CHAINS OF GOLD by Nancy Springer


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More romantic fantasy from the author of Wings of Flame (1984). Lady Cerilla is destined to wed Arlen, the Winterking; after the wedding Arlen will be flayed and killed as part of the bloody goddess-worshipping rites. But the pair fall in love at first sight, and so determine to flee; Arlen's best friend, Lonn, with some magical help, will take Arlen's place as the sacrifice. The escape is successful, but soon the couple become aware that Lonn's ghost is following them. As they hurry into the mountains, pursued by vengeful minions of the goddess, the ghost proves helpful, sometimes, but more often a nuisance. In a sheltered valley the couple set up housekeeping, and in due course a son is born. The child, alas, is at once possessed by Lonn, now mad and refusing to be cast forth. Advised by an oracle, Cerilla abandons the baby, but then suffers guilt-pangs, and leaves Arlen to go and consult the goddess. Strengthened by the meeting, Cerilla summons the courage to confront Lonn, now magically grown into a beautiful youth and frothing with lust for Cerilla, Admonished, Lonn at last sees the error of his ways and duly gives up the ghost; Cerilla and Arlen get their baby back and everything ends happily. Despite some inconsistencies in the backdrop: well-paced, decorous, and modestly involving, with lots of YA appeal.

Pub Date: Aug. 25th, 1986
Publisher: Arbor House