Rosemary's Sutcliff's absorbing collection of stories cover the fall of Londinium to the building of Hadrian's Wall, and the final departure of the Romans from Britain. Set at the time of the Roman occupation of Britain, they follow the fortunes of one family over three hundred years. All soldiers, they are linked by the Capricorn bracelet, first worn by the centurion Lucius for distinguished conduct, then handed down through the generations.
Rosemary Sutcliff was born in Surrey, the daughter of a naval officer. At the age of two she contracted the progressively wasting Still's disease, and hence spent most of her life in a wheelchair. Her first children's book was published in 1950, and from then on she devoted her time and talents to the writing of children's historical novels, which have placed her name high in the field of contemporary children's literature. Rosemary received an OBE in the 1975 Birthday Honours List.
Rosemary Sutcliff's novels about Roman Britain have won much critical acclaim. The best-known of these is her The Eagle of the Ninth trilogy, of which the second book in the trilogy, The Lantern Bearers, was awarded the 1959 Carnegie Medal.
Sadly, Rosemary died in 1992 at the age of 72.