THE FOREST is the companion volume to Edward Rutherfurd's masterwork SARUM--- and it is set in the surrounding area of that novel. From the time of the Norman Conquest to the present day, the New Forest, along England's southern coast, has remained an almost mythical place. It is here that Saxon and Norman kings rode forth with their hunting parties, and where William the Conqueror's son Rufus was mysteriously killed. The mighty oaks of the forest were used to build the ships for Admiral Nelson's navy, and the fishermen who lived in Christchurch and Lymington helped Sir Francis Drake fight off the Spanish Armada. The New Forest is the perfect backdrop for the families who people this epic story. The reach their climax in a crime that shatters the decorous society of Bath in the days of Jane Austen, whose family lived on the edge of the Forest. Edward Rutherfurd is a master storyteller whose sense of place and character---both fictional and historical---is at its most vibrant in THE FOREST.