Saffron and the Kestrel: A 2021 teenager’s short review of ‘Kes’ by Barry Hines

A ‘Kestrel for a Knave’ is an interesting story; I do like the perspective the author has shown that challenges the common stereotype of the midlands being a barren place with no nature of note.

I thought it had a decent range of characters; I liked the fact Hines chose personality traits in Billy which are uncommon in most young male protagonists; for example, Billy has a love for nature and a dislike of sport, which is somewhat of a rarity in fictitious teenage boys.

I’d like to talk about the ending. The last chapter had a bit of a long winded page dedicated to description; the ending itself was somewhat anti-climactic, but other than that, I have no comments; I would give it 4 stars. For me, Kes is not quite a classic, but it is certainly a decent and enjoyable read.

Thanks, Saffron.

PS, I have painted a watercolour of ‘Kes’- Billy’s kestrel. Here are the three main stages of my process:

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