URN BURIAL by Robert Westall


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Alien menace overcome in the north of England. The burial urn of Prepoc, greatest warrior of the Fefethil (cat people sworn to preserve all life, including even the barbaric ape-people of Earth), is disturbed after many years by the shepherd Ralph. Its opening draws the voracious Wawaka, dog people nearly as vicious as man--although they never destroy their own kind. Ralph and his friend Ruby become pawns in the straggle between the Fefethil and Wawaka, discovering a treasure trove of Fefethil technology and barely escaping with their lives. But thanks to a clever ruse on Ralph's part, the Wawaka are finally driven off, earning Ralph--and mankind--the Fefethii's respect. Another good, strong story from Westall, expertly weaving suspense, science fiction, and allegory into an entertaining whole. Ralph and Ruby, Ralph's feisty mother, and even poor Postie (who is destroyed by the Wawaka) emerge as real and sympathetic people. Some British usage, more entertaining than distracting.

Pub Date: April 18th, 1988
Page count: 170pp
Publisher: Greenwillow