I would like to honor Brian Jaques, a favorite author of mine, who died recently. He was the one who wrote the fatastic series of Redwall books. Rest in peace Jaques.
Wow, I did not know about this news until I read this post. Brian Jacques is a big part of my childhood. I still remember walking into a book store when I was hmm, eight or nine, and my sister was like, “Hey, you know these books are pretty good” pointing to a shelf of Jacques’ works.
I didn’t know that the stories had some time line to them, so the first novel I picked up was Mossflower. I picked that book up, and I can’t remember that I put it down more than twice before I finished reading it. Over the course of, I don’t remember exactly, two months or so, I made several trips back to the book store and came back with several more books from the Redwall series. At the elementary school book fair, I eagerly awaited the arrival of Taggerung, which was a new release in 2001. I couldn’t stop reading.
I found out that Brian Jacques had a book club thing going on, where you could sign up to receive little cards and posters of various book covers. You know what I did with them? I IMMEDIATELY put them up all over the wall of my small room, and before long, it was covered with various heroic mice, squirrels, otters, and badgers.
I remember clearly, after a night of rain, I discovered that The Long Patrol was soaking wet! Ohhh, I was so mad at my sister at that time, I blamed her for putting the book there when everyone knew that if it rained hard, water would seep in. I let it dry, and of course over time, my anger disappeared as Jacques wrote more novels. I also remember doing a book report on Marlfox as well, and I even took the time to sketch the cover of it to include in my report. Ah, the memories, the great memories.
Reading the Redwall books, you can’t avoid the DELICIOUS FOOD. Ohh, my mouth was always watering when all the critters gathered in the Abbey to feast on the harvest. In the Redwall book club, several recipes were even included (I remember trying to make some leek dish…didn’t turn out as mouthwatering as I’d hoped… but that’s irrelevant!). Brian Jacques was a master at making his words come to life; I could see the battles fought, could smell the food from the table, could feel the splash of the water from the pond where they fished for watershrimp.
Soon, I started to wish for more variety. I remember a parody site on the Redwall series: Everything is peaceful, THEN THERE IS A BATTLE, and they win and have a delicious feast. That’s when I found out about the Castaways of the Flying Dutchman series. Wow, what a treat. the Redwall series seemed targeted to a younger audience, and as I passed through elementary school and moved onto middle school, this new setting and story was just right. I’m thinking about it now, and it’s almost an eerie plot. Woo, getting the shivers…
Of the Redwall series, the only ones I have not read are Eulalia!, Doomwyte, The Sable Quean, and The Rogue Crew. I’ve read all of the Castaways of the Flying Dutchman books, and have tried cooking several recipes from the cookbook. Hey, if I have time, I might go back and read those four books I never got to.
Brian Jacques, I thank you from deep in my heart for doing what you did. Reading your author profile, I thought it was so cool that you did so many different things in your life, and it was because of that that your storytelling was so rich. I’m in college now, and as the world is shifting more to “you’ve got to find a job and get cracking on your career”, I’ve never stopped trying new things. I swam four years on the high school team and one year at college, but after taking an introductory acting course, I decided it was time to try something new and now I’m a member of our school’s spring theater production. I also saw that our school had a juggling club, and I got into that, dabbled a bit in contact juggling, and finally found out about yo-yoing. My piano professor (in a fairly serious tone) told me that I should go to China after my undergraduate degree and try my luck with some tv channels or movies. My parents tell me to ignor that, but hey, I’m all for trying something different. You only have one life after all.
You were the one that really brought me into reading. While I placed your books aside for more “advanced” stories, I never forgot your influence. My bookshelf at home has completely updated books that now suit my needs, but never have your books left the top shelf, forever there as a monument to your passion. Words cannot describe how thankful I am for you. Tears are starting to well up.
Without a doubt, you’ve led an action-filled 71 years, surrounded by loving family, fans, and readers. You can’t read this, but you must know that there are many others like me. Rest in Peace, Brian Jacques.
Taggerung was definatly one of my favorites of his books.
I can’t stop reading his books.
He went with flying colors, mostly red though XD