THE CROW GODDESS by Patricia Finney
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Finney splendidly continues the fabulous gallop through Roman Britain begun in A Shadow of Gulls (1977). As readers of that spirited volume will remember, Lugh, the Irish master harper, was made Corn King by Queen Maeve of Connaught, escaped being killed in the usual fertility rite by getting lamed, took refuge with the Sidhe (here Bronze-Age Picts, who coexist with Iron-Age Celts like Lugh), and escaped to Roman Britain. Now Finney gives us the story of Lugh's blood-brotherhood with Roman prefect Julius Karus, whose defeat and capture by Cuchullain he nonetheless conspires in; of his perilous return to Erin to save Cuchullain from Queen Maeve; of his love for the touch-me-not Druidess Liath Duv; and of his fearful bondage to the incarnation of the Corn Goddess, which can be severed only by one of their deaths. All of which is told with a delightful plenitude of songs, jokes, and details anthropological, historical, mythical, and literary. Those who like that sort of mixture should all come running, for Finney looks fair to becoming--amid some pretty stiff competition--ancient Britain's Mary Renault.

Pub Date: March 30th, 1979
Publisher: Putnam