Warrior Scarlet ISBN: 9780374482442
Published by Farrar, Straus & Giroux Inc, 1974
This classic novel, first published in the 1950s, is a beautifully written evocation of life in the Bronze Age. The hero, Drem, is 9 years old when the story begins, and although he has had a withered and useless right arm since birth, he is convinced that he will kill his wolf and attain the 'warrior scarlet', his tribes recognition of manhood. It is only when he overhears his mother and grandfather talking about him that he realises that me may have a physical problem in doing so. The book covers his determination as he develops, and his growing ability with the spear as a bow and arrow are impossible for him to use. He and Vortrex, the Chieftain's son, become 'blood brothers', and both are sure they will overcome all difficulties in their striving to win the warrior scarlet. Drem's problems are not made light of, and he must fulfill many dangerous and heart-breaking situations before attaining his dream. There is a gentle love affair towards the end of the book, but the huge strength of this novel is in the adventure story and in the skillful weaving through it of life the way it was lived during the Bronze Age - woven so well that one is not aware of being taught a history lesson. Drem is a wonderful role model for any child.