Dido Twite's back in a larky adventure story that boasts a free and spirited adaptation of Arthurian legend and a generous supply of menace and chills. After Night-birds on Nantucket, before The Cuckoo Tree, Dido falls into New Cumbria (near Brazil) where, as Aiken plots it, the ancient Britons relocated when the Saxons invaded hundreds of years before. The natives speak in fractured Latin and allude to strange local practices which Dido and her sailing companions don't grasp fully until almost too late. In the meantime, she avoids man-eating fish, fights off cannibal birds, escapes from kidnappers, and outwits the 1300-year-old queen, Ginevra, who prolongs her own life, in wait for the return of the Pendragon, by consuming the ground bones of young girls. Aiken manages the language and lesser details with ease and plunks down on her imaginary landscape quirky, unmatched characters as well as that sword in the stone. As Dido would have it, "There's one as'l bear watching."