Mercedes Lackey has written a lot of novels, but some of the best ones for young adults are from The Five Hundred Kingdoms where Tradition is spelled with a capital ‘t,’ and everything happens according to the story. Life, in the Five Hundred Kingdoms, is kind of like a fairytale…
In the past, dragons rampaging villages have been soothed by a virgin sacrifice. Finding a virginal young girl and staking her out to a rock for some inexplicable reason calms dragons down, according to the Tradition, and so, when the people of Acadia are attacked by a dragon, this is what they do. In developing a lottery system whereby girls are chosen, there is what can only be a mistake. The Queen’s only daughter, Princess Andromeda is chosen. The kingdom reels as the brave young princess goes to fulfill her destiny for her people.
Of course, the Princess is saved by a Champion, which is what the Tradition calls for. Sir George doesn’t exactly slay the dragon, and Acadia is still in great danger. Andromeda has to face the worst, and is prepared to give up everything she loves best to save her home.
But is it a good idea to try and buck Tradition?
One Good Knight is a fun novel that mocks some of the pretensions of ‘high fantasy,’ and include talking unicorns, bold Lads (kind of) and Fair Maidens, creating a fast-paced and amusing adventure story.