I will never forget the first time I read Mossflower by Jacques. I cannot even recall how I came across it, but I do remember the absolute magic that captivated me from the first page. Absolutely riveting! I followed that up with Redwall, Martin the Warrior, and some others. I never read as many as I wanted to, as other books inevitably called my name, but I have always held a fond place in my heart for this master of contemporary fantasy. The books appeal to all ages and are fantastic read-alouds (something I need to make note of for future classroom excursions!). If you have not yet discovered one of Jacques endearing masterpieces, do yourself a favor and pick one up. Don't be daunted by the size -- I assure you, it will read quickly.
On February 5, 2011 the world of readers lost a great man, Brian Jacques. I plan to pick up Mossflower and re-read it again sometime this year in his honor (appropriately, I also have Castaways of the Flying Dutchman sitting in my audiobook queue).