, yet rooted in facts, making it a great piece of historical fiction. AND, there's a little twist I did not see coming near the end that had me all flabbergasted about the narrator of the tale!

If you're a fan of knights or the medieval time period this is a must read! Also highly recommended for fans of adventure stories, tales with multiple point of views, and just enough magic to make you believe!


📚 Ages 10 +
📚 Graphic violence at times
📚 Medieval historical fiction/fantasy