The Bastard Prince (Heirs of Saint Camber)

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9780345391773: The Bastard Prince (Heirs of Saint Camber)

THE PRINCES IN THE TOWER

The power-hungry former Regents of the three Haldane princes were pleased. They controlled Gwynedd once more, now that Rhys Michael was king--malleable, wine-loving, and soft. Or so they thought...
Unbeknownst to the Regents, Rhys Michael was coming into his birthright. With secret Deryni aid, he struggled to grasp the magic bequeathed to all anointed kings. And when Marek--heir to Gwynedd's last degenerate deposed Deryni despots--marched into Gwynedd at the head of an army, even the Regents had to admit that Rhys Michael must take to the field himself as king to repel the pretender.
Rhys Michael saw his chance at last. He swore that the power of the throne--from now on and for all time to come--was to be held by Gwynedd's rightful king. For this, for his sons, and for his country, the king would risk all...
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From Kirkus Reviews:

Final installment (The Harrowing of Gwynedd, 1989; King Javan's Year, 1992) of bestselling author Kurtz's latest fantasy trilogy set in the medieval, Celtic-flavored kingdom of Gwynedd chronicling the power struggle between the enlightened Haldane kings, with their magic-powered Deryni allies, and the forces of oppression, malevolence, and darkness. For six years, following the treacherous murder of his brother Javan, King Rhys Michael--feigning wine-soaked mediocrity--has been the puppet of the merciless Archbishop Hubert MacInnis and his self-proclaimed ruling Regents' Council. But then the pretender to Gwynedd's throne, Marek of Festil, provocatively attacks and occupies a remote border castle, and Rhys Michael sees an opportunity to assert his independence. Meanwhile, his hidden Deryni allies prepare to overthrow the Regents. Rhysel, a Deryni posing as Queen Michaela's maid, awakens Rhys Michael's latent Deryni powers before the King rides forth to confront the Deryni- powered Marek. In the subsequent magical duel, Rhys Michael sustains a hand injury which, denied proper Deryni healing, festers. Foreseeing his own death, he prepares a decree commanding loyal Kheldour lords to protect his infant son, Owain. Sure enough, the Regents suspect Rhys Michael of plotting against them. The big question, then: Can the Kheldour lords and their covert Deryni allies thwart the ruling Regents and save Owain? A satisfying conclusion with a persuasively grim backdrop, well-controlled fantasy elements, a solid cast, and realistically medieval dark plots and foul deeds. -- Copyright ©1994, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

From Publishers Weekly:

A small band of rebels attempts to overcome a tyranny of church and corrupt nobility in the rousing and tragic conclusion to Kurtz's fourth Deryni trilogy. When Marek of Festil, the bastard son of Gwynedd's last Deryni king, makes a move to gain the throne, the ruling council reluctantly allows King Rhys Michael to meet the challenge. (Having held the young man and his wife, Michaela, in their grip since arranging the deaths of his two older brothers, the nobles and high churchmen fear an assertion of independence before the king fathers a second child to assure the succession.) As Rhys Michael travels to Culliecairn to meet with Marek, another group of the now-proscribed Deryni seek to awaken the psychic powers of the king and queen through Michaela's young maid, Liesel. With strong characterizations and sustained tension, this volume once again reflects the atmospheric gloom of a dark and secret land, full of treachery and cruelty but shot through with light and a promise of hope.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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