Geatland in the first decades of the sixth century was an island of peace amid the upheaval which marked the death throes of the Roman Empire in the West. Under the benevolent rule of King Hrethel and his sons the King’s grandchild, Beowulf, the only child of his daughter, is carefully groomed by the family in the skills and duties of the warrior elite.
As Beowulf reaches adulthood a death suddenly tears the family apart. Torn between family loyalties and the freshly sworn demands of his warrior code, Beowulf must choose between those he loves and his personal ambition as the dynasty begins to tear itself apart. Sensing weakness the Geats most feared enemy appears on their northern border and Beowulf must fight his first desperate battle to save the Kingdom.
Skilfully interwoven into the fabric of the old English poem we know as ‘Beowulf’ lies the tale of a great but ultimately doomed people, the Geats. It is a tale of decay and renewal as the old order is swept away and the new nations of Europe struggle to emerge from the ensuing chaos in an age when it was common for Kings to die in battle. Sword of Woden, Sorrow Hill, is the first in a trilogy of novels which seek to unravel the threads contained within the original poem by recounting the early life story of Beowulf and his family.