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Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. Crispin: The Cross of Lead is a 2003 children’s novel written by Avi.

It was the winner of the 2003 Newbery Medal. Its sequel, Crispin: At the Edge of the World, was released in 2006.

The final book that completes the trilogy, Crispin: The End of Time, was released in 2010. England, a 13-year-old boy, known only as Asta’s Son, lives as a peasant in the small village of Stromford.

His village is part of the territory of the feudal Lord Furnival, which, in Furnival’s absence, is under the control of the steward, John Aycliffe. When his mother dies, Asta’s Son is left alone, as he has no other known relatives. Asta’s Son turns to the village priest, Father Quinel, his only friend, who gives to him a cross of lead that belonged to his mother, and reveals that his true name is Crispin.

Father Quinel promises to reveal to Crispin the truth of who his father was, but before he can, Aycliffe’s men murder him, forcing Crispin to flee the village by himself. While fleeing from Aycliffe and his men, Crispin comes across an abandoned village where he meets Orson Hrothgar but people call him Bear for short.

Bear learns of Crispin’s lead cross and notices the writing on the cross. While Bear does not tell Crispin what the words say, Crispin realizes that the cross and its words are important. Bear is rough with Crispin, but during their travels together, a true bond of friendship develops between them.

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