Dickinson, John. The cup of the world.

Author:Rosser, Claire
Position:Young Adult Review - Book Review

DICKINSON, John. The cup of the world. Random House, David Fickling Books. 419p. map. c2004. 0-385-75025-0. $15.95. JS

Dickinson never fails to give readers challenging, complex fantasies; this is such a one. It is set in a world of feudal fiefdoms around a great lake, ruled over by a king. There are frequent skirmishes between the feudal lords as they jockey for power and prestige. Dickinson focuses on Phaedra, a young woman presented to the king in the first chapters. Because Phaedra is beautiful and also the sole heir of her father's lands, she is much sought after as a bride; even the royal family considers her for marriage. She evades all suitors, listening to the voice of an unknown man she hears in her dreams. At the point when she no longer can avoid marriage, this unknown person arranges to meet her outside her father's fortress. He turns out to be the head of a ruling family who are known as outlaws--Ulfin is his name, and she loves him and believes he loves her. They are married in a ceremony by a strange priest, and within weeks, Ulfin is off to fight, leaving Phaedra behind in a strange place, isolated and pregnant.

This is a lengthy book...

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