In Northumbria in the ninth century, 10-year-old Uhtred is adopted by the victorious Danes after they kill his father. He is trained to be a warrior by King Alfred. Uhtred fights first on the side of the Danes, but eventually he must choose where his loyalties lie as he grows to adulthood. Tom Sellwood is outstanding in this performance, not only in his rendering of the myriad character voices, but also in his ability to re-create the atmosphere of the time period. The battle scenes are so realistic that listeners will feel themselves part of the "shield wall," the preferred military formation of that period. With lots of blood and guts, raping and pillaging, the authenticity is hard to deny.