Rosemary Sutcliff’s historical novel for children (“of all ages 8 to 88”) Dawn Wind is being republished. The cover proofs arrived recently. Happily OUP are able to use the original Charles Keeping picture.
Dawn Wind involves the last Roman-British wearer of the dolphin ring which features in several Rosemary Sutciff historical novels. Owain is the only survivor of a Viking raid and the great battle of Aquae Sulis. Just fourteen years old, his father and brother die at the battle but he eventually makes his way to a peaceful Saxon settlement where he is made thrall to a Saxon family. Travelling there he meets a half-wild girl whom he cares for but is forced to leave behind when she falls ill. They meet up again after many years apart, still so in tune with each other that they are able to understand each other’s wordless messages. During his years of service he discovers understanding and even friendship, and loyalty for the people who were once his enemies. His freedom earned, he shoulders the weight of the Saxon household rather than betray a promise to his former master.