Along an isolated shoreline, a brutal rape is committed. The rape, which results in pregnancy, steals the girl's sanity and unleashes a chain of events that will topple thrones.
Branwyn, granddaughter of Melvig ap Melwy, king of the Deceangli tribe, rescues a man from the sea, and dreaming that he is a gift for her, she secretly tends to his wounds. But the eerily beautiful man violently turns on her. Claiming that she was raped by a demon, Branwyn gives birth to her son but immediately rejects him. Her mother, Olwyn, priestess to the goddess Ceridwen, raises the boy as her own, dedicating him to, and naming him for, the sun god: Myrddion. So, Myrddion (Merlin) begins his life, bullied for being a Demon’s Seed yet destined for greatness. Myrddion is apprenticed to Annwynn, a healer, and he quickly shows his skill. Yet the greed of others will push Myrddion into a pawn’s plight. Far away, the brutal High King of the northern Britons of Cymru, Vortigern, has been advised by his two sorcerers that only the blood of a Demon’s Seed can hold together the stones of his great tower at Dinas Emrys. Myrddion is seized and brought to the king by Saxon mercenaries. On his journey, he uses his skill as a healer to befriend the mercenaries, establishing a bond that will one day both save and brutalize lives. Navigating a world of battling tribes—Picts, Celts, Saxons and Romans—Myrddion encounters tyrants, rebels, healers and quacks. Hume (Prophesy: Death of an Empire, 2012, etc.) brings the bloody, violent, conniving world vividly to life.
Merlin’s story, in this first of The Merlin Prophesy trilogy (and previously published outside the United States as Prophesy: Clash of Kings), will appeal to those who thrill to Game of Thrones and other tales of intersecting, ever-warring, noble lineages.