First Test: Book 1 of the Protector of the Small Quartet

Kobo ebook | December 18, 2007

byTamora Pierce

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Tamora Pierce returns to the land of Tortall with a heroine who refuses to quit in this first book in the #1 New York Times bestselling Protector of the Small series.

Ten years after knighthood training was opened to both males and females, no girl has been brave enough to try. But knighthood is Keladry's one true desire, and so she steps forward to put herself to the test.

Up against the traditional hazing of pages and a grueling schedule, Kel faces one roadblock that seems insurmountable: Lord Wyldon, the training master of pages and squires. He is absolutely against girls becoming knights. So while he is forced to train her, Wyldon puts her on a probationary trial period that no male page has ever had to endure. Further set apart from her fellow trainees, Kel's path to knighthood is now that much harder. But she is determined to try, and she's making friends in the most unlikely places. One thing is for sure, Kel is not a girl to underestimate.


From the Hardcover edition.

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From the Publisher

Tamora Pierce returns to the land of Tortall with a heroine who refuses to quit in this first book in the #1 New York Times bestselling Protector of the Small series.Ten years after knighthood training was opened to both males and females, no girl has been brave enough to try. But knighthood is Keladry's one true desire, and so she ste...

Format:Kobo ebookPublished:December 18, 2007Publisher:Random House Children's BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0307433358

ISBN - 13:9780307433350

Customer Reviews of First Test: Book 1 of the Protector of the Small Quartet

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from 10/10 Would Read Again...and Again I have honestly read this series through around 10 times - that's how much I LOVE it. Out of all the characters Tamora Pierce has ever written, and that I've read, this is my favourite. Kel's journey from her childhood to her knighthood is so amazing to me. Part of this is the setting of a medieval fantasy land and how in that world girls were not supposed to become knights, but also because in real life girls were not supposed to be knights. I love Kel's journey quite a bit more than Alanna's because of their personalities. Alanna was super sassy, and while that is fun, I really wanted a girl heroine that was down to earth and just cared about justice. Kel is all that I hoped to be, and I think reading this as a pre-teen for the first time, and the many after, it just struck me how strong she must of had to have been to bite her tongue when she got reprimanded for no reason, when she fought with bullies, and also when she was made to have a trial year when no one else did. Even though it was sexist, she wouldn't take it lying down and showed them all. She is a little mature for her age, but it's explained away by her separate training in Yamani islands - which I likened to Japan to help me understand better, but they expected a lot out of their kids. The age span of people in medieval lands was often much shorter than it is now, especially as knights, so I feel like they had to age quickly. ALSO, Kel isn't some ridiculously beautiful and thin girl. She's nicknamed the "Lump", is tall and gangly for her age, and is fairly plain as far as we know. She's relatable to so many people instead of a model! Not to mention, she's an amazing fighter, and quick on her feet (training camp anyone?). At age 10, this is a great accomplishment. I think again, this is explained by intense training in the Yamani islands. “You'll see. I'm as good as any boy. I'm better." - Kel
Date published: 2017-01-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Role Model I read this book as a kid and admired Kel so much for her strength and gall. A great book for a young person.
Date published: 2016-12-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I love Tamora Pierce! I love the new characters set in the same world as her other books.
Date published: 2016-12-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love it Anything Ms Pierce writes is pure gold, and I love her new heroine!
Date published: 2016-12-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful! This is the perfect book to interest a preteen girl into the the magical world of Tortal. Tamara Pierce's world is an amazing because it portrays female protagonists who are great role models. I grew up reading her books and they are dear to my heart.
Date published: 2016-12-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Beautiful World and a Wonderful Character to Follow The first time I read this book, I was in elementary school. Once I had finished, I begged my mother to buy me the next book because I had absolutely loved it. I was afraid that I wouldn't enjoy it as much again because I was no longer in the target audience, as with The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, but I was glad to see that it was still an enjoyable read. Reading it now, after so many years, I found that I understood a lot more than I did back then. Unfortunately, it isn't possible to enjoy a book the same way as I did the first time I read it because I can no longer discover it; having a faulty memory did help with the reread, though. It makes me sad to think that if I had read it for the first time now, I could've enjoyed it that much more because nothing beats exploring a book for the first time (and understanding everything in it on the first go). The beginning is what made me feel as though the plot would move too quickly and be without depth (which is typical of children's books), but after a few chapters I was able to immerse myself into the world and the pacing settled down perfectly - although that doesn't mean that I had an easy time putting the book down. The ending, while not abrupt, felt as though it could've done with more of a lead up, though, but it was a good one (although not so good at the same time since I remembered it differently). The characters are absolutely wonderful, too. It took me a while to remember characters since many of them were introduced in groups, however seeing them a few times helped make them memorable since they all behaved in their own special ways. Neal is my absolute favourite; his sarcasm and his joking attitude always make me smile, and I became fond of him really quickly. Cleon was another fun character, and even Merric became memorable. They all act in such ways that help keep them apart, and it makes it that much more of an enjoyable experience to have such a colourful cast of characters guiding me through the story. The Tortall universe is amazing. The different cultures are distinct and interesting, and magic (including mythical, and other, creatures) fits seamlessly. Having also read other series in the Tortall universe, it's also nice to see familiar faces every now and then (like Alanna and Daine); this is only with my second run through, as the Protector of the Small series was my first introduction to Tamora Pierce's writing. Things were explained well, and it showed that the author researched a lot all while only giving the readers what they needed to know. The path to becoming a knight, with all the adventures along the way, was explained without overdoing it, and showing how Kel learned her skills through various methods was believable. It was interesting how feminism was approached in this novel. It didn't beat me over the head with equal rights even though it is a major theme, and it wasn't too minor of a thing that made it a passing plot problem. Having Kel want to make sure people remember that she's female is interesting, and she doesn't think herself any less or better for being so - she just does what's necessary to become a knight, and refuses to let anyone's beliefs get in the way of her own. It might be a tiny bit overplayed at times, but considering the whole point of the book is that she's trying to prove that even she as a female can become a knight, then it's understandable. The end was different than I remember, but that may be because I'm remembering the end of the second book instead (or so I think). I wish it would've been a more overwhelming action that caused Lord Wyldon to have her pass her probationary period, but it was still a good end. The only problem is that I could have sworn that the probationary period was in addition to her four years as a page, but then again I may not be paying attention after all - it doesn't affect my view of the story, it just annoys me to remember one thing and have it happen another way. I'm glad I decided to reread the series again. I did enjoy reading it as a preteen, and now as an adult I know that I'm still going to enjoy the series because of how well the author presents everything. Following Kel's adventures, with a fun cast of characters, a vast history, many cultures, and an interesting plot, is definitely worth it, and I know I'll enjoy this series many times more in the future. #plumreview
Date published: 2016-11-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Strong independent heroine! Tamora Pierce is still one of my favourite authors, though I'm not a teenager anymore. If you're looking for a genuinely strong, compassionate, independent heroine, look no further. In a medieval fantasy world full of magic and myth, this protagonist achieves incredible things simply by being herself.
Date published: 2016-11-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best Series I've Read in a Long Time I read this book as a 11-12 year old and cried when I reached the last installment of the series. This character is amazing as you follow her through the journey for her dreams. A great story holding the bottom line of being able to achieve anything you want no matter the obstacle.
Date published: 2016-11-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Favourite through the Years I am a grown-ass woman who still loves this series by Tamora Pierce. I am a Pierce fan in general, but this series really raised the bar. I loved Kel: her morals, her hard work ethic, her supportive family and her determination. She wasn't born with uncanny abilities, but rather the plain youngest child of a nouveau riche family. Kel is very aware of her -- and her family's -- standing in society; her parents are diplomats, her brothers are everyday knights, there is no glory or particular prestige to her family. Her mother's brave accolades were recognized but not to the scale of Alanna the Lioness or Daine the Wild Mage. Kel decides to follow in her brothers' footsteps, and become the first recognized female page. The going is tough, with challenging teachers and cruel male pages. She does build a circle of trustworthy and loyal friends, but what sets Kel apart of her values: hard work, honest and loyalty. She always protects the underdog because she IS an underdog, but she doesn't let preconceptions keep her back. I loved the book as a child and devoured the series as I got older. Now as an adult, I personally lent my own copy to a young cousin who also fell in love with this story. Kel is my favourite Pierce heroine.
Date published: 2016-01-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it very glad to know that I haven't grown out of this series... I was totally transported to tortal. And this gives you a different point of view... like when they know your a girl.
Date published: 2013-11-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from First test Very good story
Date published: 2013-04-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing series Magic & griffins and girls in training for battle.
Date published: 2013-02-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Incredeble Kelady of Midelan whants to become a knight. And she can. for the past 10 years, girls have ben alowed to become knights. when Kel arrives she relises that some do not want girls to become knights. but Kel dosn't give up. on her way through her first year as a page she meets Neal of Queenscove who becomes her best friend. Will Kel be able to become like the boys? Join Kel and her friends as she fights to have her rights!!
Date published: 2008-03-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Warrior Woman! Can Keladry of Mindelan make her dream come true? Can she become a knight? In the fantasy realm of Tortall, the eleven year old Kel begins the greatest challenge of her life. Despite the many obstacles, Kel is determined to keep up with the boys and prove herself. Kel is a talented, intelligent and determined young woman, but is that enough? Tamora Pierce has created a captivating story with a heroine who defies tradition. This novel is filled with action, emotion, and humour. First Test is an extraordinary tale that readers will never want to put down, and will be read again and again. Nicole
Date published: 2007-11-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from New insight to the world of Tortall. i read the book because it was written by Tamora Pierce, and thought it was an interesting change from the previous books. The main character doesn't have magic and actually has to work through everything without magic. The book gives an interesting new view to the world of Tortall, from a not as magically related view. Good light reading book as always.
Date published: 2006-07-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from enthraling funy dramatic i read this book as a little light reading ... beacause it was by tamora peirce... and i was hooked you have to read it!
Date published: 2006-03-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from This book is full anxiety!!! This book was really good!!! the author reallly dicribes kel really nicely!! I just cant wait until i read the next one!!!! I would reccomend this for 12 and up!! awesome book!!! WAY THE GO TAMORA!!!
Date published: 2005-12-29