The King's Arrow

by Michael Cadnum
224 pages, Fantasy
Reviewed by Clodsley S.

Good book, but very violent.


The mystery of that fateful hunting party in the 1100s following King William's death by Sir Walter Tirel is explored in this historical fiction novel by Michael Cadnum. It is told in the viewpoint of 18-year-old Simon, who accompanies Sir Tirel on the hunt. Things go haywire when William is shot with an arrow and Simon finds himself fleeing for his life...


Good is good and evil is evil, though this is twisted a bit when Simon and Walter are framed.

Spiritual Content

Though this is a book about the Middle Ages, when religion dominated all life, God really doesn't show up a lot in the story, nor do any other religions.


Lots of blood and violence, many of the king's men are injured on the hunt and William himself dies. Simon, on the boat to leave the region, imagines his blood spilling across the deck. Many people die.

Drug and Alcohol Content

Some talk about hunters getting drunk during the event.

Sexual Content

The r-word is used and it happens briefly. A few mild love scenes.

Crude or Profane Language or Content

"P-ss" used correctly.


It was a good story, but a little too violent. I wanted a good historic fiction to read, and this was a good book, though boring and slow at some points. Not recommended for anyone under 11.

Fun Score: 3
Values Score: 2
Written for Age: 13+

Review Rating:

Average rating: 5 stars
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