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A COALITION OF LIONS by Elizabeth E. Wein


by Elizabeth E. Wein

Age Range: 12 & up

Pub Date: April 1st, 2003
ISBN: 0-670-03618-8
Publisher: Viking

A gorgeously imagined and wildly exciting historical narrative, combining Arthurian legend with the kingdom of Aksum (Ethiopia). While Wein mines the inexhaustible treasury of Arthur, as she did in her first installment, The Winter Prince (1993), she makes it very new. Goewin, twin sister of Lleu, half-sister to Medraut, and daughter of Artos, high king of Britain, tells the story. After the deaths of her whole family, with Morgause, her father’s sister, calling for her own death, Goewin flees Britain for the court of Aksum in the company of the Aksum ambassador to Britain, Priamos. Her betrothed, Constantine, is Britain’s ambassador to Aksum, as Medraut was before him. Goewin can call Constantine home to Britain to assume the throne; she finds him harsh and unkind, though a good leader. In Aksum, she also finds Telemakos, the child who combines Medraut’s white-gold hair with the copper skin of his mother, and the preternatural calm intelligence of both parents. Constantine treats Priamos with fear, and Goewin uses what power she can wield to protect both him and the child, but not to her desired ends. Readers will eagerly await the next in Wein’s cycle. (maps, glossary, historical note, list of characters) (Historical fiction. 12+)