One of England's finest authors turns her hand to a re-telling of the Cuchulain Saga with less success than in any previous work. Cuchulain, hero of the Celts, is less than a god, more than a man. When the battle frenzy comes upon him, the Hero light blazes upon his brow and a jet of black blood shoots skyward to form a fearsome cloud above his head. His deeds are mighty; the red blood of his enemies flows through the pages. But somehow, Cuchulain never comes to life; his deeds never seem worth doing. Perhaps the need to understate the adventures (Cuchulain is rarely an admirable hero) accounts for the flatness of the prose, for the interjection of the story of "Deirdre and the Sons of Usna," is much more vital. Whatever the reason, the book seems overlong and the battles become dull rather than horrendous. More for the librarian's background than for the children themselves.