"[An] engaging mix of history, legend, and romance." —Publisher's Weekly starred review
"A fast-paced Arthurian novel with broad appeal." —Historical Novels Review
On the path toward greatness, even a hero makes mistakes.
Armed with his magical sword and otherworldly horse, Gwalchmai proves himself the most feared and faithful warrior of Arthur's noble followers. But while defending the kingdom, he commits a grave offense against the woman he loves, leading her to disappear from his life and haunt his memories.
With his trusted servant, Rhys, a commonsense peasant, Gwalchmai tries to find her in the Kingdom of Summer, where Arthur has sent him. But an unexpected and most malevolent force of evil and darkness is loose—that of his mother, the witch-queen Morgawse—and Gwalchmai finds that the secrets of his past may deny him peace...
In the second book of Gillian Bradshaw's critically acclaimed trilogy, Sir Gawain comes to life as Gwalchmai, startlingly human yet fantastically heroic.
Praise For Gillian Bradshaw
"Compelling…splendid…vibrant…exhilarating, a novel seduces us into accepting sorcery and sanctity in King Arthur's England." —New York Times Book Review
"Courage, darkness, magic, cruelty and kindness, justice and liberation…all the things that you have come to relish in the tales of King Arthur and his brave knights." —Yankee Romance Reviewers
"This engaging and enchanting retelling of the Arthur legend will appeal to adults and younger readers alike." —Publishers Weekly
Bradshaw's second Arthurian tale, originally published in 1981, surpasses 2010's Hawk of May in bringing the world of a Roman Arthur to life. The tale of Gwalchmai, aka Gawain, continues, this time narrated by no-nonsense Rhys ap Sion, a farmer who leaves his family's holdings to pledge his service to Gwalchmai and the forces of the light. Gwalchmai often broods; Rhys simply does what needs to be done, whether that's thatching a roof or facing off against the evil Queen Morgawse. Where Gwalchmai has otherworldly power of the light to ward off the darkness, Rhys has only his loyalty, his Christian faith, and his shrewd manner, and he's all the more likable for it. Arthurian retellings rarely come from the voice of a freeman, and Rhys's grounded perspective enhances the fantastical elements. Adults and young readers alike will be delighted by Bradshaw's engaging mix of history, legend, and romance.