A novel based on the life and campaigns of Boudicca, Queen of the Iceni. When the Roman Emperor Nero rules that the royal line of the Iceni is to be ended, Boudicca knows that this is one battle she cannot afford to lose. Rosemary Sutcliff won the 1959 Carnegie Medal for "The Lantern Bearers".
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Rosemary Sutcliff, who died in 1992, was Britain's best-loved writer of historical fiction for children--sometimes shading into borderline fantasy. Song of a Dark Queen (1978) retells the story of Queen Boadicea or Boudicca and her bloodthirsty uprising in AD 60 against the Roman occupation of Britain. Emperor Nero's excesses demanded that every last drop of tribute be squeezed from Roman colonies: the semi-independent state of Boadicea's tribe the Iceni was annexed and plundered, and her daughters raped. As recorded by Tacitus and shudderingly mentioned in Lindsey Davis's "Falco" novels, her revenge was terrible. This story of the queen's life and doomed rebellion is told by her harper, who both understands the agony that drives her and is horrified by a slaughter which doesn't spare women or children. Nor does Sutcliff spare younger readers the atrocities, however delicately understated. In Boadicea's earlier, happier days there are rich evocations of Iceni life, customs and conversations, with unobtrusively Celtic speech-patterns. Resonant imagery continues through the approach of war, the omens of doom--our fey queen sees a river running with blood, perhaps only reflected sunset--and the final clash with Rome's implacable military machine. A moving story, and not just for children. -- David LangfordBook Description:
An epic historical tale from the acclaimed award-winning author, Rosemary Sutcliff.
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Book Description Red Fox, 1996. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P11009952791X