Edyth, wife of King Harold of England, disappeared forever on the day of the great Battle of Hastings in 1066, taking with her the legitimate heirs to the thrones of England and Wales. This is the story of that amazing woman, who loved and married the King of Wales and then the man who would be King of England, only to witness his historic defeat by the light of Halley's Comet.
Raised in the lush landscape of East Anglia, the daughter of an earl and descended from the beautiful -- if immodest -- Lady Godiva, the young Edyth has no dreams of a noble groom. She longs to preserve her life exactly as it is, until her Saxon father Aelfgar is outlawed by King Edward's Danish-run council, and her life begins to change with great rapidity.
After taking sanctuary in Ireland, Aelfgar manages to find suitable allies and regain his title. In the process, Edyth is betrothed to the chiefest ally, Griffith, prince of Wales. Despite numerous misgivings, Edyth -- soon going by her Welsh name, Aldith -- learns to admire her new Celtic countrymen and, indeed, to love her husband. For several years she is content to raise children (three) and give only minor worries to Griffith's continuing struggle against the Saxon throne. But eventually it catches up to them; their home is burned, their allies dissolve away and, soon enough, Griffith himself is captured and killed by the Saxons in Harold Godwine's name.
Godwine is soon to become England's King Harold, and he solidifies his influence by marrying Griffith's distraught widow. She certainly does not love him -- only fear for the safety of her children by Griffith convinces her to mouth the necessary words at the wedding -- but she does gradually come to respect him, his leadership and his dream of a united England.
But then Harald Hardraada of Norway invades England. And William the Bastard (a.k.a. "the Conqueror") of Normandy pushes his claim for the throne....
New York-born author Morgan Llywelyn is one of the world's leading popular chroniclers of Celtic culture and history. A prolific storyteller, she has written more than twenty books over the past two decades. Her fiction has received several awards and has sold more than 40 million copies, and she herself is recipient of the 1999 Exceptional Celtic Woman of the Year Award from Celtic Women International.
In the words of Judith A. Gifford of the reference publication Twentieth-Century Romance and Historical Writers, "Drawing on the history and lore that are part of her own heritage, the works of Morgan Llywelyn concern themselves with Celtic heroes and heroines, both real and mythical, bringing them and the times they inhabited to life with stunning clarity." Pauline Morgan, writing in the St. James Guide to Fantasy Writers, has explained, "[t]he majority of Morgan Llywelyn's books may be regarded as fictional biographies. Each book takes a person, often historical or legendary, and relates the story of their life. Most of the novels with a fantasy connection rely heavily on Celtic mythology, particularly that of the Irish.
Morgan Llywelyn now lives outside of Dublin, Ireland, and has become an Irish citizen.