For all of its traditional elements, there are some fun twists concerning gender roles. Their are no female equivalents of ruling positions-- everyone, male or female, are kings or Sirs. There is a brief mention that Eleanor and Odo might be romantically linkws, but they are far too busy to think about this too much. Everyone on the quest is brave and powerful, and the only one who really needs to be saved is Kendryk... who has some tricks up his own sleeves.
This has many similarities to Flanagan's The Ranger's Apprentice books, but is slightly younger. The talking swords (whose voice is portrayed in an old Germanic style text) and the bats (whose utterances are punctuated thus: "L!o!o!k! l!e!f!t!") add an element of whimsy that will amuse a younger audience.
While I have been enjoying the fantasy adventure books set in other cultures and dealing with other mythology, there will always be a core group of fantasy aficionados who crave more British style Camelot inspired fantasy where there are swords to be wielded against dragons.