Review of ‘The Quest for the Holy Something or Other’ by Kylie Betzner
This is the story of Pig, a young girl plucked from the obscurity of shovelling out the cess-pit beneath the walls of Camelot, who for a joke becomes page to Sir Kay.
What follows is a pythonesque romp through the myth of the Arthurian legend. The table becomes a pineapple and the knights far from equal. There must be a quest and sure enough Merlin finds one; though for the reluctant Sir Kay, his is slightly different.
The main driving force throughout the book is the relationship between Sir Kay and Pig. Other characters come and go, but as the story evolves, so do they. I liked the dynamic between them and how they slowly become more reliant on each other as things evolve. You can empathise with them, which is all down to the characterisation of the author.
There is a gentle humour running throughout the book with clichés aplenty, which is as it should be with a parody, and some moments of slapstick. There are good few modern day references to put things into perspective too. The author hasn’t gone solely for cheap laughs; there is a subtlety and innocence to the humour which will appeal both to the YA market as well as to adults.
Kylie Betzner should be congratulated on finding her own voice where she could quite easily have copied another’s. As a debut, this bodes well for the future.