It is, perhaps, the fifteenth century and the ordered tranquillity of a Mediterranean island is about to be shattered by the appearance of two outsiders: one, a castaway, plucked from the sea by fishermen, whose beliefs represent a challenge to the established order; the other, a child abandoned by her mother and suckled by wolves, who knows nothing of the precarious relationship between Church and State but whose innocence will become the subject of a dangerous experiment.
But the arrival of the Inquisition on the island creates a darker, more threatening force which will transform what has been a philosophical game of chess into a matter of life and death...
"'A compelling medieval fable, written from the heart and melded to a driving narrative which never once loses its tremendous pace'"
"'An irresistible blend of intellect and passion'"
"'This remarkable novel resembles an illuminated manuscript mapped with angels and mountains and signposts, an allegory for today and yesterday too. A beautiful, unsettling moral fiction about virtue and intolerance'"
"'Remarkable...Utterly absorbing...richly detailed and finely imagined'"
"'The lucidity of Jill Paton Walsh's style and the dexerity of the narrative are such that her book reads more like a good thriller than a weighty novel of ideas...An ingenious fable'"