Age: The writing is at about the level of junior high, but the content is adult
Terence is a quiet and submissive boy who lives with a hermit who can see the future. When a stranger eats with them for supper, the hermit predicts Terence will be his squire. It turns out the stranger is King Arthur's nephew, Gawain, on his way to be knighted. Terence and Gawain go on many adventures together, including aiding estranged lovers, meeting faeries, and slaying opposing knights. Terence even learns who he really is and what he can become.
Men kiss each other on the cheek in greeting and parting. (No sexual intent)
A man wears a woman's skirt to taunt another knight into refusing to fight him.
A man is considered "irresistable" to women and a "ladies' favorite."
A man and woman get married. At the wedding, they kiss (no description) and everyone cheers.
There is mention of "enchantresses" who take your breath away to look at them because they're so beautiful.
A lady is described as having "beguiled" a man's "jaded eyes."
An enchantress is said to have "wooed men." She then changes from being a snake to being a having a "very shapely" body and legs, clothing covering her at the last minute.
A man is tied underneath his horse so his face is looking up between his horse's hind legs, or "nether eye," as its described. It is used to shame him, without sexual intent.
A man is obsessed over a woman, writing a poem to her nose. It is mentioned that he describes the rest of her face, neck, and waist (although nothing is actually said).
A man calls a woman his love and lambkin. He swears eternal fealty to her, says he offers her his life, and that he worships her.
A man carries another male servant into a room because he is in his way. He is asked what he is doing with the man. He responds with, "Nothing inappropriate, I assure you."
A man kisses a woman a long time on the lips. Another man says she has been false and defiled for doing so and wants nothing more to do with her.
A knight and a boy help a lovesick couple reconcile.
Women are described as "the fairer sex."
A faery talks about other faeries falling in love with humans.
A woman visits a man and a boy in the middle of the night, offering her love to the man. When he accepts, the man takes the her in his arms and they "hold each other tenderly." The boy looks away.
A man weeps and sobs, missing his love.
A man tells his friends that he "dabbled in a few love affairs." (It is said to purposefully mislead them, since he had not.)
A man and a dwarf argue over a woman. The woman ends up choosing the dwarf, whom she loves. They "embrace ecstatically."
People fight for no reason at all, killing others without a thought for life. So much of it is incredibly pointless. The only time anyone seems to feel compassion is when a man uses his wife as a shield and Gawain ends up cutting her head off. The casual way people die over and over again throughout this book, slain for no other reason than a seemingly misuse of testosterone, made the critic cringe.
Women appear to be bloodthirsty and vicious all throughout the book.
A man knocks a knight off his horse, hits him with a stewpot, and finally kills him with a sword in the chest, all because he challenged him over wanting food.
A boy kills a rabbit directly behind its front legs with an arrow.
Faeries are said to have done mischeif and lured people to their deaths.
Five kings are killed in a battle. One bites his enemy's finger before dying.
Two brothers fight for no reason, one opening up a wound in the other's shoulder. Blood wells from the gash. The wounded brother says he will bleed to death. No one seems to care.
A man kills another man by knocking him off his horse, kicking him to his "rump," and putting his sword deeply into his helm - all because he wanted to cross a river.
A man talks soothly to a lame horse and then swiftly kills it.
A hart is killed by dogs, who "worry its bleeding carcass."
A man kills five dogs, leaving one to whimper and crawl away, dragging an almost severed hind leg behind it. Another man kills the wounded dog. The second man then takes revenge, giving him five blows for every dog he killed.
A man uses his weeping and loyal wife as a shield in a swordfight. His enemy accidentally cuts off the woman's head. The enemy tells the man to carry his wife's head to the king to tell his story. He threatens to kill him "by inches" if he does not.
A man is said to have killed a woman's brother in front of her eyes. The woman demands his life. She tries to attack him with a dagger. The man takes the dagger and tries to drive it into the woman, but a knight cuts off his head. The woman raises his head high triumphantly. The knight ties the man's head to the woman with a cord and makes her take it back to the king. The head is described as "bouncing" and "dripping blood on her gown."
A knight fights another to break a curse to get his voice back.
A woman says a knight told her to fall on a spare sword (commit suicide) if he was ever killed. She didn't and says, nonchalantly, that all her knights get killed. She says that one cut off a man's legs at the knees and laid one at her feet. She saiys it was very pleasant, even though it was still bleeding. The woman goes on to recount many other bloody battles and cheer listening to how others have died.
A knight gets attacked, slapped, spit on, and tied underneath his horse, his face looking up between the horse's hind legs.
A man threatens a boy by saying he will "taste his sword."
A woman throws "kitchen swill" on a man and then throws eggs at him. She then calls for guards to beat him with boards. (He escapes beforehand.)
A boy kicks a spearman in the face.
A woman talks about how she harnessed a man with a pony to her sleigh.
A woman slaps a man on the cheek.
A woman throws stones at a man she claims to love.
Eel-like poisonous creatures slither all over two people walking through a lake.
A man talks about how he killed an unintelligent gian who "wept like a motherless babe as he died."
An enchantress casts a spell so a king is ill.
A man fights a knight who he believes to be his father and kills him. (It turns out it's just empty armor instead of a real knight.)
A boy blisters his hand on a hot pot.
A witch tumbles into a cistern.
Many men are said to swear, but no word is ever written besides the two in French below.
Knights and women call each other many names:
"Salaud," which is French for "ba*****"
"Merde," which is French for "sh**"
"Trollop," "paramour," and "courtesan," which are used on women to describe them as disreputable, and especially as prostitutes or adulterers
A man is called a "sod," which is British slang for a sodomite or homosexual
"Scrubby (or grubby) brat"
"Pompous, self-absorbed fribble"
"Good-for-naught, brainless whelp"
"Pestilential little gnat"
"Disgusting little beast"
People say "By Jove," "Good Gog," "What the devil," and "Heaven preserve us."
A period of time is described as "hellish."
The rear end is described as the "rump" or "nether eye."
Christian Principles: None
There is no portrayal of God in any sense. Instead there are beings with different powers, a witch or sorceress called The Enchantress, people who can predict the future, and faeries who can change their shape and appearance.
A hermit who can predict the future is called a "religious man," but he says and does nothing that involves anything Biblical, besides calling his talent a "gift of God."
A man falls in love with a hideously ugly faery for her heart, but does it in what appears to be one day. She gives him a choice as to whether she will stay ugly or change her face to be pretty, but he shows his love for her by letting her decide. Another man is obsessed with a woman and calls it "love at first sight." He then says he worships her. He ends up calling another woman, who he develops an instant crush on, "worshipful goddess."
An enchantress says, "You have never known love until you have loved something foul." A teenage boy thinks that beautiful women are all cruel and hateful.
A man does apologize for kissing a woman who is not his. He admits he never should have done so when another man says, "How would you like to see someone else kissing the woman you loved?"
Knights drink wine and brandy.