Arafel's Saga by C. J. Cherryh (1983)

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Arafel's Saga
by C. J. Cherryh

Publisher:  Nelson Doubleday, Inc.
Copyright:  1983

Book Club Edition

In Arafel's Saga, Hugo-winning author C. J. Cherryh transports us to the world of Celtic myth to weave the tale of the last of the Elves and how she becomes caught up in the affairs of humankind.

Arafel lives alone in Ealdwood, the sole remaining portion of the great magical forest that once covered the Earth.  It was humanity that sounded the death knell of Arafel's kind on Earth, for with their implements of iron -- a substance Elves find painful to touch -- men drove back the forest and defeated the Elves who attempted to stop them.  Now, as the only one of her kind, Arafel has as little as possible to do with men.

Yet, when Niall Dubhlachan ventures into Ealdwood, Arafel finds herself acting to help him.  Once a warrior loyal to the old, now-deposed and murdered king, Niall is an outcast, a wanderer waiting for the day when the king's child, the True King, will come out of hiding to reclaim the throne from the evil usurper Evald.  All Niall hopes for in the meantime is to survive, perhaps to find a haven from the wars and deceits which have plagued his land.  On impulse, Arafel decides to send Niall to the haven of Beorc's Steading, where wounded creatures come for succor.  Content there, Niall settles down to live out his life in its peaceful shelter.

But peace does not last long for either of them.  When the True King rises to fight for his heritage, Niall must, unwillingly, return again to his fellow men.  This king, however, is not the leader Niall had hoped for.  Under his reign, dark things begin to appear in the world of men -- and Arafel finds she cannot abandon the man she had once befriended, or his descendants.  It is they who, with her help, will face a long-forgotten danger from the days when Elves ruled the Earth . . . in a war that could bring final destruction upon Ealdwood and the world of men alike.

Here is fantasy and adventure at its best, a saga of a world completely imagined and brilliantly described; a tale of a magical creature joining with men to fight for the survival of their world.  A two-in-one volume containing The Dreamstone and The Tree of Swords and Jewels.

Condition:  Used.  Hardcover.  Dust cover is lightly discolored and shows shelf wear and scuffing.  Pages may be tanning from age.  Previous owner's "Library Of" stamp is on the front endpaper.

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    • ISBN B00005VFB6
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