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CHILD OF THE MAY by Theresa Tomlinson

CHILD OF THE MAY

By Theresa Tomlinson

Age Range: 10 - 14

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1998
ISBN: 0-531-30118-4
Publisher: Orchard

Revisiting the scene of The Forestwife (1995), Tomlinson continues to recast the Robin Hood legend from the perspectives of strong women who play major roles in the action. Magda, 15, is a Child of the May_conceived at the May festival by John and her mother, Emma, the latter of whom was murdered by an evil mercenary. She is bored and wants to see a world beyond the forest clearing where she lives with the elderly Marian, a healer and the woman who loves Robert, a moody, hooded hero who moves mysteriously through the country, and who delights in plots and plans to defeat his enemies. Magda gets her wish when John lets her masquerade as a boy, on a mission to bring home two ladies held for ransom at the sheriff's castle. Danger and unpredictability follow; Magda soon longs for the warmth and quiet of home, but as adventures ensue, she is a crucial cog in the fight for noble ladies and against the fearful mercenaries. She misreads some people and situations: subtle hints point out that she is mistaken to fear an ill, abandoned boy, and that she is sure to end up with Tom, her brave and patient suitor. She overcomes these mistakes and joyfully fulfills her destiny of becoming, someday, the forestwife. Tomlinson's language creates a powerful mood; readers will hope for more news of Magda, with her courage, strength, and skills. (Fiction. 10-14)