Cover image for Silver on the tree
Silver on the tree
Cooper, Susan, 1935-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2013, 1977.
Physical Description:
334 pages : illustrations ; 20 cm.
In the Welsh hills Will Stanton, youngest of the immortal Old Ones, joins forces with Merriman, Bran, and the mortal Drew children in a quest through space and time against the powers of evil known as the Dark.
General Note:
Originally published in hardcover: New York : Atheneum, 1977.
Reading Level:

890 Lexile.
Program Information:
Reading Counts RC 6-8 6.1 18 Quiz: 10431 Guided reading level: W.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Hamburg Library J FICTION Juvenile Mass Market Paperback Open Shelf
Angola Public Library J FICTION Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



The Dark is rising in its last and greatest bid to control the world. And Will Stanton -- last-born of the immortal Old Ones, dedicated to keeping the world free -- must join forces with this ageless master Merriman and Bran, the Welsh boy whose destiny ties him to the Light. Drawn in with them are the three Drew children, who are mortal, but have their own vital part in the story. These six fight fear and death in the darkly brooding Welsh hills, in a quest through time and space that touches the most ancient myths of the British Isles, and that brings Susan Cooper's masterful sequence of novels to a satysfying close.

Author Notes

Susan Cooper was born in Buckinghamshire, England in May of 1935. She attended Slough Grammar School, and then went on to Somerville College and Oxford. She was the first woman to ever edit the University Magazine, the Cherwell. She graduated from Oxford with an MA in English and went to work for London's The Sunday Times as a reporter on the Atticus Column for Ian Flemming. She evenutally made it to features writer, during which time she wrote her first book, "Mandrake," a science fiction story for adults.

Soon after the publication of "Mandrake," Cooper wrote the children's story "Over Sea, Under Stone" for a publishing house competition. It would later become the first of a five book series she would become famous for. She left England in 1963 to marry an American professor. Once there, she wrote two more books for adults, "Behind the Golden Gate" a study of America, and "Portrait of an Author" the biography of J. B. Priestley. In 1970, Cooper published "Dawn of Fear" an almost entirely autobiographical book about growing up as a child during the war. Even though Cooper wrote "Over Sea, Under Stone" as a entry for a publishing house competittion, she did not know at the time that it would be the first of her most famous copilation, "The Dark is Rising Series." In 1973 she wrote the second in the five book series, entitled "The Dark is Rising," published more than ten years after the first. In1974, Cooper published Greenwitch, book three, and book four, "The Grey King" a year later. "The Grey King" won the Newberry Medal in 1976. "Silver on the Tree" was the fifth and last book published, completing the series in 1977.

After completing the "Dark is Rising" series, Cooper turned to writing for the theater, learning the style from Urjo Kareda at Tarragon Theatres in Toronto. She wrote for Jack Langstaff's "Revels." Her first major play was called "Foxfire," which was written in coolaboration with Hume Cronyn. The play eventually went to Broadway in 1983 and starred Hume Cronyn and Jessica Tandy, who won a Tony for her performance. Cooper then began working on "Seaward," but was interrupted by Jane Fonda, who wanted her to write the screenplay for Harriet Arnow's "The Dollmaker." She wrote the adaptation with Cronyn and won a Humanitas Award for it, while Jane Fonda won the Best Actress Emmy for her role. Cooper also got an Emmy nomination for her adaptation of "Foxfire" for television. "To Dance with the White Dog," a made for tv movie, was the last collaboration of Cooper, Cronyn and Tandy, Tandy having died in '94.

IN the '80's and '90's, Cooper wrote the text for many children's picture books such as, "Jethro and the Jumbie" and "Danny and the Kings." 1993 marked her return to the Children's Book List with "The Boggart" and int's follow up "The Boggart and the Monster" in 1997. In 1996, Cooper published a collection of essays on children's literature entitled, "Dreams and Wishes." Over the course of her career, Cooper has written for newspapers, books for children and adults, screen[plays for television and cinema, and a Broadwat play. Today, she lectures on children's literture and continues to write.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 1

School Library Journal Review

Gr 5-8 This dramatic reading of Silver on the Tree (Atheneum, 1977) concludes Susan Cooper's five book fantasy sequence, The Dark Is Rising. With the Arthurian legend as its core, it presents the classic myth culminating with the battle of good against evil. The Drew children, Merriman, and Bran, their Welsh friend, try to outwit the schemes and strategies of the Dark. British actor Alex Jennings provides a stunning vocal performance, sliding in and out of voices so easily that listeners will soon forget that there is only one narrator. From the rich, resonant Merriman to the lilting Welsh brogue of Bran, the voice variations achieved for the multitude of characters is outstanding. The rapid narration adds intensity and urgency to the unfolding events. In order to understand the story, it is important to follow the series in sequence. The audio versions of the previous four titles in the series are available from Listening Library. The richness of the story and the excellent reading will sate those who revel in this format and delight those who are new to it. -Tina Hudak, St. Bernard's School, Riverdale, MD (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Google Preview