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I read this book growing up in the mid-1970s and would love to identify it for a re-read. The copy I read seemed old-ish at the time, so my guess is that it is likely from the 1960s (or possibly earlier, but I don't know there was much of this sort of fantasy published pre-Tolkien, although this had no elves or trolls or anything so far as I remember, just human characters). I recall it as a very trope-y, third person point of view story of an adolescent boy in a medieval-ish setting who has to leave where he's grown up because of some danger or trouble, and in his journey is accompanied by a mysterious older man. There is much trouble in the land because the throne is empty, and there is some sort of search or prophecy to identify the true heir. The boy thinks that the older man must be the true king, but of course in the end it turns out to be the boy.

I realize the above is not much to go on, but the one detail that I recall quite strongly is that to be confirmed as the heir, the person must be at a certain place that's basically on top of a hill or cliff or something right at dawn (precursor of He Who Comes With the Dawn from Wheel of Time?), but the boy is injured or something and so basically the older man carries the boy up there through the night to be in the right place at the right time and then huzzah huzzah all is well.

Also I have a vague recollection that the word "Glory" might be in the title but I'm definitely not certain of that. Any pointers/possibilities would be greatly appreciated.

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  • Hi, welcome to SF&F. Can you describe the book physically at all? Size, type (paperback/hardcover), thickness, colour of cover, any details of the cover art...
    – DavidW
    Oct 24, 2022 at 3:14
  • The copy I read was a roughly Nancy Drew-sized hardback with a plain colored cover; I imagine there may have been a dust jacket at one time, but not when I read it. Oct 24, 2022 at 18:21
  • Sounds fairly strongly Arthurian legend based to me. Might help narrow it down, but the trope is pretty common.
    – bob1
    Nov 8, 2022 at 0:23

1 Answer 1

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If there is magic it reminds me of The Farthest Shore by Ursula K. Le Guin published in 1972. A young man joins a wizard and the quest is about saving magic. The main thing that makes me think of this is this bit: "Arren has fulfilled the prediction of the last King of Earthsea many centuries before:

He shall inherit my throne who has crossed the dark land living and come to the far shores of the day.

which I pulled from the Wikipedia page. This book has dragons and a sea element if either of those things sound familiar.

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  • First thing I thought of. But I don't think there's a hill.
    – Spencer
    Nov 29, 2022 at 22:36
  • I've read the Earthsea trilogy maybe a half dozen times. This was by a far less famous author than Ursula Le Guin (hence the trouble tracking it down). But thanks so much for the thoughts! Dec 1, 2022 at 0:08

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