Halli Sveinsson has grown up in the House of Svein, listening to the legends of the heroes as all his forefathers did. His is a peaceful society where the violence of the past has been outlawed and disputes are settled by the Council. But young Halli has never quite seemed to fit in with the others. For starters, he was not at all handsome or tall, like his attractive blond siblings. He's stumpy and swarthy, with a quick mind and aptitude for getting in trouble.
"To Emulate or Escape from (Swinish) Heroes--"
Halli loves the old stories from when the valley was a wild and dangerous place - when the twelve legendary heroes, led by his ancestor Svein, stood together to defeat the ancient enemy, the bloodthirsty Trows. Halli longs for adventure but it seems these days the most dangerous thing in the valley is boredom. He tries to liven things up by taunting his siblings and playing practical jokes. But when one of his jokes goes too far reawakening an old blood feud Halli finds himself on a hero's quest after all.
The author of The Bartimaeus Trilogy discusses his new novel with Matthew Cody (author of the upcoming book Powerless) that follows a young shepherd on a hero's quest. Along the way he encounters highway robbers, terrifying monsters, and the truth about the legends he grew up listening to. Co-presented with Bank Street Bookstore.
Gunnar Knox is on his second tour in Iraq when he gets an unexpected lifeline in the form of letters from a stranger, Pastor Trace Atwell. After six months of correspondence, the letters from the pastor stop coming. The last letter contains a family picture of the pastor, his wife and their son and an invitation to come and visit them at their farm when Gunnar's tour is up.