'Six enchanted Signs of the Light, a golden grail, a wonderful harp, a crystal sword … They are all achieved now but the harp and the sword, and I do not know what will be the manner of the sword’s finding. But the quest for the harp is mine …'
Winner of the Newbery Medal
Will Stanton has been sent to Wales to recover from a serious illness. He desperately wishes to recover something else - the secret of the grail, which he once knew but has now forgotten. His Welsh cousins are welcoming, but there is menace in the form of their neighbour Caradoc Prichard, who is strangely curious about Will’s visit. Soon Will must face his most dangerous adversary yet: Brenin Lwyd, the Grey King, who dwells at the summit of Cader Idris. Aiding him is Bran Davies, a strange white-haired boy with his own destiny to fulfil.
The spectacular Dysynni Valley in Gwynedd, north-west Wales, forms the setting of this fourth adventure in the sequence. In a new preface, Susan Cooper describes how her Welsh ancestry, and her love of Welsh epics, found their way into The Grey King through 'that peculiar alchemy that happens in the unconscious mind of a writer … Above all, I owe The Grey King to the power that's been singing for centuries out of the land itself; the ancient, haunted mountains and valleys of Cymru, Wales.' With their muted palette of greys, blues, greens and golds, Laura Carlin’s illustrations are deeply effective. The sequence is notable for being honoured twice by the Newbery Awards - America’s most prestigious prize for children’s literature
Read more about the life and work of Susan Cooper
Review by SGearing on 25th Dec 2012
"I now have all 5 and I'm glad :) They really are very nice, and the illustrations match my favourite parts (in all the books). As you can see from some of the pics on the product page, the illustratio..." [read more]