Mother of Kings
By Poul Anderson
As a child of just seven summers, Gunnhild finds herself fascinated with the powers of a witch-woman who is a concubine of her father's, a powerful Norse chieftain. She also finds another fascination in handsome and lordly Eirik, son of their king. When her mother dies, Gunnhild promises, "I will never yield", and that, "through me, our blood shall flow greatly".
Gunnhild has learned from her chieftain father the way the powerful use the weak. But there are other lessons and other power she seeks. Sent away to learn the magic of a pair of shamans, Gunnhild becomes a Spaewife - a knower of the Gods, a master in the ways of witchcraft and sorcery. Aided by her new abilities, Gunnhild marries Eirik. She is destined to become queen, and her magic is a fearsome complement to Eirik's strength. But Eirik's enemies are cunning, and Gunnhild is soon without his might.
If Gunnhild can keep the promise she made as a child to never yield, her family's blood will flow greatly, and the sons she bore Eirik will each become a king.
Her own struggles, though, are far from over...
Poul Anderson (1926 - 2001)
Poul William Anderson was born in Pennsylvania to Scandinavian parents. His family lived for a time in Denmark but moved back to the United States after the outbreak of the Second World War. They settled in Minnesota, where Anderson received a degree in physics from the University of Minnesota.
Anderson began writing while still an undergraduate and published his first story in 1947. He was active throughout the second half of the twentieth century, producing such classic works as the Dominic Flandry books and The High Crusade, and winning multiple Hugo and Nebula awards. He has served as President of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America and was a founding member of the Society for Creative Anachronism. In 1998 he was named an SFWA Grand Master. He collaborated regularly with wife, Karen, and their daughter is married to noted SF writer Greg Bear. Poul Anderson died in July 2001.
For more information see www.sf-encyclopedia.com/entry/anderson_poul
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- Publication date:
24 Sep 2013
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