Breakfast Books: The Chronicles of Prydain

We have officially finished all five books of The Chronicles of Prydain.

We started reading them waaaay back in November so it took us nearly 9 months to read them all. That’s not because the books were boring. No, it’s because our mornings sometime turn hectic and honestly, once summer hits the morning reading tends to happen only once a week. I stopped reviewing each individual book after the 3rd so this review talks about both the 4th and 5th books.

The fourth book: Taran Wanderer
This one was the least favorite in this house. As an adult, I understood the need for this piece of the story. This book was truly the turning point for the main character. A lot of learning and maturing happens in this tale – all of which is necessary. However, the action is few and far between – which made for some boring chapters for my kids. Overall grade for this one: C

The fifth book: The High King
A more satisfying ending could not have been written. All our favorite characters came together for the penultimate battle of good vs evil. I am not ruining the story by telling you that good wins in some terrifically exciting scenes. Our favorite characters all played important parts. Little bits and pieces from the entire series came to light in new importance in this last book. It was well-paced and fun to read. I have to admit there were tears in our eyes as we read the last few pages along with a few shouted words of shock at some parts of the ending. By the time we closed the book, however, everyone was smiling. Overall grade: A

Final thoughts on this series.
There is no agreement on which of the books was our favorite. The first book did an excellent job hooking us into the story. Books two and three are battling it out for top honors among my listeners. I tend to lean towards book two but there is something to be said for a well-written ending so maybe I’d pick book five. (BTW – each of those books won awards and they are well deserved.) While each book has enough closure to stand alone, they are much better as a series. My kids are 6 and 10 and were very engaged in the story. The 10yo certainly could have read them on her own but I appreciate her going along with my plan and letting me read them aloud. I would highly recommend these books to any readers (young and old). If you enjoy tales along the lines of The Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter – these stories should be right up your alley.

I’m a little sad to be saying goodbye to this series but we are already having fun with our newest selection: How To Train Your Dragon.

What is the Breakfast Book idea? I believe there’s value in reading aloud to my kids at all ages. I used to read aloud to them at night. But as they got older their bedtimes got staggered, practices and homework happened and sitting down together to read to all of them wasn’t happening. I decided to try reading a chapter to them all during breakfast and it has been a big success in many ways. Want to see all our book selections so far? Click on the Breakfast Book category on the right side of this page.

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