Nicola Griffith (Hild) draws on legend, myth and history in Spear, an Arthurian-inspired novella centered on tales of Peretur, one of the legendary Knights of the Round Table. Peretur was once a girl with no name, loved by her mother and hidden in a protected cave in the woods. But gradually, the "urge to roam increased upon her like thirst" until it came time for her to leave her home and explore the world, no longer protected by her mother's wards or the cover of secrecy. In the wilds of the world, Peretur takes refuge in the guise of a man and is soon drawn into the circle of Arturus's court.

Griffith deftly weaves tales of the Tuath Dé and their coveted objects of power with legends of Camelot and Arthur's court. What emerges from these threads is a lush and lyrical story, steeped in the historical details of sixth-century Wales and the unreliable, if plentiful, Arthurian legends. In Griffith's capable hands, this fuel fires a beautiful, atmospheric novella, a queer retelling of an age-old myth that is a wonder to behold. --Kerry McHugh, freelance writer

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