Stephen R. Lawhead (1950-) was born in Kearney, Nebraska, the son of Robert Lawhead and Lois Bissell Lawhead. He graduated from Kearney State College in 1973 with a BA in art. Lawhead then enrolled in Northern Baptist Theological Seminary, and also at Wheaton College to take courses in writing. In 1986, he moved to England in order to do research for a series of novels about the legend of King Arthur, The Pendragon Cycle. Stephen Lawhead’s other works include The Song of Albion and the King Raven trilogy.
The following is an excerpt from Taleisin, the first book in The Pendragon Cycle.
“The Realm of Summer”
I have seen a land shining with goodness where each man protects his brother’s dignity as readily as his own, where war and want have ceased and all races live under the same law of love and honor.
I have seen a land bright with truth, where a man’s word is his pledge and falsehood is banished, where children sleep safe in their mother’s arms and never know fear or pain.
I have seen a land where kings extend their hands in justice rather than reach for the sword, where mercy, kindness, and compassion flow like deep water over the land, and men revere virtue, revere truth, revere beauty, above comfort, pleasure, or selfish gain.
A land where peace reigns in the hearts of men, where faith blazes like a beacon from every hill, and love warms like a fire from every hearth.”