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Dreamer’s Pool

In the most recent trilogy by Juliet Marillier, Blackthorn & Grim begins with Dreamer’s Pool, the first volume following two emotionally scarred protagonists, healer and wise-woman, Blackthorn and the mysterious Grim, escapees from a prison and injustices of Mathuin of Laois. The unlikely rescuing of Blackthorn, and incidentally Grim, is orchestrated by Conmael, a member of the Fey. Conmael places strict conditions on Blackthorn’s freedom: for seven years, she must not return to Laois to confront Mathuin but must reside in Dalriada and accept all requests made of her. Blackthorn travels to Winterfalls in Dalriada with Grim, who has made himself Blackthorn’s protector. The pair settle at Dreamer’s Wood on the estate of crown-prince Oran of Dalriada. Soon, Blackthorn and Grim are drawn into solving a mystery involving Dreamer’s Pool, a well-known local area for the Fey and uncanny transformations. While solving the mystery closely involving Prince Oran and his new bride, Lady Flidas, Blackthorn and Grim begin to heal from the traumas of prison and torture, deeply bound together by trust and friendship. ​​Dreamer’s Pool is a retelling of the classic tales of the Fey and physical transformations but a dark under-current pervades the story in which the Fey are neither just nor unjust and the human world is as perilous.