Thursday, March 31, 2016

Rules for a Knight by Ethan Hawke

Rules for a Knight
by Ethan Hawke

I’ll have to admit — I didn’t enjoy this as much as I was hoping to. Actor/author Ethan Hawke (Dead Poets Society, Gattaca, Training Day) put out this short volume of fictional essays in 2015, after compiling it over the course of a couple of years. It is framed as advice being passed down from noble knight Sir Thomas Lemuel Hawke (ostensibly Ethan’s ancestor) to his children, written on the eve of Sir Thomas entering a great battle. Each short chapter starts with a “rule” for proper knightly behavior, followed by a short fictional “remembrance” of Sir Thomas, recollecting experiences he had during his own training for the knighthood. Topics of the “rules” include, Solitude, Humility, Gratitude, Pride, Cooperation, Friendship, Forgiveness, Honesty, Courage, Grace and ten more. Also included is a short “epic poem/song”, referenced within the text of the rest of the book.

Though fashioned as a legitimate historical document, it isn’t — Hawke weaves together influences from a variety of different philosophical backgrounds and theories, and includes attitudes or ideas that seem much more modern than the time period of the Knights would have allowed. None-the-less, all 20 of the “rules” are admirable, even if the faux “reality” of the examples used to illustrate the rules are unrealistic. Since Hawke wrote this as advice for his own kids, I’ll give him credit for a good read!

[ publisher’s official Rules for a Knight web page ] | [ Wikipedia page for Ethan Hawke ]
Recommended by Scott C.
Bennett Martin Public Library

Have you read this? What did you think? Did you find this review helpful?

New reviews appear every month on the Staff Recommendations page of the BookGuide website. You can visit that page to see them all, or watch them appear here in the BookGuide blog individually over the course of the entire month. Click the tag for the reviewer's name to see more of this reviewers recommendations!

No comments: