A desperate village. A child who emerges from the marshes. A falcon that helps her save them all.
The child - if child it was - came out of the wild-ness. It came out of the sparse bleak marsh where few dared go and none came back. And though the village grew accustomed to the creature they did not forget from whence it came. And they whispered that there was no knowing whether she was sent as a blessing or a bane.'
When the child emerges from the wilderness, no one in the village knows what to do with her. She is odd - half-wild, without speech and seems to have an unnatural bond with animals - especially the falcon, who is always circling above her. The Wise-Woman takes her in, and names her Rhodd, but the rest of the villagers remain suspicious.
Over the years, as Rhodd grows, the village realises that the river, which is their connection to the wider world, is beginning to die, and eventually a dark sickness begins to spread. Soon, too soon, the villagers turn their suspicion on Rhodd and her falcon.
And so, Rhodd sets out to discover what - or who - is causing the river to dry up . . . to protect her mother, her falcon and herself...
A beautiful and enthralling adventure about love, belonging, the delicate balance of nature - and the wildness within us all, for fans of The Last Wild and Where the Crawdads Sing, for 9+ readers.
Penny has worked as a television news journalist for most of her career, after starting work in Fleet Street. She's based in Kent and now writes full time.More about Penny Chrimes