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The Greatest Knight | [Elizabeth Chadwick]

The Greatest Knight

From humble beginnings and a narrow escape from death in childhood, William Marshall steadily rises through the ranks to become tutor in arms to the son of King Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine. Based on fact, this is the story of William Marshal, the greatest knight of the Middle Ages.
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Publisher's Summary

From humble beginnings and a narrow escape from death in childhood, William Marshall steadily rises through the ranks to become tutor in arms to the son of King Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine.

Based on fact, this is the story of William Marshal, the greatest knight of the Middle Ages, unsurpassed in the tourneys, adeptly manoeuvring through the colourful, dangerous world of power and politics to become one of the most powerful magnates of the realm and eventually Regent of England.

©2006 Elizabeth Chadwick; (P)2006 Soundings

What the Critics Say

"Elizabeth Chadwock knows exactly how to write convincing compelling history." (Marina Oliver)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (215 )
5 star
 (95)
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Overall
4.1 (108 )
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3 star
 (15)
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1 star
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Story
4.2 (106 )
5 star
 (47)
4 star
 (38)
3 star
 (16)
2 star
 (2)
1 star
 (3)
Performance
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  •  
    Sharon 01-02-15
    Sharon 01-02-15 Member Since 2015
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    1
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    Story
    "loved it..Marshall is the best story. Thanks"

    Thanks to Elizabeth Chadwick. A wonderful book and truly great story. Loved it and will reread this again. All your books are great reads

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LCNanny 10-24-14
    LCNanny 10-24-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "three stars"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Only if this were the only book on the subject. The book had interesting and specific information that I hadn't come across before but the story as a whole seemed bogged down. But I did finish, so it's worth 3 stars. With all the battles and difficulty William Marshall faced in his life I thought the book would read a little more dynamic.


    Has The Greatest Knight turned you off from other books in this genre?

    no, I enjoy this genre. I think it's the verbiage and tone of the narrator that made it easy to tune out.


    What aspect of Christopher Scott’s performance would you have changed?

    He made it worth the listen.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    julie mobile, AL, United States 08-27-13
    julie mobile, AL, United States 08-27-13 Member Since 2012

    Just a simple girl living the simple life. Nothing is complicated when the power of imagination leads the way. Close your eyes & just listen

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Bravo! Both story and narrator! Fantastic!"
    Would you listen to The Greatest Knight again? Why?

    Yes! A truly mesmerizing story with same in narration! Historical 'fiction' at its best. The characters are so well-developed and believable as well as despicable, lovable, deceitful, and any other .... 'ful's' or 'able's' you can imagine.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Greatest Knight?

    When William Marshall was cast out of the king's realm for falsely being accused of treason.


    What about Christopher Scott’s performance did you like?

    His ability to portray each character was so fluid and distinct. A great listen!


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Exactly what the title is! The Greatest Knight


    Any additional comments?

    You can't go wrong with Chadwick's ability to reel you into a part of the past that was so profound with treachery, deceit, power and turmoil. Fiction or not....it is as real as she makes you want to believe it is.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    history buff louisiana 08-26-09
    history buff louisiana 08-26-09 Member Since 2008

    carol

    HELPFUL VOTES
    71
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    "OK, but kinda boring"

    interesting subject. kinda slow. still a good listen.

    2 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amanda 02-03-11
    Amanda 02-03-11 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
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    "a touch too.romantic"

    I found this tale and the Knight far too perfect to be even vaguely realistic. If pure romantic dream is your want though don't be put off by me.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Danna Palm Harbor, FL, USA 03-16-09
    Danna Palm Harbor, FL, USA 03-16-09
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    "Great book!"

    I really enjoyed the book. The writing, characters, narration, etc. were all great. I'm buying the sequel right now.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 11-16 of 16 results PREVIOUS12NEXT
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  • georgie
    11/30/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A good listen"

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The characters were interesting and well thought out. A sign of a good read to me is when I find myself going the long way round on journeys in the car to allow me to listen to a bigger chunk of the story. I was fascinated at the end to find out the story was based on a little known real character from the times. If I had any complaints it was that the main character was almost too good, with few flaws, although he didn't seem unbelievable despite this. You did find yourself rooting for him and his cause.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • kate
    Stirling, Australia
    10/29/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "OK, but didn't excite me"
    Would you be willing to try another book from Elizabeth Chadwick? Why or why not?

    Have tripped over William Marshall in many books, and was very interested in learning about his story. I learnt but the book didn't grab me. That said I will probably get the 2nd book, so I can learn about the rest of his life. But I'm in no rush - more an intellectual exercise than "wow I have to find out what happens next"


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • sue
    SOUTHAMPTON, United Kingdom
    10/10/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Probs not my kind of listen"
    What disappointed you about The Greatest Knight?

    It felt as though it was aimed at a younger market, a bit of an immature approach if you know what I mean. The characters felt incomplete and shallow.


    What could Elizabeth Chadwick have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Maybe less characters and better developed central ones. There was a lot of material in the part lifetime.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Christopher Scott’s performances?

    there were mistakes; such as 'he said' when it was clearly a female who'd spoken so I'm not sure how focused he was. Overall his voice was pleasant and he did all the characters well


    What character would you cut from The Greatest Knight?

    Probably the periferal Royals


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • NYChic
    NYC
    3/12/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "No depth, no real conflict, no passion"
    What disappointed you about The Greatest Knight?

    This could have been an exciting book with heart-wrenching and exciting scenes, if the author had managed to inject any real emotion whatsoever. As it is, it's monotonous on the level both of the overarching plot, and each scene. Even if you don't know anything about William the Marshal, every time he's facing some new hardship you know that he's going to come out of it on his feet with his halo intact and very little real challenge. If the narrator switches to a character other than William Marshal for a moment, you know they'll be important, and within a sentence you can probably guess why. The characters have very little depth and it's just hard to care about them. The chapters felt about as emotional as if I had just read "William's liege was sinful and died, so William was sad and went to Jerusalem to save his soul and ponder death. Then he came back, won another tournament, and the queen told him how honorable he was."It was okay listening (on x1.25 speed) while I was doing data entry at work, but I won't be getting the sequel. I guess a positive point is that I now know how to pronounce "deshabille", as the author seems a bit addicted to that word.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Elizabeth Chadwick again?

    Nope.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    The narration was fine, although there's a piece of weird new-age-jazz-celtic music they've composed to put in chapter breaks and things, and it seemed to be just randomly put into places where it's not needed and left out of places it should be in. Sometimes it's like this:"William came in from his latest journey looking tired and full of honor. **MEDIEVAL ELEVATOR MUSIC** His wife thought about their babies, ran him a bath, asked him what was going on and gave him sage advice."but then sometimes it's like this:"William was no longer surprised that his 23 year old former captive medieval lady wife was a budding diplomat and took her advice to heart. John watched as knights rode up to his castle, fuming about how hard his life was and how he wasn't as good as his little brother."


    What character would you cut from The Greatest Knight?

    They're all as cardboard and shallow as each other.


    Any additional comments?

    It WAS interesting from a historical point of view, given that it's essentially a badly-dramatized biography, and did prompt me to spend some time on Wikipedia learning more about who the characters were in real life and how they fit into the rest of that period in England's history. I'm going to have to look up more historical fiction about this period and these people, just not by this author.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Barbara
    HOGNASTON, United Kingdom
    1/6/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "You feel you're there. Part of the tale unfolding"
    What did you like most about The Greatest Knight?

    How William was able to get through what seems to be unsurmountable problems in his life and just battles on.It made it all the better because William Marshal was the greatest knight and much is known about him. The story has been weaved cleverly through the history that is known to make the reader feel they are part of some of the most turbulent times in our history.


    What did you like best about this story?

    How the Greatest Knight develops as a person and how he balances work and personal life.


    What does Christopher Scott bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    The length of pauses in the right places. It gives the characters more depth. Helps the listener wait anxiously for more. Yet he paces the book so well.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes.


    Any additional comments?

    To give you some idea of my feelings for this first of the William Marshal books. I've downloaded the next one and the others are in my wish list.Elizabeth Chadwick is a great novelist who couldn't have done better than choose Christopher Scott to narrate them.Thank you all.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • elizabeth
    ALFORD, United Kingdom
    10/9/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Deffinately the greatest"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Greatest Knight to be better than the print version?

    I havent read the print version. But I shared listening to this with my husband who has read the book, he really enjoyed hearing the story this time.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Its hard to pick out 1 character as she gives them all substance.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Bibliophile
    Cumbria
    8/11/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Long but well worth listening"

    Very interestingly written, bringing the characters to life. Relationships between William Marshall and his Lords are well-drawn, as are his family relationships

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 11-17 of 17 results PREVIOUS12NEXT

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