I would like to acknowledge and sincerely thank my collaborators in Cornwall:
Julie, Richard, and Tia Tamblyn of Botelet Farm, the stewards of ancient Bury Down, who provided such warm hospitality during my research visit and taught me about the ancient hillfort for which they are caretakers, historians, and educators.
Mary Jones, Chair of the Old Cornwall Society—historian, writer, and docent for the town of Lostwithiel—walked me through Restormel Castle, providing fascinating details on castle life, and held my feet to the fire when the descriptions in my early drafts went astray.
Church historian Carole Vivian took me to churches throughout Cornwall, teaching me about both the churches and the role of the Church in medieval life.
“If you’ve not included the Church," she said when we first sat down to talk, "you’ve missed the whole point.” To complete my education, she graciously took me and my accomplice, Jacqui Doran, to Tintagel and to the stone circles and holy wells that are hallmarks of mystical Cornwall.
Despite all this tutelage and my years of research into place and era, history buffs and careful readers will find some anachronisms and discrepancies in locations. These are my doing. I modernized language where needed for readability and fictionalized location to support the story. For these and any flat-out errors any readers detect, I take full responsibility.
This book benefited greatly from Stonecoast's workshops with my student colleagues, especially Andrea Lani, Richard Squires, Frank Ard, and Roberto Ortiz, and the faculty of the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast MFA program. I am especially grateful to authors Elizabeth Searle, Boman Desai, Dolen Perkins-Valdez, and David Anthony Durham, faculty mentors who inspired, nudged, critiqued, and encouraged me.
Peggy Di Pastina, Jacqui Doran, Cindy Duda, and Mary Jones read the book's early drafts and offered the impressions, suggestions, and queries that moved the story along to the next draft.
Author Boman Desai and copyeditor Vinnie Kinsella provided remarkable insights and edits. Their invaluable collaboration helped me take the book to its penultimate draft.
Zumaya publisher and editor Elizabeth Burton worked tirelessly with me to polish Megge of Bury Down, providing edits that strengthened the prose and asking astute questions that enabled me to enrich the story.
Celeste Seibold supplied the friendship, meals out, and laughs that made the past seven years such a pleasure.
My husband, David Sublette, gave me all the time, encouragement, and support I needed to bring this book to life.
To all of you, my sincere thanks.