Fourth volume of Eickhoff's Ulster Cycle, begun with The Raid (1997). This installment is an informal translation of the Irish classic Togail Bruidne Dá Derga, now inflated with extra detail, sexual nuances, and booming voices in sometimes bawdy dialogue. Prose passages are often given wings by alternating with Eickhoff's rhymed, clear-spoken modern verse (terrific verse that may remind some of Seamus Heaney's brookwater Anglo-Saxon in his recent Beowulf). These mystical eruptions, which occur during druidic or visionary moments, suggest in the author's view that the inn destroyed is not a real inn but actually belongs in the Otherworld.
Sprawling and wonderful, without a single hint of Irish sentimentality. (Notes, appendices, footnotes, and some verse translations side by side with the original eighth-century verse.)