Druids

Druids

4.4 14
by Morgan Llywelyn
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

“Mine was the vast dark sky and the spaces between the stars that called out to me; mine was the promise of magic.”

So spoke the young Celt Ainvar, centuries before the enchanted age of Arthur and Merlin. An orphan taken in by the chief druid of the Carnutes in Gaul, Ainvar possessed talents that would lead him to master the druid mysteries of

…  See more details below

Overview

“Mine was the vast dark sky and the spaces between the stars that called out to me; mine was the promise of magic.”

So spoke the young Celt Ainvar, centuries before the enchanted age of Arthur and Merlin. An orphan taken in by the chief druid of the Carnutes in Gaul, Ainvar possessed talents that would lead him to master the druid mysteries of thought, healing, magic, and battle— talents that would make him a soul friend to the Prince Vercingetorix . . . though the two youths were as different as fire and ice.

Yet Ainvar’s destiny lay with Vercingetorix, the sun-bright warrior-king. Together they traveled through bitter winters and starlit summers in Gaul, rallying the splintered Celtic tribes against the encroaching might of Julius Caesar and the soulless legions of Rome. . . .

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Splendid and compelling.”
—ANNE MCCAFFREY

“Llywelyn imaginatively and vividly portrays the druid rituals and their close ties to nature, and authentically depicts daily life among the Celts as well.”
—Publishers Weekly

“A masterpiece . . . From page one, the fires of your imagination will burn with a white heat. . . . Beware the druids! Unless you have twenty-four hours of non-stop reading time, don’t touch it. . . . Thumbs up. Five stars. Bravo.”
—Tulsa World

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Caesar's Gallic Wars are recounted from the viewpoint of the losers in this highly readable evocation of the culture of the European Celts. Ainvar of the Carnutes, a young orphan druid-in-training, receives instruction for the ``manmaking'' rituals with prince Vercingetorix of the Arverni, forging a bond that will later unite them in an effort to free Celtic Gaul from Roman domination. As young men they travel through the Province (southern France, long settled and ruled by Rome), the warrior studying military strategy, the priest observing the society and developing arguments against assimilation, which has proved tempting to many of the free Gauls. When Vercingetorix is king of the Arverni and Ainvar the chief druid, the two strive to unify the intensely individualistic, frequently warring and suspicious tribes, with little initial success. But when Gaius Julius Caesar, pro-consul of Rome, seizes on the migration of the Helvetii to escape German depredation as an excuse to take action against Free Gaul and the Germans, the other kings place themselves under the leadership of Vercingetorix, who mounts a swiftly moving campaign against enormous odds. Llywelyn ( Red Branch ) imaginatively and vividly portrays the druid rituals and their close ties to nature, and authentically depicts daily life among the Celts as well. (Mar.)
Library Journal
As every Latin student knows, ancient Gaul was divided into three parts, all conquered by Caesar. Llywelyn tells of that conquest from the viewpoint of the defeated Gauls. Her story is told by the Druid Ainvar, whose``soul friend'' Vercingetorix leads the Gauls in their doomed defense of freedom. Llywelyn is most successful in her evocation of Celtic culture and Druidic beliefs, based on harmony with nature. Once Caesar and Vercingetorix join battle, however, the story bogs down in endless marches, raids, and battles. The characters serve the needs of the plot admirably but are never fully fleshed out and compelling in their own right. Less successful than Llywelyn's earlier novels (e.g. Grania: She-King of the Irish Seas , LJ 3/1/86), this one is still likely to please those who enjoy meticulously crafted historical fiction.-- Beth Ann Mills, New Rochelle P.L., N.Y.
School Library Journal
YA-- Epic historical fiction. Ainvar, Chief Druid of the Sacred Grove in Gaul, narrates the story of young chief Vercingetorix's attempt to unify the Celts and defeat Julius Caesar and the invading Romans. Llywelyn explores the Druids' relationship to nature, juxtaposing it with the chaos of battle, the regimentation of the Roman army, and the inevitable destruction of Vercingetorix and his men. In addition to the rousing fight to the finish and the mystique of symbolic Druid rites, period artifacts such as a brooch to hold Ainvar's cape, a comb of bronze, and an amulet of gold are interwoven with daily activities. YAs who are fascinated with this era will devour this novel.-- Pam Spencer, Jefferson Sci-Tech, Alexandria, VA

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780804108447
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
11/28/1992
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
404
Product dimensions:
4.19(w) x 6.82(h) x 1.09(d)

Meet the Author

Morgan Llywelyn has been heralded as the high priestess of Celtic legend. She is the author of many novels, including the international bestseller Lion of Ireland, 1949: A Novel of the Irish Free State, The Wind from Hastings, and Red Branch. She lives in Ireland.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >