In a series in which adult writers are proving that their writing can be tailored to fit junior readers, this novel finds...

READ REVIEW

THE MISTLETOE AND THE SWORD

In a series in which adult writers are proving that their writing can be tailored to fit junior readers, this novel finds Anya Seton for a second time using non-American historical background. The period is Roman Briton, when the conflicts between the Celts and their conquerors were coming to a head. Aglow with color and atmosphere, the plot, nonetheless, seems somewhat patterned. The story tells of the adventures of Quintus, a young soldier of the Ninth Legion, who comes to Britain with a sense of fate as well as duty. For Quintus knows that his great-great-grandfather had been killed by the Druids. Not long after Quintus' arrival the Arch Druid, Conn Leer comes to warn the troops of Celtic uprisings to the north, hoping thereby to prevent unnecessary war. His efforts to disarm antagonism on both sides failed and in bloody battle, following which Queen Boadicea perished, the Romans were victorious. Quintus, meanwhile, has learned the Druid dialect, and through Conn Lear, has met his granddaughter Regan -- thus bearing out part of Conn Lear's prophecy that a new Britain will be built by Romans like Quintus and Celts like Regan. The denouement is what one might expect, and the directness of telling and avoidance of too many side plots brings Miss Seton's style into line with Junior High standards.

Pub Date: May 5, 1955

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Doubleday

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1955