On the Eve of the Fourth Millennium a slowly-building civilization, struggling out of the rubble of the Drowning, was crushed beneath the sceptre of a powerful and repressive Church. But on the Eve of the Fourth Millennium the sound of a magical pipe was heard, and the air was filled with songs of freedom and enlightenment. And on the Eve of the Fourth Millennium the Boy appeared, bringing the gift of sacrilege, a harbinger of the future, heralding the arrival of the White Bird of Dawning. It is the coming of a New Age. A glorious future bearing the presents of the past!
Richard Cowper (1926 - 2002)
Born John Middleton Murry, Jnr, the son of writer John Middleton Murry, Richard Cowper was the pseudonym under which most of his science fiction was published (he wrote four novels under the name 'Colin Murry'). He served in the Royal Navy during the Second World War, although he as lucky enough not to see combat. After the war, he read Anglo-Saxon and English at Oxford. His works were shortlisted for the Hugo, Nebula, British Fantasy and Locus Awards. He died in 2002, four weeks after the death of his wife.