Marshmallow’s Quick Take: If you enjoyed reading the previous books in The Dark Is Rising series, then this might be the book for you.
There is a Welsh legend about a harp of gold, hidden within a certain hill, that will be found by a boy and a white dog with silver eyes–a dog that can see the wind. Will Stanton knows nothing of this when he comes to Wales to recover from a severe illness.from the back cover of The Grey King by Susan Cooper
Marshmallow’s Summary (with Spoilers): Will Stanton, an Old One, has lost his memory. He is sent to Wales, to live with his mother’s cousin for a little bit, because he is supposed to be healed by the sea air. When he gets to Wales, he meets a lot of people. One of the people he meets is not a nice person. Caradog Prichard is a cruel man who dislikes everyone. But on the brighter side, Will also meets Bran. Bran is very pale as he is an albino. His skin and hair are white, but his eyes are gold. Caradog Prichard is blaming Bran’s dog, Cafall, constantly, because Caradog Prichard thinks that Cafall is killing his sheep. When Will meets Bran and starts to talk to him, Will starts to get his memory back. He remembers that he is an Old One, and he remembers his previous quests. And he realizes that Bran is “the raven boy” from this prophecy:
“On the day of the dead, when the year too dies, Must the youngest open the oldest hills Through the door of the birds, where the wind breaks. There fire shall fly from the raven boy, And the silver eyes that see the wind, And the Light shall have the harp of gold.”
The prophecy continues, but I won’t write all of it. But even when Will recognizes Bran in the prophecy, there is more about Bran than what he can know: Bran’s past is not what it seems. As Will discovers more about Bran, he uncovers a shocking truth. Do Bran’s roots come from the Light or from the Dark?
Marshmallow’s Review: I think that this was a very interesting book because the plot is very surprising. I wasn’t able to guess Bran’s background; it was so surprising.
I think that this would be a good book for 8 and up. This is not because it is scary, but because the plot might confuse younger readers.
I think that if you want to read this book alone, that’s fine, but I would suggest reading the previous books too. Also you might want to know a little bit about King Arthur, just a vague idea of his life. I should add that Sprinkles says The Grey King is her favorite from this series so far.
Marshmallow’s Rating: 95%.