Marie Heaney's splendid retelling of these great Irish wonder tales is especially timely. It is in the nature of this material that it must be retold, if not actually reinterpreted, for each new generation of readers. Marie Heaney chooses a plain modern style, close to the spoken voice, yet supple enough to meet the high moments of narrative. Those who have missed out on these legends at school have now a brilliant chance to retrieve those losses. These legends are the action-packed stories-of ancient heroes, huge battles, attempted invasions, prophecies and spells, clashes between the under world and the real world, abductions, love affairs and feasts-which have fascinated the Irish mind for more than 2,000 years...Most of them have an extraordinary, stark narrative sweep, with a marvellous sense of detail...Heaney writes directly and fluently.. with great tact and skill.