by Ann Lawrence
A humorous fantasy tale set in ancient Britain. Iscium, an isolated Roman town in the west of Britain, is cut off from the collapsing Empire. Most of the town senators and officials are primarily concerned with keeping a low profile with the neighboring barbarians and renovating the city baths--with the exception of the crotchety old bishop. But when young Falx runs away, and finds a lost barbarian girl, things begin to happen. The children are brought back by a one-eyed merchant who returns them to an Iscium quivering with the possibility of a barbarian invasion. The mysterious merchant has a plan--involving two talking ravens and The Hallelujah Chorus--and life is never quite the same again, for either the Romans or their invaders. A zany mix of history, humor, and the miraculous--in the satisfying tradition of Don Camillo.
Ages 14 and up.