This is an earlier Redwall book about the famous Badger mountain stronghold. So these weasels want to take over the castle because they think there's treasure inside. I was expecting the badgers to eventually say, there is not treasure, the real treasure is in ~~your heart~~ or something. Nope, spoilers, there is treasure. Haha, I was reading too deep into this children's book.
There was so much food in this book, I gained ten pounds just reading it. There were like three feasts, in the first one these stoats literally could not stop eating, their stomaches almost exploded and they had to be taken to the infirmary.
Not only the food, but the action was ramped up as well. There were so many instense and tersely written battles. Although aimed at younger readers, the book does not shy away from violence, There was a shrew ambush against cannibal frogs, an injured ahwk staving off ravenous crows, even a ninja fox who would sneak in and poison the wells. For me , the villains are the most interesting and captivating characters, and I actually felt real grief at the way the fox was dispatched, more than any of the good characters! What does this say about me, haha.
The stoats were interesting characters. I felt like Jauques was trying to make his 'vermin' characters more nuanced. They never mean to do any harm, but there seems like there is a sort of inevitability to their actions. It was almost like they were literally too dumb to live. It seemed kind of arbitrary to me that one caught a dangerous and hihgly contagious illness, almost like a way to motivate the heroes in this new plot direction. This book also had hawk, crow, lizard and frog characters, which was interesting as in the later books it seems like only mammals can talk. There was also a sort of leviathan monster, like something out of myth. It added real Dark- Age flavor to this work.
All in all a good book and a fun ride